Friday, November 28, 2014

Thyme Leaf


In a slow motion, with interruptions, in a fast track, with overflows, his thoughts danced. “Should I go back? Should I stay? Should I move on? Should I sleep? Should I solve it? Should I search? Have I found it? Kyrieleison, Kyrieleison Lord have mercy on me, Lord help me!” Then with a sudden movement he hushed this creature called brain, stood and gazing at nothing in particular he declared! “I know it!” And with excitement Samuel ran to his professor to announce the news!
“I found it! I shall be a thyme leaf Sir!” He announced opening the door of the office a brisk way!
The professor who usually likes his quiet naps quite much was disturbed, but this time not for being awaken form a peaceful siesta but he was pretty sure he heard his student accurately. Wishing he made a mistake he inquired “Sam, son, a what? I asked you what would you be if you had all chances before you… “
“Yes yes, I know” He hastily replied, he was looking for the answer for over three weeks and he felt a storm in his stomach… Samuel had a personal relationship with his body; he felt it all in his organs so lively! He was afraid he would be sent to think again! He was not particularly fond of thinking, especially about existentialist questions!
“And did you answer me a thyme leaf boy?” The voice of the professor was calmer but you could feel the disapproval in his tone. 
“Umm… yeah… A thyme leaf.” Samuel answered hesitating. His professor was kind but he wanted to impress him so much that he could not take a risk to have a wrong answer for a matter of such importance… a matter of life and future!!
The professor knew his pupil was not like all the others but he thought that it’s maybe genius… but now doubts started to creep in… “He might be crazy, he probably is” He thought… “Hilarious Sam… Have a seat, and please explain to my poor wits this choice of yours” He said pointing to a chair facing his wonderful wooden desk.
Samuel moved slowly hoping to find in the few saved seconds some courage. He knew why he wanted to be a thyme leaf but will he be able to put it in a clear and understandable language? Samuel was not a typical person… He could write pages and argue for days about why birds love worms but when asked about personal choices, he’d lose all ability as if he was an alien. 
“I, I, I… I am thirsty Sir please, can I get a cup of water?” his face was red and yellow and green and soon enough rainbow. 
“Hurry up, go on. I know you’re not thirsty, but go on, gather your guts and come back.” This time the professor spoke with gentleness, sensing the tension in his student. “Bring me a cup too with you, would you please” he added trying to normalize the situation.
Samuel started to mumble as he was going to get the cups “Will I be able to explain? What if I fail? He did not specify… My, oh me! Oh me why do you always understand things upside down, why do you always have to put I in a difficult condition.” He sighed.
He thought of changing his answer, but it was too clear for him why he made his choice and so with determination and a sprinkle of courage gulped from the fresh water he entered the office again. 
The office has a soul of its own. It imposed a posture of awe and reverence. You feel such a speck in it. Perhaps it is because of how it is built: red velvet carpets, beautifully carved wooden shelves, porcelain ornaments, a chimney, a sword on the wall… in short a very Victorian like library. But perhaps as well it is because you feel in it the presence of all who were before and how their thoughts roam in the air you breathe. And perhaps for a moment you get the chance to meet them, at least this is what Samuel was hoping, to be able to meet Nostradamus and ask him to predict how these coming hours will pass! 
“Sir, are you there?” Samuel scanned the room and found no one around. “ha! I am safe! I gave my answer, was ready to explain but now he missed his chance, I am out of here!” He thought! 
Just as he was turning to leave he hears the voice of his professor emerging from under the desk. “Come in, come in, I am here just fixing my chair, have a seat please”. 
Samuel sat down, blushing and looking from the corner of his eyes muttering. “Sir, you know I can explain.”
“haha! I have no doubts Sam, proceed” He said in a more of an amused tone than a sarcastic on, but Samuel did not see it that way. 
“Do not laugh at me Sir” uttered the little boy with the strength of mind that he will not let his superior have fun of him because of his choice! Regaining posture he continued. “A thyme leaf sir is very noble. Thyme does not accept to pass without being noticed, you will smell in the woods, you will spot it on the teeth, you will taste in your pizza. Thyme just does not pass unnoticed! But thyme as you might as well know sir, is pretty small and would not really mind being tread upon, thyme does not take offence being treated as less than fancy, as extremely common but then again Sir, no one would call a thyme common… it’s just not … common! Thyme is discreet too Sir, something in its nature is just too peaceful to make any additional noise and no that does not contradict the fact that it does not pass unnoticed… the sun is discreet, prof, but can you just miss it when it’s shining up there?” He paused to see the reaction of his professor who by now was taken by this answer. He did not see it coming. “Wow” He thought… “This boy has more brains than one would imagine.”
“I am impressed Sam dear” He finally concluded “You sure have grasped the essence of this life. Funny how sometimes we get so conditioned that we miss the joy of just being. Thank you my son, thank you, you’ve refreshed my soul… I thought you lost your mind, some sort of illness that comes with intelligence, but you’re not there yet, not yet.” He giggled a bit and stood up and walked towards the window.
“Thank you, Sir” replied Sam grateful that he got this nice praise from his master but more grateful that the interrogation was done and that he can now go back to his little garden! He has wanted to plant this basil since his friend gave it to him two days ago! 

