Sweet Daydreams

 I have always sought to create another world.  A fantastic place of harmony and enchantment where dreams come alive.

Time stands still in the multiverse of my imagination.  Colors deepen and take on a vivid hue.  All is one and right and the atmosphere is steeped in loving peace and understanding. A wondrous a place comes into view.  I have been here before and every time I visit it becomes more beautiful.

It is a place where

 vines of crimson and gold grow over ancient  walls.  Ruins of stone spires shoot crazily out of a dense forest of deep green.   The sun is bright and warm and has just begun to fill the sky.  I take in a deep breath of the cool breeze coming from the west. The air holds the promise of the day.  It is a bright spring morning filled with fresh wonder.     

Rolling hills of emerald, soft and mossy give way to sweet-smelling apple orchards sprinkled with tiny white blossoms.  The warm spring rain tickles my eyelids and caresses my face.

I walk down a slate path into a soft misty velvet wood..  Sunbeams dance and play with shadows in the whispering breeze. Scarlet tipped hummingbirds dart through the leaves of the trees drinking in the honeysuckle nectar of the tall pineapple sage.

 I delight in the riotous songs of a forest full of life.  Flowers of a million hues dot the landscape.  Tiny white butterflies flutter and frolic among them. Visiting each one in a true perfection of form.  

The sun rises high in the sky of deep cerulean and cotton white.  I lie in the grass and gaze up in wonderment, not a care in the world….My mind begins to wander and the hours drift away…in senseless abandon… and dream a dream inside a dream….

Sweet Dreams    Strawberryindigo.

 

Love Thy Neighbor?

Love

Image by aftab. via Flickr

I saw a scene today.   It was a small moment, a common everyday boring kind of moment but it changed me and the way I will view people and life in general from now on.

The woman down the street, my neighbor and “Nemesis”, Mrs. Wheatgrass. A person I have written of before. A neurotic, stressed out person who reminds me of sun-baked straw.   If you have not yet heard of Mrs. Wheatgrass, you will.  She is a story and a half unto herself.

Today though I saw Mrs. Wheatgrass in a different light…

A pest control truck in the neighborhood is a dreaded sight indeed and when I saw the sight earlier today, I felt a small panic.  YIKES! Pests!  The bright green truck, with the environmental message on the side looked nice, and responsibly green and expensive. It was parked in front of the Wheatgrass house.

I laughed a little laugh as I imagined high-strung and snooty Mrs. Wheatgrass on a chair screaming down at a mouse. Or worse.

..And speak of the Devil…there she was.  She was walking the pest guy to his pest truck.  She did not look happy. She looked majorly stressed out.  Her straw-colored hair was practically standing on end as she listened to the pest guy talk.  He kept pointing to her roof and every time he did she looked sicker and sicker.

By the time he got to the shoulder shrugging portion at the end, she appeared frantically frazzled.  For a moment I felt glee.  A little part of me felt happy at her misfortune.  I hate to admit it but that is what happened. 

It didn’t feel right and as I said it lasted but a moment but that was enough. I started to think back…where had we gone wrong?  I remember when we first spied each other, the day she moved in 6 years ago.  It was like a scene out of a spaghetti western, I could swear I heard the music genius of Ennio Morricone in the background.   She walked past and we just stared at each other, not a word was uttered. We just stared. 

I guess I should have welcomed her to the neighborhood. I really have no excuse. I could say that I suffer from social phobia or that it’s not wise to talk to strangers; both are true but honestly, I think it was because of the way she looked at me.  She made me feel uncomfortable standing on my own front porch.  Her thin lips curled up in a sneer.  I couldn’t help but feel that I had wronged her in some way.

We eventually spoke and over the years and have had some strange conversations.  She likes to approach me with her odd and neurotic household problems and I think she expects me to have all the answers.

When I don’t have the insight she wants she turns on me and a whole new round of snubs and snide remarks begin.  I know this sounds paranoid, but once in a while I get these strange looks from her family.  I think she talks about me to them, I just get these vibes.

All this makes me feel bad.  I don’t want to be her friend.   I am Strawberryindgo, she is Mrs. Wheatgrass.  We have nothing in common…..I do however hate the mean looks she gives me.  I have feelings.

It’s easy to be nice to someone who likes you….on the other hand…it’s not difficult at all to hate someone back who hates you first.  It’s natural, its human nature.  I tried to justify how I felt.

Why should I care if she has something nesting in her roof? So what?  If her roof is falling apart and I know she needs a new one and can’t afford it. She has never been nice to me and makes snide remarks to me whenever she can.

