Saturday, October 30, 2010

Polar Bear Plunge, Seriuosly! 北极熊玩斗

We always take a left to the "tiger" route at the zoo.  It was not so much a routine but a natural inclination. Today however, I handed a map to the new boyscout, and asked him to lead the way.  He set a course by turning right, up all the way to the back of the zoo where we normally do not reach, and we were richly blessed by this little adventure and veer from routines.

We made a short stop at the old elephant mesa (with a new name "Urban Jungle") to feed the giraffes and waved back at some friendly (awake!) koala bears.  Then we were off of the beaten path behind everything that was familiar.  Camels and tree kangaroos  greeted us on the sides before we arrived at a brand new (well, to me anyway) elephant odyssey, where we exclaimed at everything except the namesake animal.   A young jaguar pranced among branches and grassy paths that led to a pond, where she stopped to lap up a drink.   A majestic lion paraded with his impressive mane puffed up against the outside walls of his cave.  A bold eagle spread its wings wide,  perhaps to have it cleaned by a younger subordinate,  or to showcase a hospital manner for photo seeking visitors?  California native rattlers lay nearby and motionless, just beyond the sight of the giant birds of prey (hopefully!).  

Now we were just steps away from the polar bear plunge, and as soon as we walked in, we saw that the exhibit had seriously lived up to its name today.  Two full grown bears were holding each others' fat paws between their razor sharp teeth, slipping off rocks and diving into the pool of ice cold water.  They emerged to grab hold of each other once more, one managed to push the others head down all the way until he was completely upside down.  The head standing bear leaped up to bite the others' paw again and dragged him off against the glass where their massive bodies were pressed flat, dripping wet, white against black skin, covering 10-12 audiences wide in dropped jaws and dollar sized eyes, cameras flashing like paparazzi chasing another drunken teenage celebrity.  Almost as fiercely as they were frolicking, they suddenly separated in pin drop silence.  Before we knew, the larger bear was holding a carrot with both paws and sitting with his back against the glass munching on it like a baby.   A fresh salmon was to follow as a proper main course, enjoyed slowly, playfully and methodically.   He bit, tore, tossed, caught, dug, flip, dove, twist, and turned the meal and himself dozens of ways and dozens of times,  now above and then under the water, now sitting and then standing, now chasing and then munching, he put on a beautiful, chilling, scary, and entertaining show for the stunned yet appreciative audience. 

We walked out of the exhibit nearly dazed, thinking nothing could top that performance today.  Of course we should have never doubted.  The four months old baby panda ("cloud" something was her name), climbed up 35 feet above ground into a swaying tree branch, and settled there for a nap.  Mom and dad were both up and active taking a leisurely stroll across the bamboos and over the rocks.  Of course, this is not to mention the exotic birds, water foes, zebras, deers, monkeys, gorillas, and the perennially adorable meerkats, just to name a few, among dozens of photo ready creatures who generously showed us their best sides and flashy smiles.

Sometimes we forget that we live next to a world famous zoo that is full of life yet still constantly improving and renovating.  I am so glad I remembered on this "wintery" day to stop by and make a visit to these endearing animal friends.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Coastal Walk 海湾小路

We were greeted by a pod of leaping dolphins just beyond the surf zone as we approached the beach.  Their shiny black forms danced in and out the curves of the water, an occasional flap, shot sprays of water upwards and about.  A fin here and a tail there, all glistened in the late afternoon sun, waving cheerfully at their concentrated and excited audience standing about the shore.  One young pup took on an incoming wave, rod it high and low for a while before being called back by mom and dad.  

I suddenly realized it was now approaching winter, and these could be migrating whales.  I was too far to judge their overall size, but the occasional visible fins and tails seemed much closer, clearer and impressively large.  Sprays of water continued to shot up,  yet it was difficult to tell whether they were from a blow hole or flapping dorsal fins.   The tell tale sign could be their colors, which were so inky black and shiny it  screams Orca.  Their leaps were also perfectly shallow and arched with just the tops of their backs rounding above the water,  in slow and rhythmic repetition, in the pattern of the ripples and waves of the ocean, a soothing dance as opposed to the more haphazard jumps of a dolphin.  But they were far away and had their bellies and underside mostly deep into the water so we could not make out the signature white mark of an orca. 

