Saturday, March 17, 2012

A man with simple tastes.

This picture was taken on his 31st birthday, by Janet.
This type of breakfast was probably typical of him.

When he visited, and I offered to make him breakfast, he came back with: "Mom, you rest, I'll make you breakfast!" He enjoyed fussing in the kitchen, rustling up some grub, making the most of whatever he found. He was generous with his time, and these little offerings to make me breakfast were most appreciated.

So, we'd sit around, I with strong coffee, he with a latte or a glass of milk, and catch up.
"What do you eat, son?" I would ask.
"I try to cook a good meal."
"What do you make?"
"BBQ chicken, fish. spaghetti."
"I've started to grow some greens, arugula, in the front yard, and left it there to seed and now..."
"Yes, it self seeds. You'll have arugula everywhere. Basil and parsley too."
"I put basil in every dish!"
"How do you make your spaghetti?"
"I use the same tomatoes and paste you use. It does make a difference, no?"

And that's how it went. He was conscious of nutritional needs, of staying in shape, of eating well, of avoiding additives.  He was also conscious of how his dog was growing, what nutritional needs he had, and had switched to raw food for Butters to keep her healthy. He spent time exercising her too, taking her to dog parks and to swimming holes.

With time, he would have grown more vegetables in that big yard of his.
He talked about putting in a pool for exercise and a studio/greenhouse, a place where he could grow even more vegetables.

He had purchased a modest house, a small California bungalow that he would soon outgrow. But for now, he was home.

Janet had told him about some family farms nearby, and he began purchasing CSA produce from them, trying new vegetables he was not familiar with. Riding his bike down the LA River under freeways and major streets, he discovered old families with horse ranches training kids to ride horses, keeping livestock and vegetable gardens. He was impressed with their way of life, their self sufficiency.

That last summer, I could see how he and Janet were viewing the world together, growing together, planning and dreaming together.


  1. Remember, this is how I saw him, how he communicated with me. You might remember him differently. After all, we are different people when we are around our parents, no?

  2. Seems he was a wonderful guy. The best are the first to leave unfortunately.

  3. I like how he looked through your eyes. I respect these types of men who take care of themselves and are conscious of how they treat their bodies and their loved ones (Butters :)). As a mother, the last bit about him having a love in his life would mean a lot to me. It's a lovely bit of life--dreaming and planning with someone to share it all with.

  4. This must be so terribly difficult to do Rosaria.

    Peace be with you.

  5. What a courageous yet rewarding endeavor, Rosaria. I remember reading a novel a number of years ago based on the premise that people are never really "gone" as long as there is someone left in the world to remember them. Your memories keep him with you and in the process, we get to meet Brian. Thank you.

  6. strawberries w/ eggs? sounds delicious!
    my emily and i have similar conversations about food and nutrition. she is much better than I.