conversations with hank


Molly: (with a blanket over her head, avoiding waking up while I struggle her into clothes) one, two, tree, four, five, six, even, two-elve… two-elve…

Hank: (looking around at the now quiet, four people less house) It is so weird.

Me: Reentry?

Hank: Wait, what? What is reentry?

Me: When Astronauts return to earth they have to slowly reacclimatize upon reentry of our atmosphere and it is the same with scuba divers. Scuba divers have to save enough oxygen in their tanks to slowly resurface from exploring the deep ocean. There are three situations when you have to carefully return to your life here on earth: When returning from space, when returning from the depths of the sea and when returning from vacation. If you don’t approach reentry carefully and methodically you can get very sick very fast.

Hank: Body sick or heart sick?

Me: Both.

Hank: Oh. (sigh) That was the best week ever.

Molly: (head still under a blanket) Kelwee, Bryan, Connor, Aida go go go via zembora (they left)?

Me: Yes, little one. Our friends went home.

Molly: Go go go howse? Go go go home?

Me: Yes. Our friends got on an airplane, then another airplane and then yet one more and returned home and right now they are all sleeping.

Molly: (emerging from under her blanket to put a finger to her lips and shush us) Aida sweeping. (nodding) Kelwee sweeping. (more nodding) Bryan, Connor sweeping.

Me: (finger to my lips) Shhhhhhhhhh.

Molly: (pulls the blanket back over her head)

Hank: It was like, having them here, was like no time was gone. It felt just like when we visited them with Lyuba in Chicago at the hotel. It was like nothing was different except they were in Portugal.

Me: Yet, that was three years ago or was it four? It was four years ago. You were Aida’s age.

Hank: That feels impossible.

Me: And now begins every day where I miss them, even though we are in constant contact, until we see them again. (deep sigh)

Hank: But it was worth it.

Me: Always is.

Molly: (head still under a blanket) One, two, tree, four, five six even, eight, two-elve, two-elve… two-elve… Mama? MAMA!

Me: Thirteen…

Hank: Fourteen…

Molly: Two-elve…