We talked throughout our walks, delighted and intrigued by the puzzle.  No matter the names of these creatures, their joie de vive spilled over the width of the ocean and onto us,  charging us through a power hike, and the rest of the evening with bubbly and chattering conversations.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Evening Clouds 秋夜风云

Sadly my little BB doesn't quite capture the texture of this lovely scene. Hence the little blurb below.
Driving home from an early afternoon soiree (yes whenever good friends get together - it's a party),  my eyes were once more drawn to the beauty of our early evening skies.  The sun had already fallen below the tree lines, but the sky remained bright and colorful like an old master's painting.

The background was a clear and almost transparent blue, with streaks of clouds stretched across and over the foreground.  They were the color of cotton candies pulled thin by a playful child, a blushing bride with colors peeking through gauzy veils,  masses of pink cherry blossoms floating across snow capped hilltops, and the pink insides of a white bunny's ears, surrounded by fluffy white volumes yet light as feather.

Everything below were turning dark and blurry quick, yet at every turn and every peek up above the sky, I see only a new variations of the brilliance leap into sight.   Orange, burnt, silver, cyan, blush, and occasionally bright lemon colors were slicing off the now deeper blue into banners and strips, giving the impression of a classical Monet or a traditional Navajo weave.  Perhaps this is a source of their inspirations?  

Stars and a full moon were rising to take on the night shift.  Yet the colors waved and followed me longingly on a slow and procrastinated retreat.   On my last turn,  gray and sapphire finally obscured nearly all the sunny colors, but a single streak.  Farewell.  See you tomorrow!  Rest assured that even if you wear a different shape and colored outfit by then,  I will still recognize your warmth, your light, and your ethereal and shining face.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Hereafter 今生他世

I saw a movie on Saturday night called "Hereafter".  Compared to "The Town", it was a snooze.  But I liked it.

It told the story of how people can be tortured by what is known or unknown alike.  The premise is life continues after death, yet a majority of us do not experience it first hand in our lifetime.   So it is in some serious "accident" that one acquires this experience, and it can be very painful, lonely and confusing.  Similarly when you are torn from loved ones due to death, it can leave you scarred and forever searching for that answer to your pain, not found in doctor's offices, common books or even the mighty Google.

What I liked was that unlike other movies, where each concept is visualized to the full extent, the stories are told from the perspectives of a few individual's eyes.  There were very little "all knowing, all seeing" camera angles or scenes where all is shown. (though ironically this was part of a repeating line in this movie).   An affair was shown from the perspective of the cheated as a few glaring evidences, and knowing looks from the man she confronted.  A spark between two people who met was demonstrated as an intense gaze.  The love of twin brothers are shown from their distinct personalities, one or two things they did for each other and friendly yet deprecating banters.  

I guess I've been learning the similar about good writing.  That is to "show" the clues and let the reader/audience draw their own conclusion rather than stating everything explicitly.  The movie "Hereafter" makes you think, draw your own conclusions, and is all the better for it.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Nature Walk 原生漫步

I took a walk in the botanical garden this weekend. This little oasis of trees, flowers, woodpeckers and waterfalls is tucked well within the city.  A walled garden presents a variety of herbs, sculptures and exotic fruits we could not name.  One tree is laden with green tennis ball sized fruit in deep green color, and the label said "pineapple guava".  It smelled of lemon, syrup, earth and rain.  Several friends couldn't resist their lush appeal, and found themselves a mouthful of sour juices, some squirting out to the sides.

We couldn't help but wanting to dance in the midst of a "concert on the lawn", conducted by a group of copper "musicians" wielding classical instruments.  They wore a concentrated and serious expression, yet their body seemed to move with the music flying off of their moss covered instruments.    The air was joyful and light, with speckled sunlight filtering through the banana and guava trees.  We look up to see ourselves sheltered in a hidden enclosure of greens, of delicious fragrance, and of dances and songs.

