Sunday, December 22, 2013


     Doris talked to me an hour before the time appointed for the gathering and promised to be on time. She was lucky, our schedule was delayed because there were no batteries in the DVD machine's remote control, and I spent a lot of fruitless time searching the house for AAA batteries. Kids were literally hanging on my feet, begging to let them watch SOMETHING! So, I sent Sonny to make their movie ready. In a mean while, Doris showed up, only an hour and a half late. She happily loaded her plate with lunch and joined a group in the living room. Sonny, my hero, brought us some batteries and we were able to start.
jpeg (126×186)     The movie that we watched was Ushpizin. It was made in Israel. I, usually, don't like the Israeli movies: they are too gritty for my taste, but that one is a gem! I recommend it with all my heart!
images (208×242)images (194×259)     The phone rang. A person on the other end of the line didn't talk right away. Then I heard the slurping of the nose. It was Hanah. She was crying. Fighting the rising panic and trying to stick a band aid on the little Monster's finger (she had a splinter taken out), I asked my questions. Hanah was crying all out now. We sent her $100 to give to her roommate who has a truck to bring her home for the holidays. Apparently, the truck broke down, the roommate went home by bus, and Hanah spent $100 towards the rent. She still needed more than $200 for rent and even more money for the bus fare. I listened to her talk about it and wondered, what to do. The money we could find, there was no real question of it, but was she genuine with me right then? I tend to be too suspicious, and then have to make a conscious  effort to trust my kids. So, - I am very confused! 
     I assured Hanah that I will talk to her dad about sending her money, and that everything will turn out to be OK. She hung up. I went and talked to Taka. He said that he will have to think about all of that stuff. I decided that it would be a wise thing to leave him to it.
      Everyone in the living room had a cup of tea or coffee in front of them, and I brought the pies and Lemon Bread to the table there. Roberta was with us too. She had different plans from the morning, because Park was going to conduct a choir and sing at some Korean church. She got dressed in her finest clothes and expected to go with him, but he, for some reason (mostly, because he is an insensitive jerk), told her that she should stay home. The poor lady changed back into her pajamas. I don't know, how she stands to be treated like that!
     About half an hour into the movie Katya turned up. Actually, she crawled from behind the couches, so we wouldn't see her right away. She then tried to climb on her mother, who is almost nine months pregnant. Sveta (good for her) pushed her off. I became the target then. Katya went behind me on my seat, leaned on my back with all her weight and put her hands on my shoulders. It was a pretty good massage! She grabbed a handful of candies from the table. I said: "Just two!" - and her mom said: "Just one!"-  at the same time. I hastily tried to agree with mom's decision, but it was hard to convince a crafty little Monster. While her brother stolidly watched a movie that Sonny provided for him, she spent the rest of the evening with us on that topic: "Can I have another ca-a-a-a-ndy?!"
     The movie was over. Some of us were wiping tears from our eyes, moved by the wise and touching tale that we saw.
     Little by little, Sveta and her family (the Monster looking shocked that she had to leave all that fun) and Mary left. Doris stayed behind. She is a great lady, I love to gab with her about everything in the world, but I should've remembered: she tends to linger after the party. To tell the truth, I was totally wiped out! Fortunately, she took care of herself beautifully: poured a cup of tea, found milk for it in the refrigerator. Doris is my source for all things British. I asked her about many words that the Brits use differently than the Americans and - what the heck is Christmas pudding?! As we talked about her family's situation, I tried to make a phone call for her, and she went and found me the phone. We spent at least two more hours on all different topics: from our church's to Doris' teeth problems; or gossiping about one friend after another. I found Doris' friends in Russia (she was a missionary there in the Urals) on Facebook.
images (228×221) She was screaming with laughter when she saw her and her husband's pictures posted there. We then looked at my blog and the comments that Mr. P wrote to me and discussed our stand on the arranged marriage. 
     When all the available topics seemed to be touched upon, Doris got up and, after a heartfelt goodbye, made her way to the car. I looked at the messed up table, the sink full of dishes, shook my head and went to talk to Taka about Hanah. He was sleeping already. I took in the picture in front of me: a cozy warm room, a comfortable, inviting bed - so I climbed in and fell asleep. 
     Today I woke up to the sound of pots and pans banging in the kitchen. Park got there before me and was now washing the dishes while spouting all sorts of things about my bad habits to invite people and then make him clean up. I let him know, what I thought of that (not much, actually: if he didn't want to wash - he didn't have to, nobody made him do it!). I went to spend time with my trusty laptop, and he, after unburdening his long-suffering soul to Roberta for two hours straight, came and half-apologized for yelling at me. Another half of his little speech was grumbling again about having to clean up my mess. Great! Another monster to tame!
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