I know if she saw me in the same situation as she is now, she would have no sympathy for me. I know she would use the occasion to come over and grill me, she is that type. It seems more and more people these days are that type.  It’s like they are waiting for an excuse to “take it out on someone else.”  They take pleasure in others misfortune and feed on negativity.  I don’t want to be like them. I refuse to be like them!

It was at that moment I realised that I must be stronger than any negativity that Mrs. Wheatgrass or anyone else could throw at me. Maybe if I look deep inside myself I can find some sympathy for one such as she although she has none for me.

Niceness begets niceness and hatred begets hatred.  It is difficult to turn the tide, but now I see the importance in trying. If I can’t get along with my bitchy neighbor, who can get along in this world?  

Although she doesn’t know it, Mrs. Wheatgrass taught me a lesson today.  I don’t think I could actually ever “love” her nor do I think I could even like her, she is after all, Mrs. Wheatgrass.  But I will try my damnest…..

….and so this brings me to a quote by “Tricky Dick” and how fitting….

“Always remember, others may hate you, but those who hate you don’t win unless you hate them. And then you destroy yourself.”

Richard M. Nixon (1974)

Have a great day!   Strawberryindigo.

  

And here’s to you, Mr. Starbucks

I must confess; at one time I was a latte whore.  I didn’t care where I got it or how I got It, as long as I got my Chai latte.  It is a weakness of mine that I enjoy, this love for Chai latte; it was love at first sip and its been going strong for a few years.

At first it was a no-brainer; there was no question as to where to get this coveted drink of mine..Starbucks.  This is the place for me, I decided.  It’s a bit corporate, but so what? I know what I’m getting there.

At Starbucks everyone seems so upwardly mobile, so cute in their colorful new clothes..people with jobs and busy lives.  Even the slackers types were busy clicking away with the free Wi Fi.  Everyone was happy and smiled and were friendly.  I guess that is easy to do when you have a job and extra money for fancy coffees.

I like the music in Starbucks, they play all types.  It is the only place where I will hear old jazz tunes from the 40’s my eclectic taste perks to attention on that….Billie Holiday and caffeine?  What more do you want?

We started to frequent a particular one, M.M. and I.  It seemed the lattes were extra good over there.   Frothy and creamy with a swirl of spicy…I am in Latte heaven!

One bright late summer morning last year something happened that at first didn’t seem so bad but then as time went on it got worse.  What I am talking about here doesn’t  sound so bad until you’ve lived it…I really don’t want to offend anyone by what I say.  Especially this group of people but in order I tell my story I must…

I can’t put it any other way than this; It was the cops.  We would walk in and there they were, a pack of them. At first I thought; cool, I have always thought of the police as people too, and I have always appreciated the risks they take everyday for us.  I am not a criminal, I have no record and I should have nothing to fear from the police. They are brave men and women who serve and protect……….but quite the suspicious bunch.

 I felt it right away.  I looked at them as people, they looked at me like a criminal.  I am really very harmless looking, I bet most of them could take me in a fight.  It’s obvious.  So I am surprised when one looks at me like a potential threat.  I suppose they are trained to  be like that, and it’s probably necessary in their book.  But I can’t help but be uncomfortable. 

It is this reason why they are a “they” and everyone else, including the criminals and me are: “We.”  It is also the reason we tried a new place down the street; A laid-back appearing hippie type establishment by the name of Tom and Mary’s.  A picture of Tom and Mary graced the sign out front, they looked so nice.. I liked them instantly, even before we met.  There was tie-dye everywhere and plastic chairs to sit on.  The inside looked like the outside but I thought; so what. 

No more cops and no more corporate guilt.  I am on the edge now, part of the anti establishment crowd …. A latte revolutionist!  Aha!

It was a bit downhill after that though; Tom appeared at least twenty years older in person than he did on the sign.  He didn’t smile or even look at us at all.  He muttered at us while Mary made the lattes.  She wasn’t much friendlier.  M.M.’s attempts at some sort of witty banter with her fell flat.  We could tell she didn’t take fools gladly. Mary was not the laid back hippie princess on the sign, she was a mean old witch.  Yikes!  The lines on her face told the story.

The place was empty and silent as a tomb.   A pimply toucan faced man with a tiny little dog walked in and chatted it up with Tom and Mary who, apparently liked him better than us.  I got the impression that this place didn’t cotton to outsiders who looked like Starbucks people.  I think it was my purple lipstick and Prada bag but I didn’t feel a part of the whole groove anymore.. My dreams of being a revolutionist dashed, I sighed and tried the drink.  It was good, I wanted it to be damn awful, I wanted to spit it out and run back to Starbucks. right then and there. 