Out of this hide away garden, a waterfall in the midst of the park  told the story of tropical lushness.  The air is reminiscent of the island of Hawaii, warm, damp and smelled of decaying moss.   Everyone exclaimed at the sounds and sight of the fall, tumbling over black rocks in several tiers down to the pool, where lily and other mystery plants grew.  Flash lights blinded me temporarily until I stepped back to take in full view of the energetic flow of waters.  Stone steps along the waterfall allow you to explore the high reaching tropical growth on the sides, exotic orchids tucked here and there, an occasional chirp drew our eyes up, yet the singer was to be heard but not seen

Monday, October 25, 2010

Microwave Woes

This morning I decided to save the $5 for a coffee shop drink and heat up my own milk to make some mocha.  But I cannot find the blue mug which I usually use for this (I was told over the weekend that now that I am past a certain age, I've officially become one of those routine people, this maybe a proof of that point).
Whatever the reason, I somehow could not fathom using another mug, so I turned the kitchen upside down, through cupboards, sink, dish washer, oven (which I use to store a few things), refrigerator, freezer, pantry, and even the fruit baskets in the dinning room.  I poked around inside the bunny condo which is also nearby, as well as over and under the tables around the house, but alas, someone / something seemed to be playing a game with me, and I was not amused!

Time was ticking by and I had only a 30 minutes window to sit and enjoy my drink and maybe do a little reading.  I gave up after the search tornado had officially hit everything and turned them inside out or upside down.  I poured my milk into the white mug.  Then I opened the microwave to shove it in.  Voila!  The blue mug is stretched out on the circle platter with a smug slant.  I threw my hands over my head and suddenly remembered I had left the mug there earlier, but got distracted by the hussle and bustle of the morning.

By now you've probably concluded that I've lost more than my share of brain cells in the aging process.  Well maybe.  But somehow we all seem to have a knack for searching high and low for things that was right where it was supposed to be already.  Distractions,  false assumptions, over thinking, hopelessness, accustomed to failure etc. all seem to put us onto the fruitless path of search for seemingly elusive happiness, when it was sitting right under our nose.

I took a long sip on the mocha, rolled it over my tongue, swallowed, and let out a loud sigh at the sweet, warm and chocolaty buzz washing over me.

You know you have a little boy when... 男童趣话

  • At 6am in the morning, you hear the sound of the water fountain in your dreams.
  • Above followed by - "MOM! I peed standing up in the potty today!"
  • Your request to go shopping this weekend is met with whine, glare, silence, and clever redirection (don't you love it when they learn from you so quickly?) to the ballpark. 
  • You have a "duck or cover" reflex when changing diapers.  
  • You have an annual pass to Legoland.
  • You gave up on giving birthday parties in the house because having a handful of boys jumping around broke major furniture items.
  • You get a make up biology class daily during dinner about all the sounds different parts of your body can make.
  • You save money on napkins because they learned early on to wipe everything off of their sleeves.
  • You take a minimum of hundred toy train rides a week.
  • You learned at an early age (of your child) the value of a 'game boy' is under reported. 
  • After a few years, you stop believing pink is a valid color option for clothing.
  • You get "picked up" (literally with feet off the ground) ever since your child was old enough to recognize his biceps.
  • Your child sleep walk into the hamper / closet / bathtub off and on, and he was not in there to do laundry / change clothes / take a bath.     You, on the other hand, would be.   
  • You may not know how to program a VCR but you can put together a Bionicle in 30 seconds.
  • You know the meaning of the word "Bionicle".
  • You couldn't watch films like Stanly Kubrick's  "Artificial Intelligence" without crying like a baby.
  • You receive love letters (on valentines day) from someone whose way too short for your standards and it makes you happy.
  • You have a man in the house even when you are the only adult around.
  • You thank God everyday for little boys because they fill the world with a joy that is loud, stomping,  dusty, bumpy, unapologetic, uncompromising, maddening, wholehearted, determined, open armed, wide eyed and forever mesmerizing.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Garden Beauties 激情花

