Hide and Seek

Today, I had to take two of my siblings to a park to play. A park – in the middle of the desert? Green grass, trees, shade, playground and swing, full of kids having fun? In the desert? I went, and it was pathetic. Little less than an acre, a few trees, a set of swings and a slide with accompanying monkey-bars. Fun? No.

So, as I sat on the swings, watching my two siblings try and have fun, I remembered the wonderfully large and fun park near college. My roomies and I would go there barefooted and release our inner-child. No such luck here. I moved to the picnic table under the shade and opened my book. My eyes never focused on the pages.

My two siblings were doing tricks on the monkey-bars. I looked at the trees, most too limpy or too high to climb. Then, I saw one. With the first spot to climb at 6 feet, it would be tricky, especially with that rough texture of bark, especially in flip-flops. But, then again, as a child, I was an expert at climbing trees. I went over and grabbed on to the lowest branch, standing on my toes to reach it. I jumped, reached higher, and jumped again, climbing up as if I were on a coconut tree. Once I got settled, I relaxed. This was more like it. I love being in trees – up high, wind blowing, becoming one with nature.

My siblings came over to where I was sitting and couldn’t see me. I watched them with a smile as they tried to look around for me. I took off a flip-flop and through it toward them. They saw it land and looked over to the trees, expecting me to pop out from behind one. They still couldn’t see me. I through the other one, now balancing on the tree barefooted. It hit my sister, she went over to where it was thrown, still looking at the ground level. My brother, however, caught on and saw me. Finally, my sister saw me too.

I laughed. Unwittingly, I had started a game of hide-and-seek, long ago unfinished. As a 12 year old, I hid in a tree with fall leaves, while wearing a maroon and gold shirt (my jr. high colors) and was never found during hide and seek. Now, with a hint, I was finally found in a green tree, while wearing a green shirt. I started to have fun. My brother climbed up. I helped my sister up.

But, as I got down, I was terribly scratched and pierced by numerous splinters. Hide and seek was over.

Summer Break

I have always disliked summer break…swimming, pool parties, beaches, barbeque, sleepovers, lazy days, library adventures, they are all done within the first few weeks. After that, what else is there to do?

This past year I have had the roughest school year yet – not only with classes, which, while very exciting and interesting, where a challenge to keep up with, but also with also issues. Social issues with friends and roommates, mental issues, family issues, etc. I gave the whole year 150% effort – grades (succesful), working out (mostly succesful), and trying to fix a few broken friendships (not so succesful).

Summer. Brand new start for me. I love starting anew, it fills me with hope, courage, determination, and exciting for what’s to come. I have 10 more days, and I have not started over.

Studying Welsh has been inconsistant, I cracked open my novel’s notebook once or twice, working out has given way to sleeping in. A few things have worked out – scripture reading has improved, and I have started to mend the broken bridges, and of course, I have been working almost every day for Wales and next semester of school.

But really what this summer has been for me is a break. A break from everything. A break from trying. A break from stress. A break from expectations. Although I may not like it on a day to day basis, thinking I should be doing or working on things I’ve lazily decided not to, I’ve come to realize it’s ok.

It’s ok. Break time. Enjoy the summer. Relax. Be lazy. Have fun. Don’t stress.

But then again, I only have to keep myself from tearing my hair out for another week and a half until my life stops being on pause.

History is My Home

I miss Virginia. I have always wondered why. Is it becuase I grew up there? From fifth grade to graduation? Is it becuase the best friends and memories of my childhood were made then? Is it becuase of the beauty of the green and the amount of plentiful trees and sparkling rivers and lakes?

Or is it the history?

Watching one of my favorite shows, Liberty’s Kids, I am amazed and nostalgic when the opening song plays. True, its a cartoon and can never do justice to reality, but the colonial culture in which it presents sparks something.

I never really enjoyed American history as much as world history or especially European history. But, after shadowing an American history teacher this semester, and watching the new History Channel series, America: the Story of Us, I realize, I do love the colonial history of America.

Maybe that is why I miss Virginia so much and wish to move back. Not only does the nature inspire me, but the history that brings it alive is what pulls me back: Jamestown, Williamsburg, Mount Vernon, Yorktown, DC, civil war battle sites, etc. I love the history, I love how Virginia brings it alive. I want to immerse myself in it. And I will. I would love to move back to Virginia, move back to the beautiful, peaceful state that is in every way representative of America! History is my home!

High Moral Standards

A friend from work was revealing to me all the reasons he liked me: cute, smart, funny, kind, high moral standards…

Wait. High moral standards? Wow, he noticed that? More than noticing, he cared about it enought to mention it? Wow. That’s why he likes me? Becuase of that little part in my life that I have always taken for granted growing up in my church?

I smiled when he said that last night.

I am still smiling.

I want to take what he said and improve on it. I have been lacking a bit. I could do better in what I say and do. I could do better in my daily scripture reading. I should do better – I will do better.

If that small comment can affect me this much, make me smile and lift my self-esteem? And then take it and improve on it? Who else will notice? How will I feel about myself?

Thank you so much. You don’t know how much those small, plain words meant to me.

Dried Up River

For the summer, I live in the desert with my family, right next to the Mojave River – literally next to it. Every day while driving to work, I have to cross this dried up river of sand.

While away at college, there were some big storms and water started to fill up the river again – not alot. The river bed is very wide and very deep. Shallow water started to flow through, enough to see the lines it was caressing into the sand.

The first day I went to work after coming home for the summer, I was suprised to see these little riverlets streaming down an otherwise barren wasteland. It made me smile; I looked forward to the drive to work. It gave me hope – that in this forsaken desert, some paradise had pushed through. I planned to drive to the riverbank one day I didn’t have work, and play in the appealing water.

But, as the week has gone on, the riverlets became smaller and smaller, sinking into the underground course the Mojave River takes, or joining the clouds in the sky. Now, there is no water, just a bridge over sand. The river has run dry.

Just as my creativity has. My muse, still lost, probably was hiding under my bridge, waiting for the perfect day to play with me in the cool refreshing river. But, with the blaring sun and the winding sand, and the dry, dry atmosphere, she has left me again, with a dried up river. I cannot wait to go to lush, green, moist, water infested Great Britain. 50 more days!!