Thursday, February 20, 2014
When I drive back from the park after walking Rosie and Genny (mom's dog), I am usually on edge. The back seats and passenger seats of the car are always covered in mud despite my efforts to keep things clean by laying down towels. Genny starts crying with excitement as we ascend the driveway. She loves my mom so desperately she can't but whimper at the very thought of being reunited with her. She bolts out of the car the moment I open the door. Rosie whips herself into a frenzy Genny style and begins running in circles while barking angrily.
While scolding my mom before I left for work (for spending too much money and having unrealistic expectations) I felt my phone vibrate in my pocket. I checked it when I was safely in my car and setting out to go to work. I received two texts. I didn't recognize the number.
It read "You said you won't hurt my feelings but u did when u didn't text back" punctuated with a crying emoji. Then, simply, "Thanks" with a sad face emoji.
I wondered who it was from. I couldn't think of anyone. I'm too old to know anyone who would even feel this way let alone text me to let me know. Poor thing. She obviously had the wrong number. If my morning sucked, hers was surely worse.
My mom and I went to Anawalt Lumber in the second or third week after her move to Los Angeles. She bought a couple of small trees which I planted near her front door. I bought narcissus bulbs. You can buy ready-to-go narcissus bulbs at Trader Joe's, (ie. they're already situated in a little pot with earth). All you have to do is water them from time to time and wait for the bright green hints of early springtime to shoot forth. I figured I already had pots and dirt so the three bulbs for $3 would suffice.
One bulb emerged remarkably quickly. I kept the soil damp - perhaps too damp as little mushrooms started appearing on the surface. I wondered if this was dangerous. I googled "Is it dangerous to grow mushrooms indoors." You can find every type of opposing answers to simple questions online. Generally the answer seemed to be 'no'.
I replanted the virtuoso bulb in a mason jar on its own. I marveled at the white strands pushing through the soil against the glass wall of the jar. There's something so satisfying about looking at roots 'in action'. I eventually made the realization that they were not roots sprouting from the narcissus bulb. They were in fact a mycelial network sprouting up more little mushrooms on the surface. For some inexplicable reason I thought this was gross.
The small paperwhite flowers bloomed a week or so later. The scent is particular - somewhat pretty somewhat not-so-pretty. Rob was sitting on the sofa and asked me if I smelled cat pee. No.
"I feel like I'm smelling cat pee" he insisted.
I took a picture of the blossoms and posted it on Instagram.