IMG_4424.JPG

Trio from One

Last night was my mom’s birthday. She turned seventy. So the three of us, her babies, had decided to celebrate it.

After work, I met with my brother at Metro Pershing Square station. We’re going to North Hollywood where he parked his car. It’s been ages since I last saw this station.

IMG_4422.JPG

Because it’s already getting dark and the place where we’re going is opening their fridge! Yipee! We’re going to an all-you-can-eat meat!

Samba. It’s a Brazilian restaurant. It’s located in Universal Citywalk. It can be reached via the Red Line to North Hollywood. Get off at Universal City and take the tram to the Citywalk.

After a hearty dinner and tears of joy that my mom still celebrates her birthday and also tears of sadness that we were not with her. But to make it all better, we had sangria and dessert shared.

IMG_4423.JPG

Just the three of us. Just like old times.

IMG_4390.PNG

Whole Lotta Love

Last night on the way home along the I-15 freeway, as I was going around a curve, I noticed a bright light that looked like something is burning.

It looked like this:
IMG_4389.JPG

This is the candle glow in the bathtub this morning as my toddler who woke up early with me is fascinated with them (me lighting them up and she blowing them while she sings happy birthday – so spent a great deal of time doing that)

Anyways, where were we? Ah! Back to my story… Turns out, it was a blue Volkswagen (newest model) on fire. It was on the shoulder and I was on the passing lane, though I swear I could feel the heat all the way from where I was. A little further up on the shoulder was a white van with a lady outside standing next to it.

Isn’t she afraid it might explode as the fire reaches the gas tank? I’ve never seen a (just began) burning car. Why is she not in a hurry to stay away from it as possible? Why is she just watching?

I speed up a lil bit, just in case it might.

In retrospect to all that’s happened to me this month, despite all the traffic and lost hours wasted sitting in it, and most of all because it’s my mom’s birthday today, I listen to Led Zeppelin’s (on repeat) Whole Lotta Love, Knebworth 1979 August 11th and close my eyes, breathing in the music… going back to how my butler was feeling that time when he watched their concert and Jimmy Page doing his thing and Robert Plant wagging his thing wearing his super, duper tight pants while girls look up at him and swoon. Hahaha!

I realize that I still have a whole lotta love to give! Along with it comes faith, hope, patience (yes please!) cos this wild thing refuses to give up. ❤️💕💕

IMG_4386.JPG

Last Week: On Repeat?

Wish I had a doppelgänger.

Wish I could create one.

One who could pretend me even for a day – at work or on days when I’m going to be late. One co-worker who saw me last Thursday, when I was on time, remarked, “Oh you’re here! You fin’lly managed to wake up early this time?” I was insulted! How could people be so insensitive? This coming from one who knows what I’m going through??? I can’t blame them. Imagine you see someone at work who’s late everytime looking sleepy (just tired). Can’t blame ‘em. Even (supposedly) friends don’t understand it anymore. I am alone in this. Along with 25,000 people who commute along the Cajon Pass everyday.

Today is definitely playing doubles on me.

First, I missed my train again today. Didn’t see any accidents (no reported ones either) but just got slow on the freeway.

Second, while I was texting my butler that I missed the train again, a train going to LA direction starts pulling in. This must be my lucky day. Train’s late today. I just might still be in time for work,I thought. Because I wasn’t expecting any late trains today even after checking first with the Metrolink service update, I thought this might be just my lucky day. So I made the mad dash for the train. Grabbing my bag quick and running out the car, I ran as fast as I could. I could feel the wind blowing on my back where my wet hair, now flying, was. I looked at the empty platforms. Nobody was waiting. Train didn’t stop. It only slowed down. Then it was off again.

I ran for nothing.

Felt humiliated for running after the train that didn’t stop. Felt stupid for driving 80mph to make it in time – in vain. Felt even more stupid thinking the train was late too.

Felt defeated as my eyes and nose start to feel hot now more than ever as I walk back to my car.

*Repeat Off* – yeah, if only…

Out of Breath

Driving along the freeway
Seemed a breeze today.
Playing and singing song after song on my iPhone,
Sets a relaxing tone.

Then the dreaded thing happened:
Everybody’s stopping
The night suddenly ablaze with red taillights
Decorating the road like Christmas lights.

Uh-oh. Feels like I need to go!
Not now, I thought.
Should I drive on the side and stop?
Through the weeds I relieve?
Risk becoming a mooner?

No-no-no, not for a lady like me.
Hold on. Hold it in.
You’ll be home in a jiff.
What did I tell you about drinking after 5:00pm? Voice inside me nags.

Jaws clenched.
Hands tight on the wheel.
Eyes narrowing, determined to
navigate through this mess.
Getting more and more uneasy.

Just a lil bit more! The other voice cheers.

Oh, but the fuel gauge’s only a quarter left.
You’ll have enough for tomorrow’s trip, hearing my butler’s voice.

Checking my fuel gauge every morning
as he warms the car up,
He’ll refill it, just because,
I know him. He knows me.

However, the Type A voice inside won.
Stopped at the petrol station,
Got my car’s fill.

Going around the bend…
This is it
Soon it’ll be amend.

Turned the car engine off.

Run!

Aaaaaaaaaah

———–
P.S.
This was me last night on the way home.

