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Banana Phones

conversations with hank

Me: (holding a banana to my ear and one out to Hank) Ring, ring… Ring, ring.

Hank: (grabbing his banana) Hello?

Me: Hello. Is Hank available, please?

Hank: (banana to his ear) This is Hank.

Me: Hi, Hank. This is your mother. I was wondering if you would like a banana?

Hank: I would and I know… I know… If I eat this banana then we can no longer talk on these banana phones, but I want a banana, yes.

Me: (banana still to my ear) Roger that. Thought I’d give you a call. Let’s hang up then and I will open your banana.

Hank: (banana still to his ear) Sounds good. (mimes hanging up)

Me: (mimes hanging up) Shall I open your banana like a monkey or a human?

Hank: Um… monkey.

Me: (opening the banana from the bottom) Oh man, this may be the most perfect banana ever.

Hank: Ohhhhh! I wanna eat it!

Me: You’re so lucky to have bananas. You know you Avó-avó Aldina (great-grandmother) never once tried a banana.

Hank: Really?

Me: Yes, she was famously stubborn and when asked if she wanted a banana she would say, “bananas don’t grow in Portugal why would I want one?”

Hank: But banana’s grow in Madeira.

Me: True, but Madeira is a semi-tropical island in the middle of the ocean. She meant on the continental part of Portugal. She also famously never, ever ate beef.

Hank: Ever?

Me: Nope. She used to say, “Cows are to work in the field, why would you eat a cow? They are needed.”

Hank: (mouth full of banana) nodding. Her life was very different than mine. I loved her. I remember her hands and sitting in her lap in Alentejo.

Me: She was someone very special. We are very lucky to have loved and been loved by her.

Hank: And now she is on her next journey. (pause) I hope it’s great.

Me: It’s a mystery, but knowing Aldina, she has made it great.