Thursday, January 26, 2017

Pumpkin Chronicles - Epilogue

     It has been day after day of sullen gray around here. But it has also been warmer than usual with not a speck of snow to show that it is winter. It brings the squirrels out of hiding to forage for food. My lovely pumpkin collapsed in the thaw, thereby thwarting its ill-fated attempt to reinvent itself as a Cinderella coach. All is not lost. In a final gesture of friendship, it surrendered its golden aspirations to the needs of the squirrel-folk. 

     Noble pumpkin.

Saturday, January 21, 2017

Hobnobbing With the Queen

     Punkybean knows that I have visited Buckingham Palace and taken pictures of the Queen's guard outside the gates. The subject came up last year as we were stuffing black olives onto our fingertips and pretending they were British soldiers. It came up again after we watched the Minions movie. It also came up after we watched the BFG movie together on my birthday this year. Punkybean has repeatedly asked me to take her with me the next time I go to London so that I can introduce her to Queen Elizabeth. I haven't the heart to disabuse her of her notion that I am on speaking terms with Her Majesty. It's right up there with Santa and the Fairies. She thinks I know them too.

     One night at supper recently, she asked her mother: "Mommy, what if I moved to England for a long time and learned to speak England language...when I moved back, would you have to teach me to speak English again?"

     That one we can amend.

Friday, January 13, 2017

I See Myself


"The pumpkin looked delicious--almost perfectly round and deep yellow in colour, it sat on the passenger seat beside her so comfortably as she drove out of the car park, so pleased to be what it was, that she imagined conducting a conversation with it...And the pumpkin would remain silent, of course, but would somehow indicate that it knew what she was talking about, that there were similar issues in the world of pumpkins.

     "She smiled. There was no harm, she thought, in allowing your imagination to run away with you, as a child's will do, because the thoughts that came in that way could be a comfort, a relief in a world that could be both sad and serious. Why not imagine a talk with a pumpkin? Why not imagine going off for a drive with a friendly pumpkin, a companion who would not, after all, answer back; who would agree with everything you said, and would at the end of the day appear on your plate as a final gesture of friendship? Why not allow yourself a few minutes of imaginative silliness so that you could remember what it was like when you believed such things, when you were a child at the feet of your grandmother, listening to the old Setswana tales of talking trees and clever baboons and all the things that made up that world that lay just on the other side of the world we knew..."

     I see myself in books. We read to know we are not alone. It is somewhat reassuring to know that I am not the only one.

     Meanwhile, it is also cheering to know that while my Fairy Godmother did not make an appearance over the holidays, nor was I invited to a ball of any sort, my lovely green pumpkin did its best to turn itself into a golden coach.

     High marks for the laudable effort to reinvent oneself in the new year. However, the discarded pink wand beneath the birch tree raises my suspicions. Look closer dear sleuth. Upper right. Perhaps a genre switch is in order here. Did my Fairy Godmother show up only to be kicked to the curb by Jack Frost? Or is the plot darker, more sinister, the scene of an abduction...or even murder?

     I'll give Precious Ramotswe at the No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency in Botswana a call. She has a fondness for pumpkins and quirky cases.

pumpkin quote from The Woman Who Walked in Sunshine by Alexander McCall Smith