Thursday, June 21, 2012
The new boy, the one from Utah, is getting a tour of our house. My son, who is rarely happier than when he's playing tour guide, is showing him every nook and cranny -- from the dingiest, most humiliating secrets of our plumbing, to the tip-tops of the toy cabinet. "That's my mom," my son says without enthusiasm, as he escorts the new boy, with a brush of his hand, toward the serendipitously organized "shoe closet." And in they go. And now I can hear them from among the sandals, from the depths of a crowded, half-carpeted locker where no sensible person would ever willingly go, talking about the Utah desert and Hexbugs. And now they're out, brushing themselves off, tripping over each other and sneakers and snow boots, laughing and plotting what to do next. It's still about an hour 'til dinner, and their scooters, still lying on the sidewalk where they dropped them, are hot from the suede-colored sun. From the front door, sliding into their flip-flops, they yell good-bye, and they're gone.