Graduation Day

It was a busy and emotional time this June, as our youngest daughter Aliyah graduated from high school. We’re very proud of our girl, as I know other parents are equally proud of their sons and daughters. Each graduate has worked hard to reach this golden pinnacle of achievement.


The school staff, parent committee and volunteers also worked hard creating special graduation events, under difficult circumstances, to provide the kids with memories they will treasure for a lifetime. We are all very grateful to them.

It was an exciting time to be sure, and although my son Justin, oldest daughter Rebecca and I were a snug fit in our small car’s back seat, we happily observed as Aliyah received her diploma and participated in the grand march.

Aliyah and her good friend Sidney

Granted, once Justin clambered into the car the atmosphere in our vehicle became somewhat suffocating, due to his recent indulgence of a handful of chives he thoughtfully chewed on while waiting for us on his front step.

Who does that?

Knowing you are about to sit, thigh to thigh with family members in cramped quarters, breathing limited air for the better part of three hours, why would you think it was a good idea to chomp down on onions?

I believe this reprehensible act could, in a court of law, be classified as “malice aforethought”, except that the expression only applies to premeditated murder, and as he masticated the malodorous vegetable Justin was neither filled with malice nor had he used any thought at all, least of all aforethought.

I blame my Manitoba uncles for his lapse in judgement, who taught my children from an early age to eat such atrocities as peanut butter and onion sandwiches. Anyway, not even onions, or the residual breath thereof, could dampen our spirits on this momentous day.

Until we got home that was. The sparkly dress was hung back in its protective bag and Aliyah disappeared behind a book, Rebecca put in a load of laundry, Justin went home to brush his teeth (I hope), Tom began trimming his toenails, and I dealt with a mealy worm infestation. Talk about a rude jolt back to reality.

I didn’t even know several of my plants were infected with the dastardly mealy worm until that same afternoon when my friend Cyndi texted. I’d recently given her a hoya and she wrote to inform me I’d cheerfully gifted her with a diseased plant. She warned me to check for others. Great.

Have you ever laid eyes on a mealy worm? They aren’t really worms, but they are horrid. It took me three hours with dish soap, cue-tips and a washcloth to clean them off my plants, and for several nights thereafter the bloody things figured largely in my dreams. Wielding a gnarled stick I battled enormous mealy worms that slowly slunk through my flower bed leaving their fluffy white, sticky residue on the petunias, and then was beaten backward into the radishes by further specimens that crept insidiously through the potato patch. To be honest, I now see mealy worms everywhere I look, and will perhaps need some form of intervention to put this unpleasant interlude behind me. (I even caught myself closely examining a plastic plant in Walmart for the sinister creatures.)

In any case, I must come back to the original point before things take an ugly turn and I get started on my wood tick rant. Onions and mealy worms are quite enough for one day.

Congratulations to all the graduates everywhere! You’ve worked hard and deserve our praise.

Credit for this beautiful photo goes to Dallas Morris.

1 comment

  • Merv Shiach

    Bah ahaha! Wonder why onions don’t get mealy worms? Or chives? See, they are good for you!

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