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Introducing Something New - Bells

I love short stories! I love long stories! I just simply love stories! 
And I love telling stories!! But since it is hard to gather people around me to tell a story (even though it is a little dream of mine, to be a great orator and all...), I thought of writing them for people but with some participation for it is an essential part of storytelling the input of the audience!! 
It is sort of a little game. I love games too by the way. The person gives me ten random words and I write a story for them containing those words. 
I usually do not  publish them on the blog (obviously) but yesterday I finished one and I was encouraged to share it here and I thought yeah why not!
So I am introducing a new label, my very first label, "Short Story". Here I will post the stories I write and I hope you will enjoy reading them as much as I do writing them! (Please note that I am not a professional writer and typo is my best literary device...)
I will put the list of words I received in the beginning and you can try to strike them out as you find them in the text (a little bonus game for you). You can participate as well by sending me your own list of words if you wish to have your own story! 

So long story short (I found this idiom funny in this context!), here it is my first entry under this awesome category! Enjoy!


 “Victor!” She ran to open the door and exclaimed as she saw him,” I have an idea! and you’ve got to agree pretty please!!”
“Okay, okay…  I’ll hear it all gladly but first let’s have our tea” he replies taking his coat off then he adds solemnly “You know, I am glad I was not born before tea!”
“You’re right! I am glad too! “She agrees, running to bring the tray she already set.
Pouring a few drops of milk in his cup he declares,” So! What are you so excited about”.
She was a hearty woman. She was always excited about something.  She had in her a spirit that left everyone almost jealous. She had an air of happiness that seemed to be anchored somewhere beyond this palpable reality. She was a mystery and he loved this about her. He loved her.
“Well… Victor… have you ever thought about the meaning of life?” she replies rather peacefully for tea has this effect on her.
They did not miss tea time. It was more than just the drink and the biscuits. It was a time of transformation. A time where all their universes melt together, a time of sharing and those who share with you a meal, share with you their life for in bread and water lay the symbols of life, of the Life.
“Ummm… No, not really… uhhh… Was this you discovery for today?” he replied rather perplexed not because he did not like to engage in philosophical debated with but he didn’t expect this to be her answer after her enthusiastic welcome.
“Yes and no, ” she said swallowing a big gulp “I want to propose something… can I?“
“Sure you can, but I thought, well… never mind… yes, what is it that you want?” he spoke with a gentle voice for he guessed that she was rather hesitant. She often doubted herself and her ideas because people often found her atypical and he did not want to add to this. He wanted her free.
“Victor! I’d be greatly obliged if you would tell me what I have done - always part from feeding the pigs, raising some very decent carrots and walking the donkey …” she mutters quickly
“But I thought you loved it my dear… I thought you wanted the simple farmer’s life… I thought you were happy… Are you having trouble… do you want to get someone to help you during the day?” He said that and went up to hug her…
“I am! I am happy and I am not complaining… I am asking you because I was thinking about the meaning of all this life… and I think I found it…” Then she declares promptly “Bells are an underappreciated instrument.” and stops.
“Oh?” he looks at her now more confused than ever.
“Yeah they are rather charming,” she gets up and shows him to the ceiling “and I think we need to hang one here… a big on victor, like the Church bell…” she states passionately as if some hot blood got in her again.
“You want to hang a church bell in our living room? And what does it have to do with the meaning of this life my dearest” his voice was barely audible for he was trying to contain his tears. He felt guilty for leaving her alone all day to go to work in town. He thought he made things catastrophic by choosing to move this rather primitive place… He   wished they could just be together all day but he has to work!
“Yes, yeah, I want to hang a big beautiful metal bell in our living room…” She holds his hands kisses then and continues “imagine for a second… it’s fascinating… don’t you think so?”
“I am not sure I am following beloved… maybe I am sleepy, maybe I am dizzy but really what is it all about?”
“Victor, oh my lovely Victor! I have hurt haven’t I? Oh how silly of me! I should have explained before I suggested all this…” She mutters in his ears trying to comfort him.
He hugs her tightly and tell her, “I was only sad because I thought this life we chose made you unhappy…”
“No, no, not one second! I am too happy Victor! And today I discovered that not only are all our afflictions momentary. But all of it is totally meaningful. Every millisecond of our pain every millisecond of our misery in the path of obedience is producing a peculiar glory we will get because of that. I have been raising the chicken and milking the cow but all this is worthy of my time and diligent application… I am doing what was required of me. I have obeyed and waited. It will often happen like that. As one of the modern authors has told us, the altar must often be built in one place in order that the fire from heaven might descend somewhere else.”
“Wow… you have pierced my heart…” then he giggles, “heh, you always creep me and I think, Oh the tragedy, only to discover that you have something else hiding there… phew! My heart is becoming weak my love heh…” he was saying that very relieved. Then as if something hit him he exclaims, “But what about the bell?!”
“The bell! Yes! Can’t you see? In bells lay the meaning of life…” she stops to give him time to grasp
“Oh? And how so?” he said with a curious tone for he knows she will astonish him.
“You see how they take every hit, the painful hit, and transform it to a beautiful vibration? You see how they handle there waiting peacefully for their time to be used and sometimes from Christmas to Christmas or from Sunday to Sunday but they wait happily for their call of duty. They do it all in obedience to the ringer, in total trust that he knows what he is doing, in totally belief that he is going to let out of them the most beautiful symphony ever… and their sound will reach to the entire town! Bells are very much what we should be Victor… and I want to hang one here to remember every time I pass by it to be a bell in the hands of my Ringer…” She looks in his eyes and adds “What do you think?”
“And where do we get one?” he replies with a wide grin on his face and an overwhelming feeling of happiness in his heart, for he knew he made the right choice marrying her.