We went back a couple of times but could no longer stand it. I am glad to say we returned to  the corporate giant and then I understood the reason for some of their success.  A Smile. The people at Starbucks seemed friendlier and happier. We told those kind people of our ordeal and they welcomed us back with open arms.

And the cops?  They seemed friendlier and happier too.  And different.  Two lady cops at the back booth last time.  I secretly drank a toast to justice and lattes and the two ladies in blue totally ignored us.

Have an excellent day!

Strawberryindigo.

 

Blue-eyed cat update: The return of Jacky

A blue-eyed stranger came to us this past July, we named him Jacky and he’s quite the cat.  I’ve written of him before, this blue-eyed handsome cat and how he came to live with us.  Much has happened since I last wrote of him. Jacky is turning out to be such an amazing cat, so amazing in fact I think he merits an update…

When last I wrote of him, Jacky was living in two houses, torn between myself and a foul-mouthed harpy down the street I’ve been calling Sally.  Jacky would spend days with me in the garden, playing and napping and eating some good cat food.   At night he would return to Sally.  We had this unspoken shady agreement  between us.  I don’t think she liked it anymore than I did, but there it was.

Untill one night about two or three weeks ago.  Jacky spent the night in the studio, curled up into a cute white furry ball on my writing chair.  I left him there, and when I returned in the morning, he was still there asleep.

I was pleased but I didn’t think much of it.  Jacky is a bit of a rogue and a wanderer. He’s there one moment , gone the next.  Except this time he didn’t go, he stayed with me all day, following me around as I watered the flowers.  That night, again he stayed and he has stayed every night since.

I know this sounds crazy but I think he is fascinated with water, running water.  He prefers to drink out of our leaky bath tap.  You can hear him jump in the bathtub: Plop.  Sometimes he knocks over the shampoo. Sometimes he surprises me in the middle of the night. Every time he gets his sweet little face all wet and every time he is so cute!   I know we should fix the drip, but how can we now?

I really knew this cat loved water when I was watering my lawn the other morning with a sprinkler and he was gingerly drinking from the arc of the spray.  What a cat!

Jacky, our nutty feline also loves to go for walks with his favorite humans.  Whenever M.M. takes the old pug out, Jacky tags along, trailing behind, intrigued with the whole process.  He never wants to be left out on all the fun.  He waits on the front porch, sunning himself and the moment any one of us steps out, he’s there.  He walks ahead of us and then proceeds to roll all over the ground wiggling all over the place.   He is  very irresistible when he does this and we have to stop and pet him.

We go out on special walks, just he and I.  We don’t go far, just around the block but it gives us just enough time to get into some pretty deep conversations.  I would ask him his opinion about this and that; The economy, global warming,  whether I’m too old to color my hair purple or we should take advantage of these historic low rates and refinance the house.  He just meows at me but I get his message.  He’s a pretty smart cat.

Really, he is smart, he sits and watches me make dinner every night now. He just sits on top of a high stool and stares intently. It’s as if he is trying to memorize everything I am doing so he can do it later.  Maybe one morning he will surprise us with breakfast.  He certainly is full of surprises.

Jacky has gained some weight and is getting a belly, but he still is in top shape. I have to give it to Mr. Friskies for that. I am not endorsing anything, the Friskies company is not paying me a dime, but I must say without a doubt, Since I’ve been feeding him the “seafood sensations” Jacky’s coat is so soft and luxurious and so white.  He is also the most muscular cat I’ve ever encountered. I guess it’s all the exercise he gets, walking and skillfully hunting moths by moonlight.

I think moths are attracted to him because he literally glows in the dark.  He sits under the light and the moths come to him.  What a trippy cat. Jacky has definitely made life around here more interesting.

Hope you have an adorably “purrfect” day.

Strawberryindigo.

Hey You! An Indigo Rant

Crosswalk sign

Hey you…Yes you..Can you hear me?  I guess you don’t but I’m going to tell you anyway.  Maybe someone smarter than you may listen and learn something….

We almost hit you today, my friend and I.  We almost plowed right into you with his dark green Honda.  You could have been seriously hurt or worse.  You have no idea how close you came to getting your nice young red blood spilled all over the street.

If it wasn’t for my friend’s lightning quick reflexes and some kick ass breaks you would have been toast today.

