Contemplation on a California Worm

20.12.2010 § Leave a comment

the fate of a worm
I attended my husband’s nephew’s wedding over the weekend in California. It was a great weekend vacation not only because the wedding was beautiful, but also because the wedding was in warm San Francisco weather where many of our relatives live. We usually visit the Chinese grocery stores when we are there and bring back things we can not get in Chicago. We get as greedy as packing fresh vegetables in our suitcase. So, I brought back “tung hau” (茼蒿) this time. A type of herbal green that is very good in soups.

I made sure to cook the vegetable while it is still fresh so I made some broth the second evening upon my return and started off by washing the “tung hau.” The fresh tender leaves were an easy job to wash because there were hardly any wilted ones to pick out. Suddenly I saw a little black worm squirming towards me; my immediate response was rinsing it off the leaf. While I was continually washing my green, the worm’s fate came into my thoughts.

So, what will happen to this worm that came all the way from California? If I flush it down the drain, will it survive? Or should I take it outside where it belongs? But it is freezing outside, it will freeze to death. It could not live if I just left it squirming around the house, it will starve to death without the greens! I end up picking up the worm from the drain trap and put it back into the plastic back with some “tung hau” leaves. I did not tie the plastic bag so that there would be air for the worm. I put it back to the refrigerator because the green would wilt if I left it in room temperature. This means the worm would live a little longer but eventually still be dead if not frozen to dead? The refrigerator was cold but somehow the plastic bag seemed to add a little insulation for the worm. But no matter what I did, it seemed unavoidable that the worm was going to dye.

If a house wife in California discovered this worm and put it outdoor in warmer temperature, how much longer will this worm live? Did it make difference that I let the worm die on some leaves it loves compared to let it freeze to death? Or starved to death? How about the drain? That must be an awful environment to die in, filthy and smelly.

As humans we might feel we are pretty in control over ourselves and our world but maybe our situations are like this worm.

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