Happy Friday, everyone!

IMG_4354.JPG

Thankful Thursday for me!

angloswiss is always right. She predicted this would happen. Lol. The daily prompt with ready, set, done number 5. I guess it’s better than thinking about whatever happened to Renee Zellweger’s face!

So today is going as usual. No traffic encountered. No sig alerts. Whew! Yesterday I was asked how I manage it all? I just shrugged and said, “One day at a time, I guess. ” I do think it may be the death of me, commuting this far that is. It may be money/time wasted for many. But for me, it means having a roof over our heads and food on the table. Clothing for me and my family. Occasionally, it means a treat to our favorite frozen yogurt place too.
Waking up before dawn, getting home late at night. Trying to accomplish things before retiring for the night can be exhausting. I thank God everyday for my ever, able body that other people could’ve easily given up. For my car that’s still going. I thank God for my spouse who’s equally ever-ready. We’re both like the Energizer bunnies. I thank God for our kids who drive us nuts and make it all worthwhile anyways with their smiles, smells and iloveyous. We made these babies – perfect babies.

From Abraham Lincoln:

We can complain because rose bushes have thorns, or rejoice because thorn bushes have roses.

Happy Penultimate day! I just learned that word, *penultimate* yesterday at work. Did I use it right?

Shadow Emerges

I may have been his imaginary friend.

He was just a year and eight months older.

He may have seen me being born but was not aware it was me.

I saw him from next-door neighbour’s second-floor window shouting my name, crying, looking for me — while I look on and giggle that he hasn’t seen and found me yet.

He was my first playmate in Boggle. He cried when he got a chess set gift instead of a guitar. But got pretty darn good at playing chess — I was always losing! He learned to ride his bike going ’round and around the garage – for a week.

I’d always pull his hairs and scratch him with my long nails but he doesn’t fight back. He’ll just tease me to death and I’ll cry and cry and pull his hairs harder!

He’s very good in dancing and was always part of a dance troupe. Once I caught him with his classmates (all boys) dancing Pearly Shell all goofy and girly.

Schoolmates and neighbours couldn’t tell us apart. I’d always be mistaken as him if I had my hair cut really short (I’d like to think of it as Demi Moore’s Ghost hair – not GI Jane’s!). Most of the time, it was done purely as a joke and for fun. I guess because we have the same smile. It’s a trademark.

Brings me Sprinkles cupcakes. He knows I haven’t tried them yet.

And texts me early in the morning (for him) today to let me know of a SIG Alert on my route.

IMG_4275.jpg

IMG_4276.JPG

He’s all grown up now. Still wakes up early for cartoons.

He’s Kuya, my big brother.

SIG ALERT on the I-15

My brother texts me this morning (too early for him) about an accident today just as I was driving out the garage.

So I looked it up on the CHP website. Yup a sig alert. But it was on the I-15N, which was the other way.

I still went my way. Listening to the traffic on the radio, it said that traffic was BOTH ways. There was a wrong-way driver on the freeway who hit a big rig. Big rig explodes engulfing the freeway in flames. This was in Baseline – along my route.
Yipes!

So I decided to go on my old route when I was still parking at Fontana. Exited on Sierra Ave. and went on along Foothill Blvd until I get to the Rancho Cucamonga Metrolink. It took me about 20-25minutes more going along this route. Better this way than getting stuck on the freeway.

I still didn’t make my usual train but at least I got on the next one which is an hour later. Unlike yesterday. I missed my usual train and the next one an hour later! Then the next train was at 10:09am. So I got to work almost twelve! Sigh.

IMG_4352-0.PNG

Hands Down, we have a winner!

This is it.

It’s unanimous. It’s unbelievable!

This month, October, is the winner: THE MONTH WITH THE MOST NUMBER OF ACCIDENTS

October 1st an accident
October 6 another one
October 13 another one
October 21 today’s accident

Hands down. Cajon Pass surely has overtaken my life.

I am late again today.

Beginning at Oak Hills, just at the entrance to the bypass lanes:
IMG_4348.JPG
It was just beginning to get light.

Then an hour later: Sun has definitely risen. But we are not moving.
IMG_4349.JPG

Almost at the scene of the accident:

IMG_4350.JPG

Just as I passed the accident scene, I was sure I was gonna make my train (actually the next one already – for I had already missed my usual train by this time).

Unfortunately, I still didn’t make the second one. I missed it by six minutes!

Oh well! I’m just thankful I’m still alive!

IMG_4304.PNG

(Almost) Lost Shoe

As I sit in the train
Trembling from the mad dash I just did.
Faster than the USS Flysenhower (from the movie, Planes, we just watched last night)
Can catapult
From zero to a gazillion knots
For that’s what my stomach
Felt like when I drove into the Metrolink Rancho Cucamonga train station
Seeing the train pulling in
While I furiously try to park
And remember to put my parking permit out and lock the car.

Looking into my clock, seven twenty-nine
I took a quick glance around
And hesitated for a second
Should I go or forgo?
Then I decided.
I came already from a long way,
We are finite creatures.
To not try and fight
The train doors I passed
With that, I let out a tiny yelp of success that I made it.
Yet I had to retrieve the black shoes that were caught in-between.

Picture source