Archive for Kronicle

My daughter-in-law

Pumpkin’s lacross team played their season finale, losing 5:8. They lost most draws and the opposing team would score. The visiting team’s players are huge and they would run straight through you to score. Size does matter, everywhere.

At the party after the game, a pretty and bubbly sophomore came over to introduce herself and said Pumpkin is so cute. Later I learned that she actually proposed to King. Oh my god. I felt so lucky having such outgoing and beautiful daughter-in-law. But it seemed that King has commitment problem.
Upon hearing it, he demurred: said nothing.
So the future daughter-in-law asked him:
“DON’T you speak English?”
Hahaha .. she has humor too.
But .. but .. her motivation to marry my son is to be Pumpkin’s sister-in-law .. hmmmmmm .. Remember the say that when something is too good to be true is probably not true.

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We won!

King’s been playing badminton with me lately. Our first win as a team came last month against Sunny with his daughter.
That didn’t count as much as the win we got last night, against
Paul and Paul.
The 6 footer hubby and the other half of the twins.
They both are better players.
I played with my left hand, trying to preserve my right arm for tennis – 烧包.
It’s our second time as a team. We played without talking.
On the court as in life, many times the winner was the one who makes less mistakes.
And many people refuse to acknowledge it.
We made less mistakes, were relaxed.
They thought they’d won, easily. …. then got tight when they were down from the get go.
Sounds familiar in life?
… …
We lost badly in the second set against two girls. By that time, King was ready to go. He didn’t want to come at all. I forced him.
Thoughtfully, he told me that he’s done more sport at the music camp, and enjoyed the friendly soccer played out at the backyard daily.
“We played every day … once a guy pushed me down on purpose because his team was losing.” It’s all good nature and King felt to the ground, as requested.
“I thought all the piano geeks are timid gentle little people who don’t know how to get physical.” I joked.
He laughed out loud.
My kids are well trained to make me feel better.

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The terrorist

the parking lot story .. June 2007 I’m always being unfairly targeted.
With my kids, I always have to be conscious, not to take picture of ..
.. the parking lot (Mom … it’s parking lot for pete’s sake!!)
.. of highway (what’s there to take, Mom?)
.. of them (oh … Mom .. give me a break will you??) ..
of bathroom

Actually on our last vacation, my family had unanimously agreed to vote me as the picture-terrorist, and would confiscate my camera.

The parking lot story .. and more pics of them together, even it just their backs ..

2009-11-7 at Marist College

2008 Aug Vancouver“Mom, if you behave nicely (like no more picture taking) we’ll give you back the toy and take you off the pic-terrorist list.” King told me.
Pumpkin would always patiently wait for me when we went out, while I was busy taking picture .. and laged behind. She worried that they might lose their mom.
Today we went without kids to the CitiField and thought we would stay together with the Hous. Because they’re equally pic-terrorists. To prove it, the husband has 20 cameras! He came armed with two today. But after few minutes, they decided to dump me cause I was too slow .. lagging behind .. 刘姥姥初进大观园 .. Sight .. sight.. the kids didn’t want me, now the adults didn’t want me either. Golfer had no way out, so he stuck with me. Maybe eyeing the sky when I was not looking -:).

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Port Royal Racquet Club

The tennis club at Port Royal is part of Port Royal Golf Club. It has an USTA league or leagues. Today lady’s senior (50+) 3.5 played at the club – season opener. We watched a bit after our games. They were gracious in manner and generous with line calls, the southern belle’s hospitality? Their tennis bags are all frilly and pinkish. .. however, Hilton Head strikes me as more cosmo and sophisticate than many southern cities ..

Pumpkin asked if I would join a league, I first said no, that I have enough tennis groups to play with. But then I said that I won’t rule it out in the future – I did enjoy when I was with it. NY’s USTA leagues are definitely a different bred, with NY attitude, I can deal with it. The league play provides the competitiveness that I don’t find within my buddies.

The cat was cute. Always trying to find a way into the pro shop.

Quickly I found or formed my routine: swim 15 minutes then head to the drill (more of hitting) session with Dana, the Lion who reminds me of Todd Martin. He commented on my backhand that I was slow in bringing back the racquet. It registered. So this afternoon when I played with Pumpkin, I hit lots of backhands. It felt good. A process. Work in progress. We’ll see at beginning of the summer if my game has improved.

We left before the ladies. The cars at the parking lot are all premium brands. The setting of the island is very subdue and subtle. There aren’t loud facades or gates. If you come for the first time in the night, finding your resort can be a chore. There are riff raff on the island but I just don’t see them often.

