A THOUSAND WORDS - Alex Waterhouse-Hayward's blog on pictures, plants, politics and whatever else is on his mind.


Two Little Girls & Bubble Tea With Sheep Testicles
Tuesday, July 28, 2009

I love my granddaughter Rebecca but I have begun to realize in the last few months that more Rebeccas would never be better. If I had two Rebeccas, it would not be twice as good. It is human nature to contrast and compare. And this I have been doing every time Rebecca and her younger sister Lauren knock on the door on Saturdays. Consider that Rebecca has always eaten what is put in front of her while Lauren has a been a fussy eater since birth. She is much better now (she smells everything before daring to try it) but there is no way she will eat a Mexican tostada the way most anybody would eat it. You put the tostada in front of her which in my house is a fried tortilla with chopped meat topped with raw onions, tomato and shredded lettuce. Lauren will immediately separate all the parts carefully with her fork and eats each separately. This infuriated me on Saturday until her mother, Hilary pointed out that Lauren had gone a long way from the little girl that ate nothing. Hilary did not have to remind me that Lauren had inherited from a close relative. It was Hilary who as a very little girl cried and then had a tantrum in the dining room of the venerable St. Francis Hotel in San Francisco. A waiter in a tuxedo came to us and said, "Is there anything I can do to help the young lady?" It was my wife who answered, "Yes, if you can find her some beans and tortillas."

It is these differences between Rebecca and Lauren that make the whole experience of having two girl granddaugthers that much more enyoyable.

Today I passed by Rebecca's and invited her to have a bubble tea. Rebecca instructed me to say, "Two fresh honeydew, not powder, no milk, slush and with bubbles." She then showed me how to shake the concoction and how to pierce the top of the paper cup with an oversized straw that had a cutting angle on one side. It seems that we both share a fondness for tapioca which is what the little softly chewy pearls at the bottom of the cup are. I was about to tell Rebecca that they reminded me of sheep testicles but then I changed my mind. Age seems to be mellowing me.

We walked back and Rebecca went outside to tend to her roses and remove some of the not so fresh leaves of her hostas. I then saw Lauren scooting past in her bike with her new pink front basket. It was a delight to see her stop and hear her say, "Holá, papi."

It was a delight to notice and glory at their differences.


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