Posts Tagged ‘graduation’

The last six months have been very busy for me. At times quite stressful.

The weekend of my daughter’s high school graduation (she graduated on the Friday) seemed especially busy. My husband was preparing to fly back to India on the Sunday with Thumper (the infamous canine) in cargo. We were worried about the mutt. And doing a bunch of last minute things.

We drove them to the airport (an hour from our home) hours earlier than the flight to ensure all paperwork in order.

It was hot. But it’s always hot in Malaysia.

And I was sweating. But I was always sweating in Malaysia.

Had to rush home from the airport because a friend was in from Australia and we needed to meet a group for dinner.

It was rush, rush and rush.

Got home but no time for a shower. What to do?

Brushed my hair and put it up in a clip. Some lip color.

I stunk. Just being honest. So I grabbed a face cloth and soap and cleaned under my arms.

Because I smelled like a person who had labored all day in the Malaysian heat without deodorant. For the record I do wear deodorant. Sometimes it fails me. In Malaysia.

At least I’m aware of it.

Hightailed it out of the house with my daughters and our friends who lived two doors down to meet up with our visiting friends at an Indian restaurant in the city.

It ended up being a lovely evening. The young folks went home right after dinner. My daughters had an early flight out in the morning. My friend and I went with the visitors for a couple of drinks after dinner.

Not a late night.

Arrived home and readied myself for bed. Now, thankfully, I only smelled like Indian food and wine.

My eldest, who sleeps with me when she’s at home and my husband is not, mumbled a few words like, “How was it?”

I took that as my cue for conversation.

She’s not always a fan. Because I’m sometimes pillow to pillow, “Remember your friend, Melissa, from second grade? Whatever happened to her?” and the like.

So I said, “Was a good night with the friends.”

And then continued conversing.

She said, “Not tonight, Mom. Early flight tomorrow.”

Totally respected that and snuggled into my pillow for a good night’s sleep.

Few minutes later I hear, “Mom?”


“When we came back from airport did you shower?” she asked.

“No! You know I didn’t have time for that. Had to get downtown. I just cleaned under my arms with soap and water.”

She continued, “With the face cloth that’s on the sink?”



Okay, I laughed out loud even though I was nearly in slumber town. Couldn’t help myself.  Total belly laugh.

I said, “I’m going to blog about this one day.”

She replied, “Be more embarrassing for you though.”

I retorted, “Not really. It was my face cloth. Who uses someone else’s face cloth????”

Wishing you all a fun weekend! With a belly laugh or two! I promise to be better at updating the blog!











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My father always paid his own way. Just the way he was. He’d certainly pay the way of others but he always paid his own way.

I liked that about him. And I ended up marrying a man who is exactly the same in that regard.

Last May, he and my mom flew out to Northern California for Rory’s graduation from university. He didn’t usually insist on things. But he insisted on being present for her high school graduation and then her university graduation. I met them there. It was a great week. We probably ran them ragged taking in all of the sights. Chinatown, the Golden Gate Bridge and park, the Painted Ladies, the Marina, the Wharf, Napa Valley and loads more packed into the busy days.

We used the BART to get into San Francisco from Berkeley. But there were other times when we needed to hail a taxi. Not always easy so my daughter used the Uber app on her phone. For those not familiar with Uber it is a car, taxi, or ride-share service. Your credit card is on file. You can see what driver is closest to your location and then order the car. The name of the driver, picture of person, type of car, etc. is all available to you. No payment need exchange hands. It’s billed to your card.

Dad struggled with this. My daughter would order a car to bring them back to the hotel each evening. And he’d be fumbling around for his wallet trying to pay someone. Anyone. The driver, my daughter or me.

Rory would say, “Don’t worry about it, Papa. I got it. It’s going on the card.”

He did not like that at all. Or this whole Uber thing. He sputtered about it. He was not comfortable with his college aged granddaughter paying for his taxi fares.

After graduation I headed back to Malaysia. Rory accompanied her grandparents back to Rhode Island and stayed with them for three weeks.

She told me that one morning she woke up and went to have breakfast. Papa’s soft-boiled eggs. Always perfect. Mom took care of the fried eggs but the soft-boiled ones were Dad’s specialty. He would even take the tops of the eggs off for us. Tap, tap, tap with the edge of a butter knife.

Egg cup that Annie bought Papa a few years ago.

Egg cup that Annie bought Papa a few years ago.

That morning, under her place mat on the kitchen table, there was a crisp one hundred-dollar bill.

Rory was like, “Oh no, Papa!”

He said, “Look, I don’t want to hear another word about it. That’s final.”

That’s just the way he was.

My Dad- May 2014-Berkeley, California

My Dad- May 2014-Berkeley, California

I’m going to miss his soft-boiled eggs in the morning. I’m going to miss him taking off the top portion of the shell for us. I’m going to miss his old school ways. I’m going to miss just the way he was.

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No one knows your child better than you. You know their capabilities. Their strengths and their weaknesses. You know your child best.

Yes, sometimes we question ourselves. I remember my mother (a trained nurse and some experience with babies) telling me about visiting the pediatrician with a concern when my older brother was born. Even the most experienced can question themselves when it comes to their own children.

Dr. Orson looked at her and said, “Mother, you know your child best.”

It’s true. He was right.


My Rory, six years old, first grade, and a standardized test. 1998.




This test did not describe my first-born daughter. If it did I would have been fine with it. I would have expected it. But it did not fit with what I already knew. I was upset. With questions flying around my head.

I immediately telephoned my mother. She laughed at my panicked state and said, “Tsk, nothing could be further from the truth. You know that!”

She was right. I did know that. But for a few moments I had allowed a piece of paper to make me question myself. One day of testing in first grade!

Fast forward.

Rory, twenty-two years old, Arabic and History major, completed in four years while also taking off a semester. 2014.


I am delighted to inform you that you have been selected for a 2014-2015 Fulbright U.S. Student Award to Jordan. The Fulbright Program is the flagship international educational exchange program of the United States.  You will represent the country as a cultural ambassador while you are overseas, helping to enhance mutual understanding between Americans and the people in Jordan. You will join over 100,000 Fulbright U.S. Student Program alumni who have undertaken grants since the program began in 1948.


Don’t question what you already know. It’s not always easy. But you know your child best.




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