Dana asked if my right wrist still hurt. Well. It does, feeling tender. Would not use it unless I have to. But it doesn’t feel hurting more. I ran more to hit a backhand than taking it forehand. My right ankle is hurting too. I should have sued the parking lot. Shheeeshi.

The golf course at Port Royal isn’t as nice as in Sea Pines. I found Sea Pines is the most desirable area of the island. King had a great day on the green. The weather was bit cloudy and rained briefly couple of times. So Golfer said they had the course to themselves and King got to play out all his rounds.

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My kids got a raw deal ..

I made this from scratch too .. sand and painted I played good tennis this glorious weekend, despite of my tender right wrist hurt while making my little tables. I know .. I know .. complaining shows character flaw and .. but I’ve been making ado with it and hopefully get over it soon. My buddies are pretty sick by now that every time we play, I have use of one part of body, could only play either forehand or backhand.

What the most masmezing time came on Saturday, was not that the four sets William and I won, (that too was great but I shouldn’t take any credit) but I played with Pumpkin afterward.
I went home after the morning game, had breakfast and went out again with her. As we were warming up, I noticed she has far better control by the mid court or near the net than before. We could rally for a long time, often 20 strokes or so. After an hour or so, she called it quit. We sat down, had water and then she asked,not too bad .. :)
“Have I improved?”
It might just be what it is, that she wanted to know if she has improved from the last time we played.  But what immediately creep into my mind was what I told her when she first got into it.

Couple of years ago, she just got to know Sharon (but before they ever played) and asked how she measures up to the Ace.  Being tactless, I replied in my most famous way,

“She’s much better player ..”

At the time, she showed nothing just took it in.  I forgot the moment all together.  Till this Saturday.

Lord, What did I do to my kid, I asked myself silently.  I felt sick and wanted to kick myself.  Should I answer it with bit more sensitivity?  Absolutely.  Was I able to answer it with pride and encouragement while convey the truth?  Well, if I try little harder, I might, 20% chance .. ..  On the brighter side of the equation – although I sometime feel sorry for my kids that they got a lousy deal from me .. but nevertheless, I love them very much, and very proud of them – that they’re experiencing the real life, starting right at home.  Might not be too bad after all.

Hey, I got to make myself feel good, right? On the expense of my kids? That’s bad. Parents on both side of Pacific Ocean are busy driving their little ones to somewhere and do something, while Irene is busy with her own thing. Lousy and selfish mom.

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The Spring break tennis



Surprisingly I met a group of girls from Maryland at the Massanutten in Virginia.  This resort at Shenandoah Valley is neither known for golfers nor tennis players.  It used to have a 9-hole short course now expanded into 18 holes and an 18-hole.  The short course was much nicer before the expansion, now inter-linked with roads.  Golfers have to keep eyes on the coming and going cars!  The short course was perfect for the area.  Not sure what behind the thinking to expand.  King played with Golfer, and he would have been much happier if the cours was 9-hole.

The Massanutten have 8 tennis courts, 4 for the owners and 4 for the visiting/exchanging guests.  The courts are scattered around, in need of some TLC.  The four for the visitors, 3 are being renovated, which leaves one for the entire vast valley.  How charming.  I didn’t know that they reserve 4 for the owners only till I played on it.

Pumpkin and I were playing on the court next to the MD girls.  During our water break, one of the Maryland girls, Robyn came over asking if we’d like to play doubles.  Sure.  It was the very first time that Pumpkin and I played as partners.  Oh the joy!  My arm wasn’t painful any more, or I forgot.  I haven’t been serving since January, now I have no problem [or no choice but] serving, :).  Was it dream come true to play with Pumpkin?  You bet.  Despite we lost 6:2 easily, I loved every minutes of it!!  This group of MD girls play on the same or adverary teams one time or another.  Some are 3.5 and few are 4.0.  They took turns to beat me, :))).  Ree said she’ll probably do the MS ride with me this October!  Lets go girls!!



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What gets me high

I don’t like to run, so have no idea as what they’re talking about, but swimming gets me high, no any other sport could or would, tennis doesn’t even come close, so I know what they’re talking about.  The feeling after a swimming is that you can take on the www, whole wide world, 🙂 !!

