Tag Archives: questions

Let’s Talk About Butterflies And Socks

Tonight I am plagued with some very puzzling questions. There is one that has bounced in and out of my mind for a very long time. In fact I included it in a poem I penned way back in the seventies.

~ During summer rains, where do butterflies hid ?~

I first began to contemplate this when working in my flower garden one August afternoon.  As is common in our valley several varieties of butterflies fluttered around, unmindful of me, they danced from flower to flower in the warm muggy air. We were in full monsoon season and huge thunderheads were building on the horizon. The wind was soon gusting and the clouds roiled ever higher in the sky. The first roll of thunder had barely faded when followed by a louder clap. Gathering garden tools and kids I retreated indoors. Lightening crackled and the thunder rattled the windows as the sky opened up. The rain came in a torrent, no gentle sprinkle building up to harder and harder, it poured as if the clouds were impatient to get rid of their load of liquid. In less than an hour the storm was gone just as quickly as it had arrived, moving south along the valley.

The kids were anxious to get back out, for there was large puddles calling to them that needed to be jumped in. They laughed with delight , splashing and romping with our Elk Hound pup, who loved rolling in the water. I first noticed the full rainbow arching across the mountains to the east, then the butterflies. They had resumed their darting ballet among the flowers, That was when the question hit me. Where did they hide during the storm?

~ Where are all the missing socks?~

Now I’m quite aware this is an often asked question. And is probably one that will never be solved to everyone’s satisfaction, but I have a couple of theories. But first a sub question; why just socks and less frequently gloves? Notice a pattern? Things that come in pairs. I don’t have missing undies, towels, shirts or pants. My pillow cases are all accounted for and dish clothes are staying put in their drawer. But socks are gone, never to be seen again, just vanished! As mentioned in an earlier post I love colorful socks so I have given this a lot of thought and have two possible explanations. First one may be scoffed at, well both may, especially by the scientific community.

I offer for your consideration my first theory. One legged gremlins. They steal one sock at a time, being single footed and non-greedy they never take a pair. My second idea is actually a mental picture that occurred after seeing an illustration of what our Earth would look like if sliced in half. It showed the different layers that make up our planet down to the most inner core. It was interesting and somewhat complex but what popped into my head was socks. What if the Earth’s core is made up of all the millions of missing socks? And new ones go missing everyday all across the globe because the core must be constantly replenished to keep the Earth from flying out of orbit. Mother Earth is just as ungreedy as gremlins would be, so again just one sock is taken from each pair. This theory has become my favored one because I am less upset by sacrificing my socks for the good of our planet than to a bunch of gremlins even if the poor things are handicapped. Hope that isn’t too unkind of me.

Hope you will offer your answers or theories to these questions. Also share any puzzles that rattle around in you mind.




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Gifts To Remember

Children are our greatest gifts. This has been said so many times it has become somewhat like a worn out cliche, but that does not negate the truth of the words. I love having conversations with little ones. They impart so much wisdom, often in a humorous way, and always with blunt guileless honesty. I advise anyone engaging in an exchange with a child to put aside their personal egos and just set back and enjoy the new perspective you are going to gain.

We all have “Kids say the darndest things” storeys. They are cute and amusing; for example one of my nieces replied to the comment that she had her shoes on the wrong feet with a puzzled look “But these are the only feet I have”. Then was farther confused when we could not hide our laughter.

However some of the most interesting conversation I’ve had with children were with kids I didn’t know. In today’s climate this doesn’t happen often because one has to be careful, not just for our own sake but mostly for the children, I would never want to undo the lessons they are taught at home and school about not talking to strangers.

Recently I was privileged to have two such encounters with two remarkable little boys. My grandson attends Tae Kown Do lessons and I transport him and sat in the area provided for parents while he goes through his exercise. There is a class of younger children right before his,and as the children from that class were gathering their belongings before leaving one boy, who was waiting for his parent, stood in front of me staring intently. I smiled and this was apparently the only opening he needed.

