Saturday, May 12, 2012

of mp3 players and memories

Prepping for next week's trip. Teaching my husband to water the herb garden. I flipped out on him because he referred to the Parsley as Cilantro, citing this slip as evidence that he has no intention of harvesting Calendula every other day. After we watered the back yard, he started to go inside, further proof that he would forget to water the back-back-yard and the Motherwort and Marshmallow would fare poorly.

I was unable to make it to the Southwest Conference on Botanical Medicine this year, so I purchased the lectures to listen to during my journey. My mp3 player died and via a long series of events I will not bore you with, I inherited my daughter's Zune player, the one that accompanied her through high school. "I haven't turned it on in years. There's probably a ton of crappy music on it. It's confusing at first, but you'll figure it out," was all she said. Such faith in my technological abilities!

I'm on day 2 of "figuring it out". I've managed to unlock it, charge it, and make it play. Hopefully before Tuesday I will load it with herbal lectures.

Interesting though, scrolling through her high school music, listening to what she sang along to back then. Time machine mp3 player. It reminds me that everybody's going through something. And that everything actually does pass with time, no matter how large it looms in your head and heart as you pass through it.

As we move from infant to toddler, pre-schooler to kid, the upgrades are joyful. Then at puberty we're outfitted with the tools for adulthood. From then on out, the transitions can be confusing, heart-wrenching, life-altering. I don't want to go to the cancer center next week. I don't want to drive home with my aunt in stitches, in pain, or quite possibly without surgery, hospice-bound. I don't want to go, but I will.

Soon enough I'll be home from this trip, harvesting Calendula blossoms and eating nachos with my generous daughter. But today I'm sharing some teenage angst, unloading the dishwasher, and listening to The Mountain Goats.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Adios La Yerberia, for now

I'm going on another one of my geriatric support gigs. Rather than deal with the intricacies of long-distance order fulfillment, I'm shutting down the website for a few weeks. But I know it will be longer than that.

Driving the land yacht to Houston again, ferrying my plane-phobic aunt to her medical treatment, 6 hours away. I'll load the CD player with Rocio Dúrcal, Dean Martin, and Johnny Cash and soak up the stories that the music coaxes from the old ladies. It'll be 3 of them and me. I'm no spring chicken, but in their eyes I'm always a kid. A kid who can now make their hotel reservations, order their Whataburgers, pilot the Lincoln, and interpret the medical-speak. 

That's my aunt Lucha in the picture. Bet you know which one is her. That's Gustavo in the hat, my grandfather, her dad. This photo's been tucked in a pocket of her dayplanner for years. Well, I call it "her dayplanner", but it's not hers. It's where I keep her numbers, pins, and paperwork. 

I stare at it from time to time, but I've got no insights. For me it is a meditation on the passage of time and it's interaction with a life, with relationship, with choices, and with debt.

Anyhow. I'm shutting down the website. Here's a little Rocio Dúrcal for you, Amor Eterno.

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