Yesterday I visited Dr. Kim.  He’s in a relax mood and chatty.  Talked about his recent trip to China.  “For additional $200 [from Seoul], we could tour Beijing for 5 days, hotels and three meals and sightseeing included.  How did they do that is beyond me.”
“How’s Mrs. Kim?”
“She’s fine. Thank you.” She used to dab in when the nurse/receptionist wasn’t around who’s a very pleasant tall lady.
“Still playing tennis?” We used to have chat on tennis all the time.
A chuckle, “no, she’s in golf now.” We all laughed.
“Do you still swim?” When he first learned that I was swimming during my first pregnancy, he was horrified, if not annoyed. “What? You’re swimming? Don’t anyone see a pregnant lady? They allowed you to swim?”
Relax, Dr. It’s good for you. Toward my third trimester, he predicted that my delivery would be easy,
“Although I have no scientific proof ..”
I swam almost every day till my labor started. That morning, I stayed home, instead at the pool, watched Pete Sampras beat Andre Agassi in Wimbledon, while enduring the mild contraction. Pete went on to win his first championship there, followed by six more – Wondering what does Pete do with all those trophies for? Ladies can use theirs to line the dinner plates, :). One suggestion Pete: planting flowers. .. .. When it’s time to give birth later, Dr. Kim rushed in to the hospital, “hold on .. .. hold on .. let me put on my gloves.. ”  It went so fast, I almost regret – could I at least see what the color of the wall paper in the waiting room was?  The nurse first sent Golfer to register on another floor then had to page him in PA to come back, if he wanted to see the birth of his child.  Dr. Kim wasn’t pleased, “where’s father?”  One of the nurses explained, “we didn’t know she’ll be this fast .. is her first ..”  Did I savor the experience?  What experience?!?!
My second pregancy/delivery was the same, and he turned around to be a fan of swimming, at least for expectant mothers.  During the subquent years, he would often ask if I still swim and how’s my swim, but never about the babies he delivered.  Mrs. Kim would ask about kids.

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A 6:4 win

Pumpkin came home all sweaty and tired.  She lost her match last week but won hers today, against a 10th grade boy.  I’m happy for her: the match could have gone either way.  “He made a lot of mistakes.”  Mental toughness’ deciding point there.

After no to take up with Barry again, she enrolled with one of her buddies at a nearby setup, 3 hours each Saturday runs till end of January 2008.  Holly molly, the young coaches mean business.  I think that she prefers group was because of company she’d have, just more fun.  At this stage, enjoyment is more essential.  Ya, my standard is high and I’m pushy, 🙂  If my kids end up to be burden to the society, it’s my fault.  And I’m Chinese.  King seems pretty happy with golf, ‘sure I’ll do it again’.

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I once heard that golf stands for gentleman only lady forbid.  It’s been a long time since I step onto a golf course.  As King’s camp winding down, they played their finale at the Clearview public course.  The weather was beautiful with refreshing gentle breeze, the surrounding is serene (even adjacent to the highway), the grass and trees are as essential to the game as tonic to the eyes.  No wonder Golfer spends every awakening moment on a course, the tranquility sure beats his screaming n yelling wife (can you image if I was fluent in Chinglish, how much louder would I have been?) .. .. Now, am I risking of losing King .. .. away from nagging mom??  Sweet.

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Gone swimming

Screenshot 2014-02-16 18.14.22

I finally made to the Parkwoods pool!  On a stolen moment between King’s camp and jazz band.  Few years ago, we stopped joining the pool during the summer.  Thing hasn’t changed much, except I found the notice at the entrance that a new water park is on the horizon: a lazy river (on the now the playground), water slide, … The construction is scheduled to start the day after the pool is closed, which is Aug 25 2007 and to be opened on July 1, 2008.  The project is funded by bond and increasing the real estate tax.

We started going there when they were toddlers.  King’s tall for his age, so he had no problem going to the main pool.  But Pumpkin’s short and younger, couldn’t make the cut despite she’s better swimmer.  For the first couple of years, we had to make a do in the toddler’s pool.  Some life guards would give her the courtesy and let her stay at the main pool but others won’t – especially duringon a slow time – which’s really hurt. 
I still remembered sat them both at the end of the lap pool, when it’s my time to do laps. Making sure their legs – more of feet – hang in the water so I could see their them when I flip turned.  They got kick out of it and splash the water lavishly and laughed every time I came around.  Lord, they grew up too fast!

The main pool has a section with 50 meters lanes, but is only open in the early morning to the master’s swimming club – with additional fee.  We’d going in early, surrounded by deadly tranquil environment, removing the dividers from the previous night to get the 50m lanes in place.  I wondered when the new pool is contracted, will there be a 50m lanes and what do they intend to use it for?  Shhhhsssish, frankly, I don’t really care about lazy river nor the water slide, but open up the 50m lanes during the public section would be a good idea.  Otherwise, why do they build it in the first place?

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