Monday, April 25, 2011

Olivia’s new friend

Olivia and I found a live Dungeness crab on the beach today.  Olivia took a shine to it.

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Using the logic that since she doesn’t like getting bowled over by waves, the crab mustn’t either, Olivia decided to “save” the crab from certain disaster as the tide started coming in.  The crab had buried himself in the sloppy sand to anchor himself as the waves washed over him, and seemed quite content.  However, Olivia decided that the crab was “stuck” in the mud, and proceeded to try and dig him out so that he could crawl to safety out of the waves.

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Olivia:  “Hang on, little buddy!  I’ll get you out!”

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(Sorry, that’s my finger in the corner)

Olivia diligently dug away at the crab, trying to rescue him from the waves, but the crab didn’t seem to be cooperating.  She was trying her hardest to help him out of the sand and water, and he wouldn’t even put for the effort to crawl to shore.  Olivia finally got frustrated at the crab’s lack of assistance in the rescue mission, and sat and barked at him.  She was clearly put out that the crab wasn’t expressing the right amount of gratitude for her benevolence.

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At this point in time, I decided to help Olivia with helping the crab.  I picked him up and tossed him into the waves and deeper water.

Olivia was horrified!

For the next ten minutes, she braved the cold, wet waves searching for her friend in order to attempt to rescue him again.

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I finally convinced her to let him go and say goodbye with a copious amount of treats, but she still felt compelled to run back and forth for a good while between me and the spot of the last crab sighting as we walked up the beach.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Deja Vu

I was watching a rerun of Anthony Bourdain last night in which he travels to Korea.  About halfway through the program, he and his guide, Nari, visit a small village near the DMZ to meet Nari’s grandfather, whom she hasn’t seen in years.  This is where they meet:image

A raised building with wooden floors and an overhanging roof.  The walls of the structure are made of paneled windows, showing an austere landscape in all directions.

I have been here before.  Not in physicality, but in a dream.

About a month after coming home from Korea, I dreamed of Halmoni.  In my dream, Amul and I were walking across the landscape and came upon this building.  We climbed the stairs to find the room empty save for a lone figure sitting on the hard wooden floor at a low table.  And somehow I knew it was Halmoni.  The late afternoon sun cast shadows across her face as we sat before her.

Watching the late night rerun last night, I felt an odd sense of home and familiarity.  Halmoni lives in the south, closer to Pusan than Seoul or the DMZ.  In all likelihood, I will never visit the worn restaurant where Nari’s grandfather shared his story of escaping from the North.  Yet, I know this place, have dreamed it.

And that is something significant.