How does a flower grow, and into a name like "Passion" so full and well?
I am sure she weathered storms, like the ones we had last week.
Yet no tears remain on her crimson pedals, or emerald foliage.
Had she been in a greenhouse, she would have avoided any trauma.
No harsh winds, sudden temperature changes, or beatings from rain drops and hale.
But I see something distinct in her, rising above the dark and heavy storms.
She'd drank in the beating drops, only to plenish her upward reaching soul.
She'd stood against the bending winds,  catching and release friendly waves.
She'd bathed in the wilting sun, to gather the most brilliant blushing hue.
Nourished by trials as blessings from above, her vain flooded with peace, courage and strength.
Now her pedals open to the caressing sun, declaring a pure, open and thankful heart.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Transplant Connections 移居

Mr. M (my big brother) moved here from Canada recently, after having lived there for ~10 years.  Transplanting is never easy, but Mr M moved from an oil rich tax surplus state, established job, mansion like home, loving social circles, extraordinarily supportive church and friends, into California real estate, the economic recession, postage stamp back yard, and no friends whatsoever.  To say he has had a few issues, is putting the matter mildly.

My chiropractor gave his medical analysis:

"well, they can't be unhappy about the weather.  So they must be unhappy about the people".

I have a chiropractor with some Freudian insights you see. He also happened to be from the exact same town as Mr M.   We high five over this news and he continued his analysis.

"Before certain age, young kids donot play with each other, but they play along side of each other.  They don't yet know how to interact.   Back home, we have almost nothing to do in the entire winter months, so we called each other up and interacted.  But here, people call each other to go surfing, play basketball, baseball, hiking or what have you.   They are playing alongside of each other, but there is no interactions."

 I opened my mouth immediately wanting to object, but thinking back to the first few years (yes years!) when I arrived in Southern California, I couldn't help but nod.

I was a "loner" for the first time in my life.  I came from China where like it or not, hoards of people are literally pressed against your ribs almost all times, it was difficult not to make a few friends here and there who truly knew and "interacted" with you to the depth of your lives.   In my college dorm room, 8 girls shared a single desk, we have our own assigned drawers, but we went to lunches, the library, jogging, classes, dances, outings, and sometimes even bathrooms together. 

Southern California live up to its reputation of beauty in many regards.  But it had taken me years to rebuild a network of friends who truly mattered.  I've made it in a way.  However M's words struck me: "you have become one of them."   On the one hand, I now have friends who I can call up for better or for worse, who will analyze my worries and hand over all their fears and anxieties.   On the other hand,  I too have become so involved in my own sunny but busy life and established circles, that I'd forgotten the loneliness and helplessness that come with being fresh transplants.  I too have simply "gone surfing" without connecting with someone beyond the size of the waves.  Though I do care, I am not sure of what exactly to do to step out of my precious circle. 

But perhaps there is no circle in the end, but a simple barrier of fear and trepidation that separates people (not just transplants or locals) from instant connections that last a lifetime.   Looking both deeply within and beyond, with the help of time, space, and patience,  I hope this barrier will melt like the California coastal hills, into sand and dust and become part of the lasting landscape which we hold dear, forever.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Ocean 海

We are so blessed to live in Southern California where it is full of sunshine, blue sky and the ocean.  I was feeling scared of the pending changes in my job and life, so I decided to sit by the ocean in the early evening and pour out my fears.

Somehow no matter how things change, the expanse of the ocean does not.  Even after sunset, the breadth of its reach took my breath away.  Some oppressive clouds hover just above the last remaining blush, painted over the sky by the setting sun.  Underneath is another silvery streak of clouds melting into the ocean, from pale to dark gray. 

If I could draw my heart or mind, it would look like that.  The light and hope is there, but some dark clouds hover just above.  Though I know it is a matter of time that they are pushed away, shattered by the rays of the faithful return of daylight.  I could not help feeling faint and weak at the sight of their leaden weight.

Evening hours arrived quietly when the last of the blushing hue disappeared in front of me.  But darkness did not envelop.  Instead, all around the sparkles of the blinking evening lights came about, even to as far as across from me at the other end of the ocean.  They appeared floating on water, strips of brightness, recalling the illuminations of the earlier hours,  piercing the depth of black curtain of the night, and holding onto a reminder of the hours to come when sunlight returns.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

"I not crying" 我不哭

A little girl from my awana cubbies (3 year old) group cried a river and a half the first few sessions.   She was inconsolable the first session and had to be picked up early.

