I don’t stare at the clouds; I never have. I never bothered to remember the names for the different types of clouds just like I never cared about the scientific names of the stages of the moon.
I remember as a child being told to look at the clouds and watch the shapes come alive. I would have done better with a “Where’s Waldo” in the clouds. It would have at least served a purpose. I’m not entirely callous; I appreciate picturesque clouds diversifying the sky during a colorful sunset.
My husband, on the contrary, gets lost in the clouds. He never tires of them. He can imagine an entire movie come to life in the sky and often calls me excitedly, “Honey come quick you have to see this!” I come running to find his head arched backward with a finger pointing to something. “Do you see those clouds up there?” I usually reply, “Oh yeah!” Usually, this is a fake reaction. (Like my fake reaction to my baby’s sonogram when despite ten attempts to show me a head and a body, I just saw a blob and finally just said, “Oh yeah!”)
I’m all about living in the moment and appreciating the beauty in life but sometimes I just don’t see it. A cloud is a cloud is a cloud. My husband loves mustard and I don’t; I’ve tried. He tells me how delicious it is and I say, “It’s gross and I can taste when they try to sneak it into marinades and vinaigrettes.” We finally agreed that there will be things upon which we disagree. For these moments, we break out the code word: MUSTARD.
Maybe staring at the clouds is akin to dreaming, imagining, science fiction; all things my brain doesn’t flex as easily towards. Ultimately it feels like I’m wasting time, staring into space when I could be doing something more productive.
This afternoon I enjoyed our rooftop pool under a mostly sunny sky; a few clouds dotting the horizon. These were the type of clouds which looks like a six-year-old drew them; perfect ovals with scalloped edges. “These are the ones my husband thinks are perfect for photos,” I think. But I kept staring, thinking, “I love a pure saturated blue with no clouds; no disruptions.” Clouds: just not as good as a pure blue sky. Mustard just not as good as ketchup.