“Are you a Jew?” he asked in a firm voice.

Wow, what a question, I was surprised to say the least. I answered no, and waited with held breath to see where this was going. He then informed me that he was Jewish and that there weren’t many Jews in our town so he just wondered…adding because of my necklace. Aw I thought, it began  to make perfect sense. You see I wear a Cross and a Star of David on the same chain, both for personal reasons, I’m Christian and feel a close spiritual connection with Jewish people and their history and beliefs. I have worn it for so long it’s a part of me and I didn’t think of it in connection with his question. I explained briefly why I wear both the Christian and Jewish symbols. He was evidently satisfied, for he then chatted away about King David, the synagogue, his rabbi and favorite Holidays. Without me adding my opinion he decided my not being a Jew was alright because there is “only one God”. This sharing ended too soon because his ride arrived.

My other talk was with an even younger boy whose Mom and sister are both in my grandsons’ class at the same martial arts school. Mom seated him next to me and told him to play quietly as she handed him a small bag of toys. Without encouragement on my part he immediately showed me all his Hot Wheel cars. Regaling me with stories of how fast they were. Then with a sudden switch of subject he touched my hand and said,

“My skin is slick but yours is all loose and has lines. How’d you get those lines?”

I suppressed my amusement and matched his serious manner while telling him it was because of my age. He enquired about my age after telling me he was four years old. He then discussed the lines on my face and declared that they were neat and he wanted to have lines of his own when he got old, elevating my wrinkles to a badge of honor. Before I could respond another quick silver switch of topics took place.

“Do you like lizards? Have you ever caught a lizard? I caught three lizards.” he rattled off in his rapid cadence, not waiting for me to answer.

This is one of the best part of children’s conversations, takes very little effort to hold up my end, just the art of listening. So he told me about the lizards, explaining the best technique for catching them because “they are super fast”. He explained how he put them in a box and took them into his room, but that later his mom said he needed to let them go outdoors so they could find bugs to eat.

“Bugs are their favorite food.” he informed me. Then proceeded to list his favorites,” My favorite is hamburgers, oh and mac and cheese and ….etc.etc.” he rambled on until he had listed at least fifteen of his “very most favorite of all”.

Then his cherub face turned serious, “If I tell you a secret, you promise not to tell anybody?” he asked while making a cross your heart sign on his small chest.

Oh no, my mind swirls. Choosing my words with care I tell him only if the secret is safe to keep. He contemplates this for a few seconds, then nods and with wisdom beyond his four years says, “Yeah some things can’t be secrets, but this ones o.k.” he brightens,and leaning towards me whispers, “When I let the lizards go there were only two in the box,” looking around, he giggles, “That means there is one in the house somewhere.”

The class ended before I had to reply.

The tragedy in Connecticut today stirred these memories of two special little boys who shared their thoughts with me so freely and in so doing gave me a gift of delight. The world was robbed today of wonders that will never be shared. Most of all the parents, families and friends were robbed of the future gifts these children had to give. My hope is that some day those who have to suffer such a great lose will one day be able to talk and smile about the memories that will always live in their hearts. Prayers for the rough journey they all have to go through. May peace and love bring some comfort.




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He puts on his hat of plenty and tilts it at a jaunty air…He dons his happy pants and slips on his dancing shoes…Over all goes his cloak of oportunity…He clasps his walking stick of hope and steps out his door…First one then another start to follow as he passes by…Soon we are a crowd, drawn by the jingle of gold in his pockets…A sweet melody rolls off his tongue… But wait what’s that he said, not sure I understand…Oh it doesn’t matter, look how high he leaps to click his heels…And how perfectly he twirls his cain…So many are following now…He must be the one, the next big thing…Yes this has to be right, for thinkers we all be…not just a bunch of lemmings prancing toward the edge… We aren’t are we ????

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