It didn’t hit me until I saw the sunflower. I knew we were moving to the “land of fruits n nuts” – I am a native Californian – but when I saw the 6 foot sunflower in bloom, in May, it really hit me. I am WAY further south than what I am accostomed to. See, orange trees loaded with fruit doesn’t speak “late summer” to me like a big ol’ sunflower in bloom does…in Waldheim, that’s a sight reserved for mid to late summer, if it’s a good year. And here, the sunflowers are already in full bloom! In May! So a bit of climate shock there.
Culture shock…getting carded every time I use a Visa…actually being able to read all the bilingual signs cuz they’re in Spanish (which I hear around every corner)…seeing an absolute abundance of Mexican food places (yippee!)…seeing black and white police cars absolutely everywhere all the time….feeling like a tourist in the state I grew up in….not having a clue about things people here are so tied up in knots over….and the list goes on. Today I had a “Monk” moment (Monk is one of my favorite tv shows): a toddler at the park put his hand in a little pile of dirt, looked at it, and started toddling to Mommy with the hand held out…and Mommy was already on her way with a wipe. Yes. Really. At a park. Where presumably people go to have fun, play in the *ahem* dirt, etc. Am I just a radical Mom? Letting my kids play for whole minutes, maybe even half an hour, in the dirt before cleaning them up? Maybe.
Having our landlord/house sharer inform us the day after we arrived that we had a week to move out cuz we were too messy (yes, one day, boxes still unpacked, you know…like just about everybodywould be on earth), I’ve been thinking about cleanliness and messiness a lot. We renegotiated so I have more time (maybe kicking out a pregnant woman and her four children the day her husband leaves the country weighed on his conscience??? Especially after he assured us via email that he understood family life, actually wanted a family sharing his house, etc, etc???) but while here I have to clean CONSTANTLY. Every single drip, every crumb, every toy, all has to disappear before he sees it, and it’s driving me nuts. Life in a family is not meant to be like this!!! Kids are inherently messy! And there’s only so much I can do without having every minute of my life revolve around cleaning…which I thought it already did (:P see previous blog) but I had no idea til now. I guess I’m venting a bit here, but hey, what are blogs for anyways? =D
So the good news is, all the absolute insanity of the past week (getting here, getting kicked out, Nathan leaving to go back to Canada to await his visa, being a “single” mom) looks like it’ll be ending soon. The seminary (which accepted Nathan, Yay Nathan!) has a house that they’ll rent to us at a steep discount. It’ll be small and cozy, but I am heartily sick of big and formal right now (this house has 10′ ceilings everywhere and I have to be on tiptoes to lean over the bathroom sink cuz it’s so high, not to mention that it’s almost a leisurely stroll just to get to the kitchen). So, God providing the manpower, we will be moving sometime next week. What a relief.
I know God had this all planned for us but I sure wish it had all involved much less trouble, heartache and frustration. Sigh. I guess He is getting us ready to be missionaries after all!!