He Flourished...

It has been a while since I have shared with you some plant insight (I hope you miss these because I really love them)! 
I discovered something (Christopher Columbus is very much likely to be one of my ancestors...)! I discovered the plant of Jack and the Beanstalk... Okay maybe not... obviously, beanstalk ... But I did discover one very cool plant! It was at the door of a good friend of mine... Sort of a dense bush of green antennas, small stems in all directions on one thicker stem... Sort of the tree you would draw when you try to draw a leafless oak tree but without the brown part, the trunk that is! 
I do not know what they named it but I baptised ours Eugene! Wait... No! I did not steal it! My friend captured my very subtle fascination about it ...(OH MY! I LOVE THAT PLANT!!! sort of reaction) so she cuts one of the thicker stems and tells me to put it in a cup of water for some time and soon it will start to have some roots and then I can plant it and wait (sort of an eternal wait) for it to become a huge blob like hers! So did I! I put the stem in a cute red cup and long story short, the plant started to have roots and now it is all in the ground breeding peacefully! A very simple rooting method and it usually works well... Eugene is a very happy little antenna-tree reaching up constantly! I am happy! 

I visited another friend. I do tend to make a lot if visits... I believe it is an essential part of life and those who love to visit are usually wonderful people (my ego boost for the day!). There was something fascinating about this person and for some reason Eugene came back to my mind...
I do not know how to put it exactly. So please pardon me for the chaos below...
I thought it was the water! It must be it! The water is what sustained the mother of Eugene and water what made Eugene have roots and water is what will leave Eugene flourishing! And Psalm one came to my mind, the tress planted by the stream of water are always green...And I thought about the promise of the Lord that those who drink from Him will never thirst but living waters shall flow out of their hearts! It seemed to fit... It seemed to fit that even if I do not particularly live by a river, even if I am in the desert, the Water of Life is in me... Eugene, cut of the main tree did not die, will not die... And I thought I need to drink more of that cup, come more to that source... I cannot leave Eugene better than me! 
I thought that after all, at the end it is all the same, it is all related, Eugene on my balcony, his mother on her door, me in my office, my friend somewhere else... We are united, here, there, everywhere for we all have that same Sustainer, we drink from the same Well... and I know my friend does it so well! 

