Selected Excerpts from the Tules Telephone Directory

So my son is about to turn 11.

Eleven.

Years old.

And yesterday – the last week really – has been the most interesting array of moments. He’s right on the cusp, between being a child and being a pre-teen. But he’s been pinging back and forth, sometimes reminding me he’s still a kid and sometimes seeming like a new person. It’s amazing watching them transition; their little systems are updating before our eyes.

Things that have happened in the past TWO days:

(1) Ezra rode the Boomerang at Six Flags – a “high thrill” ride and his first big one.

(2) Ezra rode the kiddie train made of little jeeps.

(3) Ezra walked around looking like this:

Who Is This Kid(4) At another point in the same day, he looked like this:

The Flash and the Penguin(5) Ezra tried to drown me in the swimming pool by fighting with me in the deep end.

(6) Ezra had innumerable tea parties with me at the bottom of the pool and gave me kisses.

This is my life now. And I love it.

Let’s Me And You Make A Reunion

What is there to say right now, I mean, really. What could I say that wouldn’t simply be responding to the intentional distraction of this rotten, wormwood system we’re so afraid to burn? Nothing. And since I’m exhausted of just seeing my twitter and facebook feeds – even when I agree – I thought, what can I talk about? To what memories do I keep returning?

IMG_0545

Erm. But, you know…except in my memory my son isn’t making ridiculous faces. Which, let’s be honest, is almost never. He’s nearly 11, y’all, and I cannot.

So we’re not all facebook friends so you wouldn’t know that at the beginning of last month (WAS IT REALLY SO RECENTLY?!) I was in Portland to see my sister Jen-the-Twin and her my boys! Of whom I apparently feel squicky about publicly posting pictures! So there’s that ridiculous picture of Ez and I before or after we had an amazing easter pie from …wait for it…Paiku. A Portland food truck. That serves pies, both meat and dessert. Called Paiku. Because OF COURSE. Portland gon’ Portland, y’all.

But if you’ve clicked that link and gone to my sister’s style blog, you already know why Portland exists. For thrifting. And as someone who has drooled over Jen’s various (and numerous) finds, she did what any loving sister would do and hooked. me. up.

Yes, please, $3 jeans. Snatch that, $1.75 skirt that made me feel like a kindergarten teacher from Maui. I bought several-many skirts and they are all wonderful and I have worn them all and there are no pictures BUT.*

The dresses.

IMG_0616This is the picture I’m supposed to show you. Because aside from Josh being asleep which is completely unavoidable, look. LOOK. But let me tell you a secret.

IMG_0614This is my actual favorite. Not because it’s blurry, DADDY. (I know you’re reading this.) And not because my husband is totally hilarious. But because WILL YOU PLEASE LOOK AT THIS DRESS?! And, on the very off chance that you are not breakdancing in solidarity with me right now over this almost criminal and obscene gift (did I mention my twin is EVERYTHING?)….I can’t make you love me, if you don’t. You can’t make your heart feel…something it won’t. But there’s the door.

IMG_0619This was super expensive. I literally paid $9.99 for it – full price, y’all – but I mean. And then. Because like.

Right?

Portland. You sly little rodent, burrowing into my heart and making me consider things I shouldn’t.

And this post wouldn’t be complete without mentioning the lovely Mother Murphy, who took me thrifting in her corner of Quebec last week and who just gets me.

Thrifting does the body good.

*Okay, there is something that I found that LITERALLY (nope) set the rain on fire but I refuse to mention it until I have an accompanying picture because I cataplexy-ed OUT in that thrift shop. Also I need to picture more.

Everything She Wants

It’s about that time, no?

::5 days pass::

::and then literally 3 weeks::

So yes, Jelena, the blogging got away from me. It would be easier if…. wow, that gif quickly becomes distracting… as I was saying: if I were an open book and could just tell you everything I’m doing, writing, et cetera, because the source material never ends. Mais alors. Instead, lemme tell you about the wonderfully random and completely inconsequential minutia of life.