The second session she decided I was not a monster and leaned on me sobbing quietly most of the night.  But when I went on teaching the rest of the group, she listened intently and started to follow the others towards the end.

Tonight she jumped into the class as soon as she saw me.  Though her eyes rimmed red at the sight of her mom leaving, she turned to watch my face (and my next move).  I walked over smiling broadly, and helped her wave mommy goodbye.  She cheered up and made a beeline for her favorite toys, puzzles.   Hearing some mumbling, I walked over closer to hear her say:

"I not crying, and that's that!"

I did not know to laugh or cry, but I asked for a high and low five, the favorite treat to these kids.  She cheerfully knocked my palms unconcious and rejoined the group.

Though volunteering to teach six 3-year-old kids bible verses had brought me to the verge of tears several times,  I could hardly look at her and commit to do any less than this brave little cubbie.

and that's that!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Storms and Dreams of a White ... 望风梦雪

We had been hit by nothing short of glorious full on thunder storms and rains by the buckets lately.  While this is not common in sunny southern California, we are all the better and more thankful.  Plants have never been greener, and not at the expanse of a high water bill.  Our rolling hills of brown and mustard in past years turned completely green,  nothing shabby of the high country across the pond.  And isn't it wonderful for the first time in several years there were not even one "heightened alert for Santa Ana and fire hazard"?

When I was little, the roads had so many pot holes and little drainage, that whenever it rained, small ponds appear everywhere.  Dad and big brothers would teach us how to fold little paper boats and float them down these rain made "rivers and lakes".   We place colorful plastic toys inside sometimes to represent "sailors" or "captains", charging ahead in the boat with our dreams down the river of life.

Now, having grown out of the habit of playing with paper boats and rain water, we dream of fluffy snows brought on by the stormy weather pattern.  Maybe even a white Christmas.  OK maybe that is not realistic.  But if we drove to the mountains, which is 2-3 hours away, in December or even earlier, snow is sure to be abound in such a year as this.   We can then snowboard, ski or simply play in the white blanket of winter wonderland.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Pay it Forward

About a year ago I connected with someone at work to be her "mentor".  But it turned out she was quite capable and smart, leaving me flustered and confused:

what could I possibly mentor her about?

Luckily the program provided lots of guidance, one of which tells the "mentors" to simply ask the question above.  (It's the simple things I know.)

I was not able to help with whatever she needed in the end.  But with the hope that I had tried, and it was evident, she left the program feeling one more person was at her corner.

This Monday I got my answer.

She had generously helped someone else at my request, and when everyone gave me a hearty thumbs up of the connection,  I let out a long held breadth.

What can I say?  Except that pay it back is human, pay it forward is divine.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

The Town 家乡小镇

Saw a movie tonight named "the Town".   It talks about this town in Boston that was notorious for producing robbers.   However, it was quoted that people from this town were "proud of the town, where they were from, and who they are".

This is how I feel about my home town.

Unlike the southern towns famous for producing beauty, or the coastal towns famous for prosperity, or the ethnic towns for their exotic cultures, or the mountain towns for beautiful and highly capable women who make any man regret having been married; girls from our town had a reputation of being plain, boyish and spoiled.

We grew up with parents who work all day just to put food on the table.  With little in the way of entertainment or toys, we ran on the street to kick a ball, climb a tree, catch a tadpole, or dragonfly or two.  We invented our own toys, we even beat the boys at their own sometimes.  We are proud of our tomboy characters, our sleek and athletic movements, and our generous spirits and easy friendships.

Our town has had her fair share of beatings, earthquakes, political unrest, we shook with her yet did not lose our collective nerves.   When we were hurt, lost or sad, we tuck our sorrows and wounds into her arms and move on with our heads held high.

