life according to me

life according to me

Wild Mustard & Spanish Tests

Ahhh…the delightfulness of a Friday yawning ahead of me with nary a plan in sight. My favorite sort of day.

I should have known that it might not be so when I forced myself to get up at a minute before eight because at least I could have bragging rights to it. Not that there would be anyone who cared, of course. Most people I know would have lounged in bed after getting up at 5am for the past three mornings to walk a few miles before starting the day. My feet hurt. My ankles hurt. My back hurts in a place I didn’t even know existed. It is so true about what they say about using it or losing it. I’d like to lose it, because at least then it wouldn’t hurt.

I valiantly edged out from underneath the rising garage door to retrieve the paper, averting my eyes from anyone on the block who might see me in my tacky sleepwear of wrinkly lime green tee and wadded up brown and pink polka dot bottoms. What might they think?

That I’m a blogger?

I was determined to straighten up the kitchen, and then relax with my coffee. I’d read the local paper, which hasn’t been removed from its bag in quite some time, building up in the garage after being kicked in each day to collide with the others in a move one might execute in a lawn game involving colorful balls.

I did get the kitchen cleaned, but I never made it to the paper.

And somehow it was suddenly 11:40. And then it was 1:55. How does that happen? I knew I had to pick up the my son at school and drive him to spend the weekend with his cousin who is also sort of like an only child. They have quite a bit of fun together laughing about things I can barely understand. It’s fun to watch them and it’s important that they spend time together.

But my son had a Spanish test today, and I made the grave error of asking him about it after we were involved in the kind of talk we both enjoy while on the way to his cousin’s house. Like smacking each other when we see a Prius and yelling, “LunchBox!”

I know. But we think it’s hilarious. If we see a red one, it’s worth three. I’ll get around to explaining how it came to be some day when I’m not wallowing yet again in self loathing.

At some point, after I’ve explained my frustration with his chosen inability to learn enough Spanish vocabulary to understand the questions he’s expected to answer on exams, when he can memorize entire lines of dialogue and recite them ad nauseum, he does direct my attention to the hills that edge the freeway.

They’re ablaze with wild mustard. You know it’s spring in Paradise when the wild mustard blooms alongside the golden poppies, and it is quite beautiful when you take the time to notice.

mustard04.jpg

He is doing more than trying to change the subject.

He’s trying to make me feel better because he knows I love pleasant distractions. He also knows that I am so tired of anything that has to do with school I can’t see straight. I have spent only four years of my entire life without being involved in school at some level and those years were the first four of my life.

I’m so fried, I’m crispy around the edges. Done.

I dropped him off, telling him to apologize for me about not going in to say hello to my sister-in-law. After removing his bag, guitar, and box of models, he shut the car door and bent over to look through the window at me. Smiling.

Nice kid. Really.

Too bad his mom’s a pain in the ass. And my state only deteriorated after dealing with Friday traffic in Paradise which isn’t nearly as bad as that of L.A., but bad enough. The trip took nearly three hours. Three.

And so I’m sitting here sifting through the remnants of this day, looking at a card I found shoved in a drawer I was looking for batteries in earlier today. My mouse finally died, and when I pushed through the clutter, I found the card. It was given to me by two people whom I once knew. The inside message was hand-written and I think it’s apropos:

I am still determined to be cheerful and happy in whatever situation I may be in, for I have also learned from experience that the greater part of our misery or happiness depends upon our own disposition and not on our circumstances.

— Tehmina Qureshi

So true. So very true.

Good to think about on a Friday.



11 thoughts on “Wild Mustard & Spanish Tests”

  • Yanno, Olga, I wasn’t crabby to begin with, but that school crap just gets me by the short hairs. It makes me not see all the lovely stuff I normally see. It’s such a scam. And you’re welcome. I felt the same way when I saw it. Thankfully!

  • I like the quote… I think I’ll print it and put it on my refrigerator for
    those days when I’m feeling……

    Way to go on the walking…waking up stiff and sore sucks, but I have
    been told it gets better…eventually.. You’ll be bikini ready soon!

  • Thanks, Melissa. I need to keep it near, too. As far as the walking goes, I was in the habit for about a year and a half. Even when I was still working. The thing that has improved the most is my ability to breathe when I exercise and the muscles in my butt which seem to have only made it bigger. Boom-baa-baa-if you know what I mean. But my friend and I haven’t exercised since before winter, so are just getting back into the swing of things. The annoying aspect about it is that you work so hard and nothing seems to change. You sit on your rump for a couple of months and you become a walking talking piece of cottage cheese. ARG!

  • That is so true. Like that other saying that says “the world is the color of the window you look at it through”, or something like that.

    I need to write that down and put it in front of my computer. I need to remind myself to smile so many times. And the picture of the wild mustard blooms is lovely. Flowers here are finally starting to bloom, too. Bye, bye winter 😀

  • I believe those are the words my moh lives by, I have much more difficulty. I’m afraid that if I sit there with a smile on my face, life’s challenges, and therefore life’s opportunities, will pass me by. Well, not me so much but the people that surround me.

  • Did you write that just for me? Couldn’t have come at a better time. I will go out in the sunshine today and ” smile though my heart aching, smile even though it’s breaking” That is one of my favorite songs. Keep on writing what I am feeling. Hey, I think that boy will be successful no matter what. He loves you and that really is all that matters in the long run. Love

  • Ben, your saying is making me remember the one about looking at the world through rose-colored glasses, which is quite different than what you are saying. I’m glad that your winter is nearly over. It’s been a very long one, hasn’t it? So much for global warming, right?

    loripea — I think it’s saying something different. I don’t read complacency into it. I read that if I’m negative and always seeing things as being “half empty” instead of at least balancing my perspective with positive along the way, then I will miss so much and will be left only with what is wrong. I don’t want to be miserable, and I know I’m a long way off from being anyone who could be considered a happy sap who just lets life pass by. Sometimes, I truly believe that one of life’s biggest challenges IS stopping long enough to notice the small things and respect that they have every bit as much or more importance than what the masses consider to be significant.

    e – No, it was serendipity with an odd spin because the card had been found and was sitting here before any of this happened. It was like I’d need it before everything was done. And I did. But I did think of you as I was writing, because I do know this is something you are constantly thinking about. And I know he’ll be successful, because that’s a matter of disposition as well, isn’t it? The nice thing about my boys is they aren’t wrapped up in what others think of them. I’ve wasted far too much time in my life worrying about that and it’s a complete waste of time. Mwah to you!

    Hey Chick! I’m glad it served a purpose. Enjoy your weekend and all that matters to you!

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