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Day 7: Gherkins win every time

Mira's favourite Christmas present - a jar of gherkins

After spending three weeks with us my youngest daughter, Mira, flew back to Auckland last night where she is now living and studying. This year she will be completing her third year of a four year Bachelor of Fine Arts degree majoring in graphic design.

I felt a bit empty today with her gone. I already miss her; her exuberance is so infectious. Even though there is still four of us living here in the house everything seems a lot quieter now. I love spending time with my children and this time when we are all together under the same roof is very special to me.

Mira left behind a number of things because she couldn’t take everything with her on the plane due to the luggage weight restrictions. My sister is taking these things up to her later this week when she goes up to Auckland with her own family for a holiday. I went into Mira’s bedroom to check what she had left behind so I could package everything up. As I entered the room I could feel her presence. I looked around at the unmade bed; the glass of water, the packet of giant fizzy lollies, and the torch on the bedside table; the overflowing rubbish bin with the remnants from her shopping expeditions; and the laundry basket bulging with used towels. I smiled. I spotted the things Mira wanted delivered to her – a small fondue set, some dishes and containers with Winnie the Pooh printed on them, and some of her more bulky Christmas presents. There taking of pride of place amongst all this stuff was a jar of gherkins (a Christmas present from her godmother).

Mira loves gherkins.

Mira has always loved gherkins. This love dates back to her earliest eating experiences as a baby. I used to have to hide the gherkins from her but she still found them. She was like a sniffer dog as she searched them out. Controlling the number she ate was another pointless activity I engaged in. I was convinced that one day I would wake up and find my daughter’s skin has turned green and lumpy, just like a gherkin.

This jar of gherkins is one gift that Mira would definitely not part with. These little green cucumbers are still a treasured food in her eyes.

I look at this jar of gherkins and I can see my daughters delight at receiving such a gift.

Mira is a gift to me. I am happy that she is happy but I still miss her.

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