So Josh and I are sitting in a doctor’s wait room this week and people-watching, as one does. First of all, I love the number of people who have a translator with them – and I mean that. I love living in culturally diverse places and what is more interesting to watch than the translator her/himself, navigating two cultures at once? I’ll tell you what. The obligatory old woman pretending to be slightly senile because she is here to win, kids.

Old Woman (OW) has arrived for her appointment.

Receptionist requests her medical card.

OW does not have.

Receptionist says she’ll reschedule her appointment.

OW will see doctor now.

Receptionist like, whu? Gimme the card then.

OW left the card at home. She sees doctor now.

Receptionist is tryna keep the bite out of her voice because the whole wait room can hear whether we want to or not and OW got salty immediatement. Receptionist insists that cards must be proffered.

OW: (verbatim) I don’t have it with me, what can we do? (Rhetorical) I’ll see doctor now.

OW steps. toward. hall.

Reception door opens, refusals are stated strongly.

OW does not understand what you are not understanding. She should’ve brought her card. She didn’t. She is not going home, y’all. She will see the doctor now. She will.

It’s at this point that 2nd receptionist decides to help out because perhaps his being a dude will change something?

It doesn’t.

OW figures out how to grease this wheel. Pulls out OPUS card. That one uses to ride public transportation.

Receptionists are silent. Because what?

OW: (verbatim) Visa. (Shows credit card… and then immediately puts it back in wallet.)

Receptionists are silent. Because where are we. What’s happening.

You guys I cannot wait to get to this age. Head full of white hair – seriously, her tress game was crushing it – and using a cane while simultaneously holding a huge parka, a purse, several bags and clearly this woman has her faculties is what I’m saying.

OW will TALK to the doctor. Final offer.

When the receptionists tell her the doctor is leaving for the day very soon they should really have anticipated her attempt to break for the hall again. They really should’ve. I did.

Receptionist AGAIN insists that OW will be rescheduled. At this point, OW’s indiscernible muttering is her strength. That and she clearly has nowhere else to be. She will stand at this counter all day.

Receptionist, loudly, because she knows that we know that she has been bested: Just have a seat.

I mean. Better luck next time, baby girl. OW knew what she came to do.

Holiday-ee!

It’s.

About.

To go.

Down.

By which of course, I mean my birthday – and all the Morrowpalooza bdays (Me, hubby, son) – are this coming week!

We had family in town to start off July and took a little trip to the Quebec City area, which was delightful! ::throws some pics atcha::

And in completely unrelated news: (a) new book!! and (b) APES.

Dawn. of the et cetera. SO. INTENSE.

Going again.

That is all.

Whatever Rhoda Wants

Rhoda gets…

Then Homer starts his voice-over and we see flashes of the ugliest car that ever put Powell out of business. ‘Member?

But no, so today I learned that when Rhoda decides to talk to you, by George talking shall be done! Who’s Rhoda, you’re probably asking. Just a lovely South African woman who moved to Montreal from Saskatchewan after going to the 1967 expo and who about four years ago went to California for about a week in order to attend a convention but she can’t remember what city. How long have you known Rhoda, you say? For about three minutes on the bus today.

Delightful older women make my day.

Today I also learned that the school board from which Ez is getting a transfer agreement (and in which he’s never gone to school but long story and it’s mostly just more “Oh brother, Montreal”) is just not as well oiled as the one to which he’s moving. Which is itself a blessing. I showed up to do some paperwork and they asked me to sit and they said they weren’t gonna call the person I was there to see because that person was gonna call them when that person got back from lunch. And then 45 minutes later, another receptionist came to relieve the first and promptly picked up the phone only to find said person had been back for like 30 minutes but also wasn’t the person I was supposed to see and why hadn’t the 1st receptionist gotten me the paperwork which was available the whole time. And for some reason, I just kept smiling at everyone. Guess I really had nothing pressing because I was just relaxing without a care in the world in that lobby. I don’t even know.

