Once upon a time, relatively recently, there was a small tree living behind our bath house. We had a little problem back there with drainage. You see, the rinse water of the all showering and laundry done inside washes out a hole in the wall – a hole, by the way, that I consider to be the instigator of my Rudyard Kipling phobia. I always expect a cobra to come slithering through.
Anyway, the waste water was odoriferous.
My idea was to move the tree, excavate most of that area and back-fill it with charcoal from all the bamboo fires. Ponra said to just whack the tree away. I was fond of its leaves; however. They were quite lemony and added a pleasant flavor to many a meal and our sun tea. It was a hell-of-ah project, but I managed to get it relocated; coincidentally on Mon Mon’s first birthday.
Mon Mon or Mon or her official moniker Bi-mon, which by the way, is the name of a tree. The bi-mon tree naturally, which has wonderful leaves, of its own, that brew a mellow tea. I liked the serendipitous synchronicity of learning all that. Still fond of the lesson, actually.
Sadly, the tree did not thrive in its new locality. Perhaps, the spot lacked effective drainage. The transplant flourished until about half way through the rainy season. After an extended period of mourning, I finally got around to removing the skeleton. Over there is what I found. >>>> This bit of remembrance keeps moving around. I put it somewhere I regularly passed by and frequently paid my respects. My wife keeps throwing it away. So far, I have managed to retrieve it. (She is so good at letting go!)
I found it just inches from the fire pit yesterday. Yesterday, being Valentine’s Day. I, also, once had a section of bamboo with a heart shaped center. It was on the stairs for a long time. I suspect it made it into the fire pit. Fortunately, I had preserved its memory with my camera.
So, four days before Valentine’s Day is Mon Mon’s birthday. Here are a few glimpses of her party. Maybe, I should have taken that shot of her with mum and dad first. She was fading or succumbing to all the sugar by the time I got around to it.
The Thai think of their age in a similar manner to my father. When asked how old he was he would respond with the year he was in. Like … that was Mon Mon’s third birthday. On the day after and for the whole next year she is considered four.
Oh yeah! Valentine’s Day gets very little play here. We had a mostly normal day except for the lesson I was dealing with. There were these really yummy mushrooms amongst all that food at the birthday party. Once they had begun to … ah … cleanse me, Ponra mentioned that it is not a good idea to eat them raw.
Well, she had been concerned about me sitting at my computer, too much and not getting enough exercise. I was up and down the stairs quite regularly for several days, repeatedly checking to make sure no cobras had snuck into the bath house.
Just after dark, Ponra came up and informed me she was off to our neighbor’s house to visit with their TV. I couldn’t help myself. I asked: Roo wahnee mai – Know today? Her smile was warming, “Wahlentyn day.” She never change course or slowed down. Just before she reached the door she said, “Mai sahm-kahn.” Not important. (She is so good at detachment!)
In part, I agree with her. I like to have a dash of Saint Valentine’s spirit in every day. That would be much in the same way I enjoy the spirit of Christmas; whenever I am so moved. Even … if I feel like getting someone a present, I don’t consider myself to be constricted by waiting for their birthday… and so on and so on and conversely.
On the first day of Mon Mon’s forth year, I was right here with my keyboard monitoring my illusionary conversations. Her commanding voice rose to distract me. She was being very clear (Not that I understood a word she was saying!) and adamant about her opinion. She sounded friendly but extremely empowered. I got up and looked out the window. She was on her new toy cell phone!
Do you use Twitter? Do you think it is weird that some people have an automated message responder that ask for a complicated code, that is more of an eye test, to be copied into a little box in order to prove humanness?
I’m occasionally teased by the idea that “Social Media” could well be an oxymoron. Maybe not. Maybe I just don’t understand the concept of social. That is highly probable. It is also possible …… well, things change, don’t they?
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