Friday, November 7, 2014

He Restores...

You have to excuse me dear reader for I have a tendency to repeat but some things are beyond time and therefore will never get old, used or repeated enough...
A few years ago I have painted a very beautiful ceramic vase (it fits perfectly here to mention that a monkey in the eyes of its mother is a deer) , it was in the shape of a lady wearing a dress and I chose green... because it is one wonderful colour. I felt very achieved for it truly was nicely done... But beware oh me! God humbles the proud, He does! A week or so after that my colleague came over to ask a question and... Oh the pity, oh the massacre... She hit the vase and it fell to a million piece (why do we say a million piece, I have not even counted but I think if I did, it would have probably been an odd number, something close to 573447 pieces...). But! I did not despair! I went again the ceramic shop and did another, vase, not dress-like but yes green indeed... It was even more professional than the first one with such a finesse... that I forgot the humility lesson! So yeah (you guessed that right), God intervened again through my dad (Papito I love you)... Papa did not even let it live for a day... broken beyond repair! 
That hurt. That really hurt... and for quite some time I felt life was a bit like this. My life that is. A vase, and each time I feel it is being crafted beyond perfection, it breaks, it falls, it just becomes a mess, my perfect dream crumbles... Until the day I gave up dreaming of my own and started to pray to dream of Heaven... And something right then happened... The fullness of Life swept me away... God is faithful even when we are not. He does not despair (if I didn't! would He!!). He gathered the dust I became and breathed His Spirit again in it and made again a jar out of my million scatter piece...
He surpasses our expectations... He does not just fix the vase... He paints it with meticulous details. He looks for ever wound and heals it. Every thing that meant to us in that old vase is replaced with a better meaning, with a prefect definition... He reconstructs our memories, our dreams, our vision...And He cares. He cares for us, He cares for me more than the lilies! And once I was lost but now I am found! I have been dignified, I have been crowned, I have been Graced with a grâce upon grace!

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

But Love...

There are times when nothing makes sense and times when everything does. 
There are times when we deserve every bit of what we are going through and times when we do not. There are times when we understand and times when we are left puzzled, lost, confused. 
There are times when we see it coming and times when we are just hit in the face...
And as I realize this and write it down I remember the famous words of Qoheleth: ( Ain't his name so cool? I wonder if my husband will ever let me name my son Qoheleth... who is that dude? He is "presumably" the writer of the book of Ecclesiastes...)... He puts it so eloquently (something I need to learn!! eloquence!)
For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven:
a time to be born, and a time to die;
a time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted;
a time to kill, and a time to heal;
a time to break down, and a time to build up;
a time to weep, and a time to laugh;
a time to mourn, and a time to dance;
a time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together;
a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;
a time to seek, and a time to lose;
a time to keep, and a time to cast away;
a time to tear, and a time to sew;
a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;
a time to love, and a time to hate;
a time for war, and a time for peace.

But Love!

I was thinking about love a lot lately.  Love is different... (I guess obviously...)
I had a little existential crisis over the weekend that actually continued with me till today. I felt overwhelmed by love. Covered, followed, blended in love, like how milk and coffee blend, how our shadows follow us, how the rain covers us... and all I could think was, ouf, dear me! I do not deserve not one mite of it! I felt so deeply the love of my friends, the love of my family, the love of strangers, the love of community, the love of things (yeah things tend to give love to us in their secret way), the love of God... I thought love will never make sense! Love will never be earned or deserved... or even logical... but there it is in abundance, and despite of who I am or what I do... And tears filled my eyes (they actually physically did at many points of these last couple days...) because I felt so helpless! How can I repay my friends for all that love, how can I repay my family, how can I repay the Lord for loving me with an everlasting love... But really I cannot. Because Love does not function that way... we accept it. As an act of love we do, we accept love gratefully, gracefully! 

And like the flow of a river that can never come back to the source, it walks its way and irrigate as it flows... So it is with the love we receive, we give it back with a bit of ourselves, with the fish and the pebbles inside us... and we hope that one day, when it evaporates it will come back the where it started! 
And so I wipe my tears (even though I know they will come back because this reality is just so real to grasp!) and I set before my eyes a standard, to love like He loves! 

Thank you and I love you! (you being every single of you who have shielded me with their kindess, generosity and love!)