And finally – but absolutely not for the last time – my last name has been Morrow for 12 years, Montreal. I shan’t be changing that for you. Kindly stop asking, thank you.

Who finished a new short story? I finished a new short story!

If you wanna know more about (some of) my writing projects, check out my Writing page, friends.

Oh, Scipiooooooo!

So all of my world right now is my latest short story, my submissions and my sugar-butt Ezzie’s out-of-nowhere stint with the Montreal Opera. And since I don’t really discuss the former in detail, that last bit is all I can actually talk about of the subjects mentioned.¬† ::tosses rose petals::

I can’t even. A few years ago, I introduced my little boy – who already inherited my love of MGM classics, much to my delight – to Porgy & Bess. Well. To Sammy Davis Jr. singing selected tunes from P&B. And he loooooved it. We spent a ridiculous number of hours watching various duets of Bess You Is My Woman, some opera, some not, and then choosing our favorites. J’adore. So for him to suddenly (and I do mean suddenly – we found out the same day he started rehearsals) get cast was, in his words, mind-blowing. And we’ve just been having the best time.

As far as he knows, Ezzie plans to be a voice-acting zoologist when he grows up. I have no idea whether he’ll ever do anything like this again or when the opportunity would even arise. This seriously dropped in our laps (very, very short story) and we’re not actively pursuing but either way. The point is THIS is fun and exciting and my little boy is on cloud 9. I almost wish there were more than four performances left – including tonight’s! Have some pictures!

Aaaaand that’s pretty much it. I am so happy for him.

I Might Need Security

I know Montreal loves to bring the drama, but today on Decarie, it was a little much. It was the old guys’ turn, and they showed up in great form, ready to prove that you don’t have to be young and foolish to be foolish and just extra.

I mean, honestly, guy walking toward me who’s making super creeptastic uninterrupted eye contact while I look everywhere but directly into your gaze. When you wait until I’m a few steps away and raise your hand and slap it repeatedly – which I guess is supposed to energize me to the point of high-fiving you?! – I don’t know how fast or far to run. Because I’m a lady in a pink and white striped dress and I need you to treat me as such. Cross the street if you must, I’ll wait. Physical contact shan’t. It shall not.

Hey there, buddy who raced around me? I wasn’t gonna pick up that open bag of whatever it was sitting on that bench at the bus stop. I wasn’t gonna stick my hand in and start eating whatever it was. You win, friend. The mystery trash food is all yours. And no. He did not look like he’d fallen on hard times, nor was there any activity that would’ve made me suspect he might race up to a bag on a bench and start eating. Having done so, of course, I give him a pass. Because…a guy just ate out of an open bag on a bus stop bench on Decarie. The verdict is in.

Lastly, there was the old guy riding his bike super fast on the sidewalk. Toward me. And a family walking pretty much with me – which we won’t even question. They’re affectionate. So geezer on bike who starts aggressively swiping the air with his hand, which is apparently meant to make us get the heck out his way? Apparently, his voice did work – jury’s still out on the brakes sitchiation – because as he passed through us, face still tight in what I’d assumed was a disapproving grimace? “Have a good day, you guys!”

In a super sincere tone? After trying to mow us down with a seemingly homicidal snarl of misdirected hostility? ….k.

But don’t let any of that distract you from the bus that didn’t show or the metro that sat for 18 minutes. Because I certainly didn’t.

 

 

Steel Morrow…glias

So the hubs and I just celebrated our 11th wedding anniversary! (Sidebar for TRUF: Thank God for His grace, hallelujah and AMEN!) And this has been pretty exciting because for some reason – and let’s not argue with it, shall we? – the eleventh anniversary is steel.

O_O

That’s. AWESOME. For true. I mean, there are so many things you can do with that. Superman references. …And other stuff, I’m sure. I actually considered getting a bouquet of magnolias. And dipping them in steel. Because…diabetes, I guess. Anyway, I ended up going a different direction but I think we can all agree, it was a completely reasonable consideration.

