Wednesday June 6 2012


Heavy dreams filled with anxiety and colorful scenarios.

Waking up around noon to the sound of serene wind chimes tinkling out on the lanai. This air mattress was surprisingly comfortable.

Two Hard Boiled Eggs. Cantaloupe. Orange Juice.

My mom and I hop into the GMC and go out on the town.


We drive by a lone house in the middle of a field, it’s yard cluttered with kids toys, a trampoline, and other miscellaneous junk.

I comment, “Sometimes I imagine myself one day living in a house like that, married with lots of kids running around.”


Me: “It doesn’t matter where you’re at you’re always thinking about the other side.”


Mom: “Discontentment drives you to something better.”


Me: “Why don’t you have a tape deck? Mom, everyone’s moved on to cassettes.”

Mom: “No, that’s from the dark ages!” 


We make a quick stop at her work to drop off something. I’m introduced to her boss/coordinator. As we’re leaving the lady says, “Nice meeting you.”

I’ve already walked out the door but reply with a, “Yeah.”

My mom assures her that I’m “a man with many words.”

Lady: “Better than a man with a lot of words.”


Then we stop at our favorite local market that sells pretty much anything you can think of. We stock up on vegetables and fruits. It’s pouring rain outside the awning. We buy a big bag of Cajun Boiled Peanuts and stand there slurping them up. Add some Salt n Vinegar Chips with an Avocado and Raspberry Lemonade, and we’ve got lunch.

My mom insists we stop in this Latino Supermarket.

Mom: “It’s like a field trip. They have so many interesting things in here.”

Inside is a plethora of produce, some things I never thought existed, a meat market with things like beef tongue and pork products that include any and every part of the pig, and a platter-style restaurant with authentic Puerto Rican food and pastries.

Me: “This place is awesome. I really wish we had one down the street from my house.”

Then a visit to the Goodwill thrift store. Browsing. I find a vintage mirror picture of a Corvette.


In the car. Talking about Kristin I explain, “She has adorable eyes. She has eyes that could kill.”

Mom: “Sounds dangerous.”


Picking up some groceries at Publix.


Back at the house. Mom and I double team it in the kitchen and cook up a quick dinner: Barbecue Garlic Salmon with Sautéed Vegetables (Mushrooms, Peppers, and Onions) and Rice. We sit down at the table with Jimmy and Grandma Carr and enjoy the fruits of our labor.

Afterwards, everyone leaves for the Wednesday night church service. I stay behind and enjoy quiet time on the lanai. Reclining in the rocking chair. House plants. Ceramic lighthouses. Butterfly glass crafts. The beautiful sounds of crickets, birds, and various Floridian land creatures serenade this back patio. Tranquil. It’s refreshing to enjoy nature without the irritating jet noise from back home. The thick Florida vegetation has much to offer as an alternative. I look down at the desk my mom reserves for her biblical studies and prayer time. There’s a quote she scribbled down on a piece of paper...

We rarely change until our pain exceeds our fear of change.

I put on some music and stretch my body out...


They return. Tinkering on Grandma’s old guitar, a 1947 Gibson.


Sharing Coffee and Flan with my mom.

And then a late night walk. Before we step out of the house Jimmy is massaging her back standing up. They share a few laughs. I snicker a little bit as I pass...

Mom: “What?”

Me: “You guys are still in love.”

Mom: “Well somebody needs to be.”


Outside, we walk through the neighborhood up and down the streets around corners, sometimes coming to dead ends. I pull out a clove to smoke...

Mom: “You don’t smoke very often do you?”

Me: “No. These are just for special occasions.”

Mom: “You need to be careful doing that.”

Me: “Quit being a mom.”

Mom: “I’m telling you.”

Me: “You know me. I’m a smart boy. I know how to work this world.”


We catch up on our respective realizations and lessons in life – observations and philosophies.

Me: “I think that’s the trick to life is trying to eliminate the people that consume you.”

She attempts to quote a poet, “If it’s draining more than it’s uplifting then it’s putting dirt on your wings. So people that put dirt on your wings they hinder your progress.”

Mom: “We’re supposed to be like Christ. We should be changing the world but we don’t really. We try to affect in our little...”

Me: “...In our bubbles.”


Me: “Everyone’s looking for a purpose. Everyone is in pursuit of the truth. It’s disguised sometimes. I look at people I’ve surrounded myself with. It’s a little different. There’s a lot of irony and a lot of care-freeness. People are just having fun. People are just making fun of the world rather than being a part of anything in particular.”

Mom: “It’s almost their way of protecting themselves by, you know, making it seem like I’m care-free...”


Me: “I just look at myself. I’ve always been a very adaptable person. I don’t know why, like even in high school I just adapted to anybody.”

Mom: “Well, you know that’s me too.”

Me: “I got it from you.”


Me: “By loving others as yourself that you will be achieving a purpose of what a human being is supposed to be. Human beings are about connecting with other human beings. That’s what life is about...”

Mom: “Nobody says I just love me. But the truth is we do. We love our self. We love what we want, what we need. And that’s what that word means. It means that I should love you the way that I care for me and what I need and I should care for you and what you need. If we all did that and loved God that way and loved each other that way...”

Me: “The problem with this is you build up this expectation to be this totally self-less person...and no one actually is they’re just trying to be.”

Mom: “Just striving.”

Me: “And all the people around you that know what you profess to believe will look at you as a hypocrite.” 

Mom: “People have been wounded and if they are not healed from their wound... wounded people wound people. They lash out the way they have to. They protect themselves the way they have to. It’s a protective mechanism. I think we have periods, stages of healing. I definitely went through some kind of a rejuvenation healing. But let me say this...I believe we are connected to certain people for a reason. I do believe that I’m a better person because of some of the things I’ve experienced over this past year. I’m healthier. I’m emotionally healthier...physically healthier. I believe it is a direct result of connection with different people.”


Towards the end of the walk we share entertaining stories about the strange and unique people we come across from our delivery/transport jobs.

Mangoes and Peaches in the kitchen.

Sleep at 3 a.m.

[i] All images by me.

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