Allow me to borrow a book title for my blog post today. I have just finished reading this, a book about a family’s struggles while fleeing war-torn Afghanistan. I have just encountered Nadia Hashimi’s book, my first one of her actually but based on Goodread’s short bio about her, she is a very gifted author. This book was simple but so elegantly written that I can’t help but fill my small notebook with quotes that ring and vibrate throughout the story.
I never base my reviews on book summaries but how it affected me while reading it. This is one of those books that is comparable with the works of another Afghan author that I admire so much, Khaled Hosseini. Don’t ask me why but ever since I started reading I have always been fascinated by history and historical novels. I think I am old soul. I am reminded of those times when I searched and bought almost all of Leon Uris’ published books and reread Ayn Rand’s The Fountainhead.
One learns a lot when you read about other people and other countries’ cultures. You learn how their lives are shaped by their beliefs and their love for their families. You learn that everywhere, there is something similar about the culture you grew up in. Family represents a binding force always. And lest I forget, let me quote some of those words I’ve jotted down while reading this book.
- – Love can grow even in place where there is hardly air to breathe.
- – There are truths and lies and there are things in between, murky waters where light gets bent and broken.
- – Love grows wildest in the gardens of hardship.
- – Some things are clearer from a distance.
- – It takes a lifetime to learn your parents. For children, parents are larger than life. They are strong arms that carry little ones, warm laps for sleepy heads, sources of food and wisdom. It’s as if parents were born on the same day as their children, having not existed a moment before. As children inch their way into adolescence, the parent changes. He is an authority, a source of answers, and a chastising voice. Depending on the day, he may be resented, emulated, questioned, or defied. Only as an adult can a child imagine his parent as a whole person, as a husband, a brother, or a son. Only then can a child see how his parent fits into the world beyond four walls.
There are more wonderful quotes that I’d like to share with you but these will do for now. Next on my list is a book about Lou Gehrig’s disease. The last time I encountered ALS ( Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis) was when I read Tuesdays With Morrie several years ago. I hope I won’t cry as much as I did when I read Mitch Albom’s book. I remember giving copies to my two doctors when I had sigmoid surgery. It is a gift to know that you can be strong even if you are dying.
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I feel so lazy, so lazy to compose a blog post. Every time I attempt to write one, I always end up visiting and reading other blogs instead.
This is one of those rare times that nothing comes out, one of those times when one is not inspired enough to write. Maybe one of these days, the muse will come back. I chanced upon this link which was posted by a friend on Facebook. I got curious. I seldom click these sites which tell you who you are, who are your favorites based on your FB posts, how you would react in a particular situation and lots and lots more. I love grammarly.com though. The site is very useful for me. To cut the story short, here’s the result and it made me smile:
You are creative, expressive, thoughtful. Therefore you should be a writer.
Being a writer is too strong a word that I would use though. Suffice to say, I love stringing words into short stories. Our blog posts are usually just that, telling stories and sharing them with the world.
I am trying to catch up on my reading challenge, I have long neglected it in favor of other things. Two books in advance, not bad. It is hard to pick up a book again after so many days of inactivity. I recently finished one about owning a bookstore, loving books like they are part of the family, the characters deeply ingrained in one’s psyche that you think it is for real, jumping at you from the pages and you long for the story to continue after you turned the last page.
I follow Seth Godin’s blog. I find it engrossing although the blog posts are just short but the contents are varied and inspiring.
I’d better make my morning a little productive. Hello world!
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Yesterday, Mom got busy fixing her things, arranging and rearranging her clothes, her medicines, some groceries that she has to bring home and as usual reading those medicine prescriptions (she does it almost every day) that she has accumulated while arranging them with the newest one on top.
She came to my room with a copy of a passport size print and said “keep this in your wallet so you won’t forget my face when I die”.
I wonder where that came from, I mean her statement on dying. So in jest I answered, “Mas mauna pa ako sa inyo” meaning I’ll die earlier than she will. We both laughed. True, while she visits her doctor regularly complaining about the normal wear and tear of growing old, she looks hale and hearty at 87. I’ve visited the hospital and been confined for a number of illnesses more than I can count. I had a phobia of going back there, just the smell of antiseptics reminds me of those days when I was struggling with my health.
