Thursday, December 24, 2009

Day 121: The day before Christmas

In a frantic search for the pressure cooker stop, we pull out all the drawers in the kitchen. We find many birthday candles, at which point, a discussion starts about how many candles to put on Jesus Christ's birthday cake - is it 2009, 2010, or less because in the middle ages, we skipped a few years? We reach no consensus, but the artichokes are well steamed, and we have lunch in our backyard on this beautiful sunny day, with homemade mayonnaise (thanks to Camille). We are so privileged.

...which reminds me of the cashier at Trader Joe's yesterday with her Santa cap and Rudolf antlers. Despite her cheerful attire, she is angry - her face says so. At some random point, she says " Santa lives in Marin, because we are so entitled here in Marin." As she bids farewell to us, she swallows her "Merry Christmas" , and says the generic "Happy Holidays". I speculate that she is still holding on to her ideals even though reality has been harsh. There is much to be angry at, for sure. But, the sun comes up every morning, whether we are angry or happy.

I find myself on the phone with a driving lesson school for my 15-1/2 year old, who wants a driver's license. I have put up as many obstacles as possible to delay this process. I, who shifts lanes as soon as I spot anyone under 25 and above 60 behind wheels, have been as passive agressive as can be. I have come clean and told Julien that I will not pay for any of this. He will have to pay me back. By forcing him to call around for prices, I figure I have saved him 10 to 15 hours of burger flipping/ dish washing in the near future. Blessings come in different forms.

I look back to when I was 15. Back then, I worked weekends in a factory and then as a waitress , serving horrible coffee, because I knew no better. I have never stopped working since, excluding the 18 months in class at business school and the 9 months of nightmare in Toronto (while waiting for a visa, fighting a nasty international child custody battle, with an infant Julien to soothe my heart, a soon-to-become-Aya in my tummy, my friend Yuko calling almost everyday to cheer me up, with Columbo and Startrek replays on TV). Working for money has taught me many valuable lessons. Scrooge and I can tell you that money is important, but a balance between money and living is even more important. Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, and love, peace and Zen to all.

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