I can imagine how your parents would have felt.  You getting hit on your way to school, at the start of a new school year.  Maybe they saw you off this morning, maybe they watched you with pride as you walked off to school.  You are quite tall for your age, which I suspect is about 16.  You with your dark hair and black clothes must have cut quite the figure as you walked off, navy blue backpack, jammed full of books on your back.

Being a parent of a 16-year-old myself, I understand how it’s hard to let go and trust that your kid is going to do the right thing.  You teach what you can and hope for the best.  I’m sure your parents taught you how to cross the street.  I bet they told you to use a cross walk, look both ways and don’t just walk out into moving traffic.  But yet this is just what you did.

You walked into oncoming traffic, without a care in the world…You never even looked up, or you would have seen us.   You, stooped over with your hood covering the tell-tale white cord and ear buds of your IPOD.. you never even heard us, honking at you…you never heard the screech  that the tires made as we stopped just in the nick of time.  We came so close..you came so close, and you never noticed. 

I wanted to stop and get out of the car and chase you down to give you a stern talking to.  I wanted you to know how serious it all is, this life business.  I’ve lived long enough to realise that life is fragile and fate can turn on a dime.  One second of stupidity can make you pay big time for a lifetime.

I know you probably made it to school, the very same school my son goes to, you might even know him.  And you probably made it safely home after school today as my son did. All the while never knowing how close you came to your life changing forever, and not just your life, but your parents lives, who most likely bought you that IPOD and would never forgive themselves for it, or the lives of your friends and family members who would miss you, not to mention, my friend who would have hit you, he never would have been the same either….

And so to anyone who is listening tonight…hug your kid a little tighter tonight, I will.

Stay safe,  Strawberryindigo.

Crazy Neighbor Stomp Down

Idealized mixed nuts, USDA

Image via Wikipedia

Oh what a crazy day in my little neck of the woods..Yikes!  My crazy drunken neighbor was in rare form, he had his car radio turned up and it was blasting the top 40 by 7 a.m.

That man is spirited I must tell you; he started yelling around noon.  The usual “Yeah!” and “Whooah!”.. the music got louder and louder.  As strange as this sounds; I like the guy’s taste in music, so I am enjoying myself out in the front, doing some light weeding and some casual seed harvesting, when the  dried out wheat straw  neurotic from next door shows up.

She asks me about the crazy drunken neighbor, as if I am responsible for the man’s behavior.   “I don’t know why he’s like that, I guess he is crazy.”  She asks me if I have called the cops on him and then asks  “What is my take on this?”   She has this notion that somehow I can resolve this for her because “I have lived here longer.” ( me,11 years her, 6 years)

I informed her of a time I called the cops, only to have them show up at my house, talk to me in right in front and all the while pointing directly at the guy before they talk to him for 2 minutes, then leave.  I tell her that I have an uneasy truce with the guy and I don’t want to ruin it. 

She looks at me like I am crazy.  I suggest that she, Mrs wheat straw call the cops.  She doesn’t like it, she mentions my dying tree in a snide manner, I tell her I’m trying to save the poor thing.  Just then like if on cue; We hear a “Yeah!”  She sighs and scampers off and I am left to my seed heads.

I was busy for most of the day; doing Mom stuff and gardening.  I could hear the party getting louder and louder.  Crazy drunken guy drumming on something and then he starting yelling out words but I couldn’t make out what they were, through all the slur.  I crept up closer and listened..It was “America!”  “God bless America!”  How touching and how patriotic.  This got a laugh out of me and the day progressed and eventually everything became quiet.

He must be napping, I mused and went to make dinner.

I am almost ready to put everything on the table when Act Two begins; It starts with a flurry of loud explosions (Fireworks) and ends a few minutes later with “You dirty F***ing Whore!”  over and over..Then bottles break and the roar of an engine, someone has driven off, I don’t want to look.

We turn up the music (Beatles, Abbey Road) and eat our dinner (chicken and rice, Yum)  I notice that it’s getting dark as the sounds of a click clicking of someone running in high heels tells me the party isn’t quite over yet.

 The night plays out without further incidents, or so I thought….I stayed up late writing about my “Unblinking eye of truth” post and chatting online.  It was about 1:30a.m. when I heard a noise, I didn’t know what it was and opened my front door and looked out.  There was the crazy neighbor’s adult son, I’ll call him Pudgy, kicking over my trash can!  He looks right at me and says with glee; “Call the cops.”

My stupid temper makes me run out and tell him to “Pick that up right now!”  He keeps going.  M.M. drags me inside…I am totally worked up by now and I stay up and drink coffee till I pass out……and then…Good Morning: it’s time to start the day and I’m off on a new adventure!  Have a great day!    Strawberryindigo.