Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Happy holidays

This year, the gathering was at my place. Ever since my mother in law passed on, it was always at my place. My husband, being the oldest of the three siblings often offers our place as the venue.

Winter wonderland

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Maybe I should begin now

I think I have enough stuff to begin my project. I have to start at some point don't I?It was something I wanted to do since I quit my job. It is just a simple thing that does not need a real brain.
Before I go and hibernate to do my project, I would like to wish everybody a merry and joyful end of year celebration from us Mr and Mrs Beach.

Friday, December 07, 2007

Of a grown-up Nutkin

I guess Nutkin the happy hopping squirrel has grown up after all. I am glad he made through last winter and through spring and summer. Now, in the late Fall I see him still at his antics. There is this hickory tree next to my deck in front of the house that every year made plenty of nuts. This is the tree that Nutkin and his furry cousins like to play and collect nuts from. They say hickory nuts (the meat in it) is second to none. They taste better than walnut or pecan. The only problem we human have is that the meat in it is so little and not worth cracking them up. Not with the squirrels which have little sharp teeth that can nibble the thick hard nut in seconds to get to the tasty meat.

Recently I saw Nutkin playing chase me around the tree with his cousins and friends. It was fascinating to see them chasing each other. They circle the tree trunk by hanging on to each other's tail. they go round and round up and down. They look so fat in their shiny brown coat. Their bright eyes look so intelligent and so happy.

They like to tease the dogs. Now that Buddy has the whole front yard to himself, the squirrels have to make a detour every time they want to get to the hickory tree. They just run near enough to excite Buddy and jump on to the tree. That makes buddy mad and that makes Nutkin and his cousins and friends jubilant. I could see that Nutkin and his friends were applauding themselves. I guess danger makes life more exciting even to the critters.

Saturday, December 01, 2007

of being a woman

being a woman is really really difficult, don't you think?. Actually it became difficult the moment you realized that you are a female, a girl. There were all kinds of expectations from you. You have to dress like a girl, you have to behave like a girl etc. etc. I still cannot figure it out yet. When I was young, and have not reached puberty yet, I was playing with kids my age, swimming in the irrigation canals climbing peoples' jambu trees and catching fighting fish from morning until dusk.

Then I went to an all girls school. I made friends and expected to be just like my old friends, but when you get to mix with girls of different ages, things were different.
Things like you used to do, holding hands while walking was frowned upon. You were looked at differently when you shared your bed with your buddy. How could a year difference from your previous life be so different. Going to school tuck shop and the gym together were thought that you were weird. That was sad. Very sad for a 12 year old who did not understand why others talked about her and her friend. Nobody came forward to explain why. Later she learnt that straight girls don't have another girl as a close friend. Then what is a straight girl?

Then when you get older and in college or university, you were expected to have a boy friend. There must be something wrong with you if you do not grab a boy friend in the first week of your life in a college. I was devastated for there was not a single boy in my college I wanted to hook up with. I wanted some friends not a single senior boy to hang with. I had some friends though who were in the same boat so we sort of have a 'gang'. That saved me for a while. Don't get me wrong, I did go out a few times with someone, but I was not comfortable to have myself labeled as so and so girl. All I wanted were a group of friends, sincere in friendship and have no hidden agenda.

Peer pressure was very strong. If you are staying in your room on a Saturday night, you are labeled as 'poor girl' that no body wanted to take out. By your final year you were expected to graduate with a steady boyfriend who would be you husband. If you did not find a potential husband in your university years, you were doomed.

I was one. I did not find anyone I wanted to be with for eternity. Hey, I wanted one, but none came close to my criteria. I do have plenty of men friends that I wanted them to be my friends.

After you got your first job the pressure for you to get a partner in life was even stronger. All kinds of pressures came your way. They came from your friends, your family and from anybody. This is the real one. When you start rooming with another girl, you are thought to have unhealthy relationship. Of course as 2 people living in the same house, you share a lot of things in common. You go shopping together, you go to eat together, you go to see movies together. You take holidays together. Why not, you live together.

Now all the well meant friends you think you have are looking at your relationship from a different angle. They start to piece things together. They make assumption that since you never have a lasting relationship with a man, you must be on the other side of the wall. You are different you prefer feminine relationship. What is wrong with preferring to have close friendship with a person of the same gender?

Then again, once you got married, you are pressured to have children, no matter what. Nobody cares about your personal wish. When I said that I did not want any children, nobody believed me. Women want to be mothers, they want children. Well, get this, This woman does not.

Then there are divorced women. They were made to look like they were useless and society want to punish them like they deserved to be divorced. Then they were made to be targets of all accusations. They would be out to steal your husband, they have to be watched. What kind of evil thoughts people who consider themselves good have.

It is hard to be a woman in a blinkered society.