Long Time

So sometimes there is so much to say that all you can do is shrug. Then years later you can't remember what you did, in say, 2012, because your life was too complex and intense and confusing and delightful for you to ever get it down in words.

That's me, right now, with this post.

I'm tempted to just shrug off the last 6 months, and just blog about-- I donno-- maybe snails.

A move, a move back, some critical decisions, a new job...Yeah, I'll go with snails.

So the other day the girls and I were walking around the farm in the pre-dinner witching hour: too early to put them in bed, too late to go anywhere or start anything. We walked all the way out to the wild guavas and picked enough to fill my skirt and RJ's skirt full of the yellow ping pongs. You have to eat them in one bite, don't look inside, and just leave the spiny top. Swallow the seeds and any little worms there may be inside and roll the tangy stuff around in your mouth.

RJ found a snail-- a big one, with an elegant pointed shell. She declared it her pet and carried it suspended in the air. It strained its foot-body-face out and RJ delicately poked it in the eye with her ti leaf. "I can see its pupil!" poke, poke.

I was torn between pity for the snail-- imagining its vertigo at the 90 snail-storey height, and its alarm at the torture of being poked again and again in the face-- and admiration for my kid's spirit of scientific inquiry. MP, 2, was not as interested in poking the snail in its extendo-eyes, but served as the butterfly lookout instead, from her place of honor mashed onto my back in the baby backpack. "Babapie! Babapie!"

The girls have a fishing net that doubles as a butterfly net. And since it's been in the house, many cabbage moths have met their untimely demise in it. The girls' enthusiasm is murderous.One of them will spot a likely candidate for butterfly-napping, stalk it, and then --WHAP!-- smack the net over the top of it, in the grass. If it is still alive at this point, the girls scrunch up the net all around it, and then lovingly, gently, denude its wings of dusty cells. If, after being mashed and handled, it is still limping around, the girls tenderly put it in a cigar box with some flower petals and a bead to keep the lid propped open-- so it can have some air.

When RJ announced, after really smashing one lavendar-colored butterfly into a dusty paste, that from now on she wasn't going to catch any more butterflies because they just died, I felt both proud of her and sad for her lost innocence. She learned about her own danger, about the fragility of the little things around her. But she gained some adult-style caution that takes her just another tiny step away from childhood.


  1. So glad you're back on line! I've missed the window into your life - even though your life was kind of close by the last six months. Write on!

  2. Happy home again - and butterfly colorpowders, wild guavi and calmer waters.


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