We grew up, eventually and lose our tomboy outfits, army pants and short hairdo, and swapped in designer clothing and bags. Now no one will ever mistake our girlish identities.  Yet we gain a reputation for being spoiled, as we don't see ourselves as subordinates and we know and demand the best.

Nonetheless, I love and am proud to be the daughter of our town.

If you have guessed where is my home town here is a good article about the girls from there:

Notable Quote from the movie:  "I will see you soon, this side or the other."

Friday, October 15, 2010

Chiromagic 正骨灵

I don't need to tell you how much back pain can bother someone.  Lots of us have had it, literally.

Well, I had so much pain that I couldn't sleep at all one night.  The next morning, I got a heating pad, and my very first appointment with a chiropractor.

I was very suspicious, which is why I had waited so long to even look into it.  Thoughts like:

* Is "a chiropractor" a real doctor?
* Is it just a really deep tissue massage?
* Do they just tell everybody they are "out of alignment"?
* Do they say that so they'd keep coming back?

were all over my head.

That's right, I am not a skeptic.  I am just curious.

Well, after my visit, here are some answers:

* the doctor seems real enough, he didn't over hype the issues, but stuck to what bothered me.
* I didn't get a massage, but a lecture on regular exercise, good postures and limiting stress.
* There was not much "alignment" talk, I did get an X-ray.
* I was encouraged back regularly but only once as a side note.

All in all, I felt a lot better, understood more about the impact of my work on my body, and the importance of regular exercise.  "Real medicine" or not, it got me back up on my feet, and feeling years younger in one session.  There wasn't even any drugs involved.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Our Table Leader 领班

All in red and a round apple she bites,
fruit of the spirit - patience, kindness and peace she brings.

A twinkle of compassion, a dash of understanding,
a winning formula of study sisters we are made.

Tears we shed, heartbreaks we found,
Should they define us?   Or like the evening wind they shall pass?

Giggle, wink,  and... sneeze!
Smile, laughter and a good time ring around us, 
Pour it into our hearts, spread it into the wind,  rich is this blessing of abundance!

Monday, October 11, 2010

New Baby 妞

I had the privilege to visit Liz's new baby today.  Wow!

She is peaches and cream, wispy haired, pink frills adorned and wore her toothless grins with a world of pizazz.  Somehow she managed to bottle two spoonful of the color only seen in the Pacific west coast ocean for her eyes,  and sprinkled ample sparks on top too. 

She stares and then she squeals.  With a turn of her head, and a gentle kick of her heel, she announces an agility that may threaten a future athlete.   When I take her into my arms, she wrinkles a tiny nose the size of the nail cap on my index.   Lips curling, and eyes popping, she let out a wail.   Aw,  my heart tweaked and twitch,  stomach lurch, muscles tense, a frown and a sad face all rolled onto me.  What shall I do?  Please don't cry!

She calms and rests her transparent lids closed, letting a fan of auburn lashes create a shade cover for the top half of her face.   I noticed her equally delicate brows, and we sigh together.   Her breathing comes to a rhythm, and she limps relax into me.   We melt.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Rain 雨

It rained overnight last night.  The drops drummed on roof tops, garden benches, fence posts,  and window panes without rest -- "pit-ah, pit-ah, ...".   The sound is familiar yet distant, as if created by fairy tale woodland creatures wearing floppy slippers, dancing and meandering slowly in our garden paths.

We woke to a world washed anew.  Our bird of paradise stood even talker and more distinct, I half expected a bright wing to take flight and shook of the drops right before our eyes!   Maples shook off half of its autumn palette to form a skirt around the roots.  Picking up a fiery brick colored sample, and you are rewarded with a bookmark in memory of this fragrant autumn day.  Rose buds compete with ladies' fully lipsticked pout, and it was an easy win with their added spark from beads of rain drops.  Mums offer friendly easy smiles in bunches, so much like laughter rolling with tears.

First Leaf 初叶

With focus, a single red leaf fills the picture as much as an entire forest.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Doctor Mom 小常今

My bunny fell sick today.  She sat quietly in her box, unmoving,  eyes closed.  Oh oh, my heart made a flip.  She is not going through that digestion shutdown ordeal again.

