I love lunches that require no dishwashing. Who wouldn’t? I’m still in my lazy, relaxed mode but I’m moving as required. Stagnacy gathers dust and mold. Let me rest and tap here for a bit. Then I will descend the stairs and wash another window and another set of blinds. I said I will seed more kohlrabi and I will. After that, it’ll be time to walk the dog. I’ve discovered that things do not take as much time when I am “in the flow”.

I take care not to linger too long with any one thing, place or mood. In other words, balance in all things. There are so many truths in those proverbs and adages:

  • A change is as good as a rest
  • A good beginning makes a good ending
  • A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step
  • Actions speak louder than words

These are a few of my favourite. If I practice them every day, I could go far. Perhaps it would be a good idea to pick a few each day and work on them. It would create some fun and maybe a new way of thinking and problem solving. It would be a change.

The wind is howling outside. It makes me think of W.O. Mitchell’s Who Has Seen the Wind. It’s about a boy growing up in Saskatchewan during the Great Depression. I have seen the movie but not read the book. I have to add it to my reading list. After all, Mitchell is Saskatchewan’s own. The book sold almost a million copies and was made into a movie. What other incentive would I need?

An interesting blog I’ve recently stumbled onto is Julie Yip Williams‘ cancer fighting journey. She lost her fight in March, 2018. Her writing is beautiful and honest. What drew me was her cancer journey and that she is Chinese. Well, all of her life is interesting and inspiring. She was born in Vietnam and immigrated to the U.S. It is the same interest I have in Amy Tan. In both I found the common denominator of a Chinese in America and our relationship to our parents. Julie writies of Filial Love in 2 parts. The link for part 1 will lead to part 2, if you are interested.

Now, I have to tarry here no more. There are other things calling and I have to abide.



The prairie wind is blowing again.  It blows and blows, the kind that makes you feel weary.  It is the kind that gives me a headache and the shivers, as if someone is going to walk over my grave soon.  So it feels so good to have a shower, washing off the layer of old sweat and grime.  I am clean once more, unencumbered, naked and pure.

I take out a bag of trash…old underwear and an old hair dryer.  The heat had somehow melted a hole on one side and I burnt a finger on the hot molten plastic.  Until then I was still using it.  How foolish I am to hang on to it when I have another one in better condition.  I take that as a sign to let go of the broken, misshaped and the dysfunctional.  But it is easier said than done.  So I MUST be alert and pay attention to these things before they bite me in the ass.

My mother use to tell me so many things….things that nagged on her.  She tells them to me because I’m her oldest and she needs to get things off her chest.  And when I said to her that she shouldn’t talk so to me, she said who could she talk to if not her daughter.  It was just garbage and for me not to mind and to throw them away.  That, too, is easier said than done.

But she did listen to me when I told her it was making me sick.  I am not getting so much now.  Chinese people are proud and private.  They do not like to air things in public.  They have to save face.  Something must have happened to me.  I am not such a good Chinese.  I am not saving face.  I am a stranger in a strange land.  I’ve discovered that I cannot go home again.

But I have found a new land of LOLL where each person takes care of their own trash.  In this land of mine, there is no history, no accounting, no envy, no accumulation of trash….Each day starts anew.  The sun still rises in the east and sets in the west.  And all is as we make it to be.



IMG_1364I’m thinking of past Christmases and New Years as I awake in the dark this morning.  I’m thinking that it would be much easier if it was in July.  There would be no snow, heavy coats, scarves and boots, coughs or runny noses to deal with.  Life would be lighter and easier…would it not?

I’m also thinking back to my childhood in China, of New Year’s Eve.  Seems to me that is the only memory I have of a true celebration ….. a welcoming in of the new year and paying homage to the one past.  That is my interpretation of the rituals,  for I was but a child when I left my homeland.  That is how I like to remember it.

I’m feeling my loss, as a child of immigrants to this country….the  loss of my Chinese-ness, my culture, my heritage.  But I have spent many more years here than there and I can never go home again.  I am a stranger in both lands.   Sometimes it is necessary to feel our pain and losses in order to move ahead.  I have felt that pain many times.  But I also have gained much because of that sense of loss.

I really do not want to dwell on pain and losses.  They are not always real, but things our mind grab onto, maybe because of something someone said or done.  Who knows what is in another’s mind or heart.  And you cannot understand it so you write your own interpretation.  You allow yourself to doubt and you let poison in.  You hurt.  How does that help?  Better that we celebrate, however we can, to let in the light.

I like the Chinese ways of ushering in the new by cleaning and clearing out stale and stagnant chi.  Gung Hee Fat Choy! Happy New Year! Chinese tradition is to bring the new year in with clean house, new clothes and to receive/give red envelopes of money ..symbol of prosperity. My childhood memory is of our house being warmed by the fires tended by the women in our family as they made sweets and dim sims in the night.  Perhaps one day I will learn how to make some of them.


I’m sweeping out the debris of my mind, letting go of past grievances and hurts, opening my heart to receive all the goodness that there is in the universe.  I am baking bread, , making soup, blessing our home.  I am wearing the colour red, the colour of good fortune.

I am no longer a lost child. looking for my identity.  I have found my Chinese self, Hafong, alias Lily, the born again Catholic,  who admires the ways of Buddha .  I am a Chinese woman living in Canada, a country in the Universe.  And I am celebrating my life.