Tomorrow Marigold and Phinnaeus head back to school, after their summer break. For Phinnaeus it will be a new adventure in a new school. We all remember high school, and the way we picked our way through the land mines for the first few weeks, until we found our footing. It can be a frightening experience. High school is where we learn what people can really be like -- good and bad. George Clooney gave a speech in Up in the Air where he said. “Make no mistake, your relationships are the heaviest components in your life. All those negotiations and arguments and secrets, the compromises. The slower we move the faster we die. Make no mistake, moving is living. Some animals were meant to carry each other to live symbiotically over a lifetime. Star-crossed lovers, monogamous swans. We are not swans. We are sharks.” That is a good point to remember in the workplace too. I work with some fabulous people, but swimming in amongst them is a Great White shark, whose charming smile hides razor-sharp teeth. But, I think Phinnaeus will be fine wherever he goes. He's a lovely young man with a great sense of humour and a kind soul. He's very intelligent, and lately he has taken up the hobby of gourmet cooking, and has been cooking his way through Julia Child's cookbook, much to everyone's delight. Phinnaeus is a good kid, and he is what folks would call a decent person.
Both Phinnaeus and Marigold have a good centre. They're well brought up kids, and very easy to be around. Marigold is a hoot, and she reminds me so much of my mother. Marigold is extremely pretty, quick-witted and intelligent. She has an innate sense of elegance and grace. One day she and I were riding on the bus, and she was sitting just so, with her ankles crossed -- very ladylike. I noticed all the other little girls on the bus watching Marigold, and one by one they all sat up straight, and crossed their ankles just the way Marigold did. She was completely oblivious to it all, and I chuckled. Marigold definitely has a sense of wit. The last time she visited me, she had a bit of a tummy ache, so I bought her some ginger ale, thinking it might help. A while later I asked her how she was feeling, and she looked at me with a twinkle in her eye and said, "Oh, I'm much better now. I had a good f*rt, and the tummy ache is gone." I nearly fell off my chair. It was not something I would have expected her to say, and for just an instant I had a flash of my mother.
Each new chapter of life can be a bit scary, but exciting at the same time. So many new adventures await... Have lots of fun, Phinnaeus and Marigold...!