A few months ago, bunbun had a day where she would not eat anything, even her favorite treats like fresh carrots or apples.  Eventually she took nips of broken pieces of a granola bar, and that took her off of the hunger strike.  I then read that bunnies can sometimes go through this digestion shutdown, and if not corrected, they could die within 24-48 hours.

The second time this happened, bunbun couldn't eat the granola even though she instinctively raised her head and sniffed the air nearby.  She had been sitting in the same spot all day and evidence of that were on the floor under her.  Failing to reach the vet when we discovered her like that, we ran to the market and bought fresh vegetables like kale and parsley.  She pushed all offers of food away harshly, wincing and not even sniffing.  It was thanks to a left over syringe full of pain medicine from her vet that saved the day.  She was back on her feet and chewing nonstop again 10 minutes after getting the syringe.  Fearing I've created an addict bun, I was relived to see her much more interested in hay and vegetables than the syringe immediately after recovery.

Tonight, it was again too late for the vet.  I searched the frig, and realized we've used the last syringe.  Holding bunbun close, I heard a strange growling in her stomach, like a bag of liquid being moved.  Seems like she has a very empty stomach full of water.  Again, she refused our offers of freshest veggies rushed back from two different markets (first one ran out of kale).  Scratching my head, I again searched the frig.

Hmm, a can of ginger ale popped into my eye.  Wasn't ginger supposed to be soothing for the stomach?  Last month when dad was sick from medications, a little bit of this had stopped the vomiting quickly.  Without further debating, I filled half the medicine tube with ginger ale, and carefully lifted bunbun to place just a dripping drop next to her mouth.  She liked the sweet taste, and licked it up hungrily with her tongue.  Not wanting to fill her up with soda and chemical, I only allowed the liquid to be licked up drop by drop, watching and waiting for signs of recovery.

Ten minutes later, bunbun still sat quietly, though moving her head once a while in search of us.  She sniffed but sat unmoving.  I was getting anxious.  What else could I give her?  I heard her stomach growl once more.  Just then, Tim was looking for a snack and opened a tiny tub of apple sauce.  I thought, hm, bunbun did like apples, a completely healthy diet at small doses. It would be a bit of solid food to get her stomach going again.   It was perfect.  The apple sauce was at a consistency that mixed well with ginger ale so I could get it into the syringe.  I pushed it drops by drops into bunbun's eager tummy, and waited.

Another ten minutes passed, we injected some more apple sauce.  In total this amounts to less than 1/2 teaspoolful, yet bunbun looked much better.  I no longer heard growling tummies.  And it is bedtime for Tim.

Coming downstairs after tugging him in, I heard the sweet sound of vegetables crunching between bunny teeth.  Yes!  Sure enough, she was chewing her parsely and kale, even some Timothy hay. She jumped out of the box happily and moved around to find the best angle to munch on the treats.  Scanning the floor of her "condo", I see pieces of a kashi bar, dandeline leafs, flowering kale leafs, parsely, carrots, and a piece of orange peel, I laughed so hard I cried.

It was a blessed night.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Discovery Road 发现之路

I dread my weekly drive to I-15 north, in and through the middle of nowhere.  I was often bored and depressed on this drive, having nothing better to do than dwelling on all the problems in my life.

Today is the first time I am driving on this road looking for blessings, and I found many.  Blue skies, majestic mountains, languid clouds, well paved and safe roads, polite (yes!) drivers.  I never realized how gorgeous this road is, until I looked up from myself, all the way into the most expansive canvas there was,  and discovered all the beauty beneath.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Dinner and a Movie 静物

The onion like greens is a favorite chinese vegetable: 韭菜。 I like cooking it with eggs, meat and lots of flavors.  It is also commonly found within chinese dumplings, adding a special fragrance to the tasty little treat.  I took this photo by placing it in similar colored cups,  and the whole arrangement on top of my macbook pro.  After dinner, that is where we would watch "karate kids" online.

My job takes me dinning out often, in fancy restaurants with gourmet flares.  They are memorable and impressive, in an expected extraordinary way.  Yet facing this moment of stillness and humility, I saw an exuberance that took my breath.


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