A quiet good day for Julia and I on Friday. We woke up late, spent the early part of the day making the last batch of gingerbread cookies -- many dinosaurs in that batch -- from dough that Cheshire mixed up and left in the frig two weeks ago. We made the most delicious and thin cookies, baking them for such a short time -- 8-9 minutes in the oven. Now, what to do with them??
We went to see Dolphin Tale -- pretty delightful movie and Julia loved it. We are slowly moving from animated films to live action and it helps when the action is about an animal. She understood all of it and enthusiastically talked about it afterwards. It is an incredibly tear jerker and I had tears running down my face 15 minutes in. But the time we left the theater, I had run out of klenex as well as the napkins I brought into the theater for out popcorn. As we were leaving, a woman asked if we had seen the movie and what we thought about it. I had a hard time talking!
Julia and I stopped for some sushi after the movie. I had sushi, she had a bowl of soup with those thick udon noodles and vegies and shrimp. It was strange that when she first got the soup, she did not know how to use the chopsticks. We don’t use them at home mostly because she has not been interested. Maybe I will put them out again when we eat appropriate food. It took Julia a little while to figure out how to eat the soup and it was really hot which made it hard for her in the very big bowl. I started putting noodles and vegies in a smaller bowl for them to cool a bit. Julia started eating and then evolved into a very effective eating machine! It was as if China washed over her. She was picking up the bowl, scooping the noodles up like she did when she first came home, and slurping. When she was finished her mouth was greasy and her grin very large. It was as if she tapped into her inner Chinese eater. Very sweet. Ok, a bit messy, but still, very sweet.
At the theater, Julia spilled about a third of her popcorn before the start of the movie. I was going to just let it go but Julia didn’t want to sit near the dropped popcorn. So, I told her to go out to the concession and ask for a way to clean up the popcorn. This is a very small theater and I wasn’t asking her to go far. I gave her a bit of a lead and then followed her out to the lobby. She was standing at the concession but couldn’t quite figure out who or how to ask. I told her to wait behind some people and when it was her turn, she walked up to the young man working at the counter. She did not quite look him in the eye but she said, “Excuse me, sir. I dropped popcorn and can I clean it up?” I was astounded at her presence. A bit awkward and forced, but clear in her purpose. The young man (I might add, bless his heart), volunteered to do the clean up, but I asked if Julia could do it. He have her a small broom and dustpan and she did. She even asked for my help in finishing the job. And funny, after that, she ate more popcorn than she usually does.
Just a brava for my girl!
And last night, another dream. This time, Italy. David and I spent months in Italy. Frascati. Just outside of Rome. He writing his first novel. Me, spending days walking in Rome with multiple guide books, hours in museums and churches, and singing sometimes. We were so far from home, the furtherest we had been up to that time. And it was a wonderful, hard, enlightening, entertaining, joyful, sad time. We came back from Italy and felt the home that was New York and got pregnant. Actually, I was pregnant when we arrived home but lost that child at 11 weeks or so.
Still, in the dream, I was in a cafe that was attached to our hotel. I was with David and Julia and we were waiting for someone. Ach! I don’t remember the sequence of the dream right now, but we sat with Adam, one of Cheshire’s old boyfriends and chatted. Some people were checking out of the hotel and we changed rooms, going up and down stairs with backpacks and suitcases. I could speak Italian and tried to explain my ilife experience to the innkeeper who was a woman about my age and who had never left her home town. I tried to tell her that I envied her life path, envied her rootedness and her complete sense of belonging. She would not believe me.
Julia wandered away from the table and to the back of the cafe. I followed her and found a group of young people getting ready to play a upright piano and sign musical comedy songs. Julia volunteered to sign first and got up on the back of a flatbed of a truck and asked for a song from Shrek -- a musical that we sing in the car in this life all the time. The piano player started playing but Julia couldn’t start singing. I helped her from the stage/truck bed and another young girl got up to sing. This one couldn’t start her song either and I suggested that she get off the truck, stand by the piano, and that I would sing with her. She had a beautiful voice and after a verse or so, I stopped and she continued without a hitch.
I wandered back to the cafe to look for David. Adam told me that he had left with Glenn (a very old friend of David’s who faded from our lives when we left NYC although I imagine that he still lives there). I was not sure whether to go back to the back room where I could hear singing or go looking for David.
Just after waking from that dream, I thought about how I sm once again looking for an idea for a job, something that I might train for and then get paid for. Then I realized what a bad train of thought that was for me to follow. I want to work. I want to work at something that I love. I want to eventually get paid, but why am I looking down the path of pay first. It might be a good way for other people to conceive of work, but it puts all sorts of stops on my thinking and imagination. It came to me that I need to just follow the tasks that I want to do. Right now, that is finding out more about mindfulness and bringing some sort of practice to families with challenging kids. That is as far as my thought had led me and that is enough for now. Enough until I find a way of doing it.