And since I know you guys so well, I’m just gonna give ya whatcha really want. Pictures of us.

Hey Josh, 'member when your ring wouldn't go on.

Hey Josh, ‘member when your ring wouldn’t go on.

No matter what...ya gotta strut.

No matter what…ya gotta strut.

Love lift us up. Amiritie.

Love lift us up. Amirite.

<3 <3 <3

For serious, tho. Yay! Eleven years, one wonderful son, three countries, three graduations (Josh, you’re only in the lead for now!), a grillion pictures, innumerable memories and each other.

Someone said, “Here’s to eleven more!” …and while I totally get the sentiment, I think we’re gonna shoot a little higher. ;)

Jesus, Take The Wheel

Today’s my due date but not my birthday ’cause I shows up when I wont to, boiiiiiiii.

::ahem::

You know how kids wanna scare the ever-lovin’ crap outta you, all the time? You know?

Here are just a couple ways my super dependably cautious son has tried *not* to make it to his upcoming ninth birthday:

(1) Stick hand into ball dispenser at bowling alley.

Let’s just stop right there, right, because. Who. WHO. does that. Whodoesthat.

I was not present. By the time I heard about this, his hand was free, swollen and scuffed. And he was doing his Ezra-the-Confessor bit, which my father clearly didn’t see coming because he’d intended not to tell me until way later? MY CHILD WILL SPILL THE BEANS, DADDY. COME CORRECT. And having been told by the child who clearly wasn’t dead or missing said hand (which my dad thought a possibility and poor dear, he probably looked a lot like that owl at the time), I still almost passed. out. Don’t.

(2) Get bit in forehead by family dog.

Okay, this wasn’t his fault and maybe bite’s the wrong word but his skin was broken and AGAIN I WAS NOT THERE AT THE MOMENT BECAUSE THE LORD WAS TESTING MY BLOOD PRESSURE. “Let’s see how many times she can find something out after the fact, see that her son is alive and mostly intact and still have a heart spasm.”

(3) Fall off bed in the middle of the night and against the corner of the nightstand. So that an inverted teepee shape was right – some might say, decoratively – beneath his left eye.

I promise, if there was somebody to whoop, they’da got whooped. Latifah had in all seriousness had it up to here by this point.

All of these happened in California on our marathon vacation. And then today…

(4) Rub his eye – which was irritated – with a visibly soiled rag.

I can’t. Eye swollen. Doctor called. Steps taken.

Dead.

 

An Emblem of the Land I Love

Friends! (Romans, Countrymen!) I have arrived back in Montreal, huZAH! Whew. Girlfriend. I can’t even. And during that three week tornado (I’m not sure that imagery works either but this is what we’ve got right now), someone actually had the audacity to draw attention to this blog! SMH. Guess I’d better justify your love, Tatiana!

What better way to discuss expatriation than spending my first American Independence Day in the United States since 2009!

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It. Was. Wonderful. July 4th on Zuma Beach in Malibu with my son, my nephew-son, my sis and mumzy. Feeding lifeguards some of our hoagy, watermelon salad and pasta.

Listening to my favorite patriotic performances – Marvin Gaye’s National Anthem, Whitney Houston’s, and Beyonce singing America, the Beautiful at the 2008 Inaugural Concert – and having my son FINALLY learn the words!! He is American!!! <3

The entire vacation was a marathon reminder of customer service and general niceness from strangers. (Oh, I can’t pretend not to miss that, California.) And eating. Oh, MEXICAN FOOD. Save yourself for me! No matter wheeeere you go…I will find you!

But 4th of July. That just felt wonderful. I love living away and I love coming back. I love standing in a crowd of people at Disneyland (on July 5th but shuddup) and singing along during the extravagant fireworks show, hearing people cheer and gasp and happily celebrate my native country. ::sighs and flower petals::

I love following my wanderlust and knowing, you can always come home. <3