She is going home tomorrow and she said that there are lots of things to do there. I will surely miss her and her appreciation of anything that I put on the table. She said, “parating special ang ulam natin”. Those are ordinary fare I serve every day but in her eyes, they taste even better.
Life with mom, there is never a dull moment when she is around.
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Posted in home garden, journeys, life, thoughts, tagged blessings, Close to Nature, home garden, journeys, life, nature, thoughts on May 18, 2016 |
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The garden is bathed in soft light and glistening with raindrops while the sun is slowly showing its face.
I could smell the delicate scent of the Calamansi flowers (they seemed to have blossomed overnight) mingled with the aroma of basil and oregano. It’s one of those times when you want to linger with a hot cup of coffee on the side. It’s one of those times when nature seems to say, “it’s a beautiful day, enjoy it”. It’s a big YES.
We experienced a worse thunderstorm yesterday afternoon causing massive brownouts in our area. Just imagine four hours of fanning yourself like crazy and not even knowing what to do because even reading felt so uncomfortable. It was an agony alright. The whole street had lights on but each house had none. Mom repeatedly asked if it has different connection and I said yes.
I received a big surprise this morning when Josef gave me my Intellicare card from JP Morgan and Chase. It’s part of the benefits that they have as regular employees. I am glad since going to the doctor or to the hospital for check-up is now covered by this medical health care. Thank God for blessings.
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Posted in journeys, life, quotes, silence speaks, thoughts, tagged journeys, life, photography, quotes, thoughts on May 16, 2016 |
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This is Nate enjoying another day at the mall.
I am cleaning my “thought box” transferring most of those writings to my journal. Then I found this wonderful quote from Anna Quindlen in her book, Blessings.
“Life is made of moments, small pieces of silver amidst long stretches of tedium. It would be wonderful if they came to us unsummoned, but particularly in lives as busy as the ones most of us lead now, that won’t happen. We have to teach ourselves now to live, really live . . . to love the journey, not the destination.”
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I woke up at 4am, a little late than the usual 3am I’ve been used to. I’ve been outside and swept the front of the house, cigarette butts, candy wrappers, plastic with straw. Although we have a regular maintenance lady on our street, it is quite annoying to see those cigarette butts littering everywhere.
Gardening at 4am? Yes, it was a perfect opportunity to pull off those unwanted and stubborn weeds without the fear of having those motor vehicles and cars at your back. Ours is a very busy street so you just can’t go out and garden, either you garden at an ungodly hour or when the sun is low on the horizon. The heat would be intense by then you it’s out of the question.
For the first time in so many months, it is raining and it is not just the gentle patter you listen to but a heavy downpour. Oh blessed, blessed rain, you are very much welcome in this hot month of May. I could smell the rich earth as it absorbs rain water and I could see the trees smiling with glee. It must be nice to look clean and green again without the thick dust clinging to their leaves. It saves me a day or two of not watering my garden.
And to smell the rich aroma of coffee, what a blessing!
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I wonder if this is even worth blogging about. I have a confession to make. I was not able to concentrate on the mass today. Mom and I attended the 9am mass at the nearby Parish (as we always do every Sunday) but Josef chose to hear mass later this afternoon since he did some overtime work last night. It was only mom and I at our favorite pew. A few minutes after the mass started, an old couple sat on the same pew. The old lady (maybe as old as mom) sat next to me and I smelled the overpowering scent of her perfume. I felt like gagging and have to cover my mouth too without being obvious because my throat suddenly hurt. Know that feeling of a cold and cough starting and you can even taste the scent of the perfume?
Mom used to spray herself with such similar scent, strong, flowery and overwhelming (for want of a better description) but I told her that when the weather is hot, such kind of perfume is not advisable. I bought her a mild scented baby cologne instead and she liked it.
Why is it that some older people are more ostentatious when it comes to grooming complete with jewelry like they are going to a party – rings on fingers, bracelets, watch, earrings, necklace? I hope when I get a little older than I am today, I won’t need to surround myself with such things that are sometimes temptations to snatchers and robbers out there.
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