Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Morning. Hazel happily on the rug with her stickers and her fierce powers of concentration.

OK. I am in the midst of feeling the passage of time like molasses. I want to go back to the States. I want Hazel to be with family. I want to know where we’re going. I want to be able to imagine the place we’ll land in next July. Paul has faith; I waiver. Standing in the bathroom this morning with the sounds of the city floating in from the high open window and a chunk of blue sky winking at me up there from beyond the rooftop across the street, for a split second I felt that feeling of being in a foreign country, the sunny air alive somehow, time pocketed away and maybe held at bay, a fleeting fiction that reached back to moments with Paul hiking out into a Florentine morning, a high school day in Rennes when I felt good instead of self-loathing, or a moment in Freiburg when we drank good beers in the deep shade of afternoon or held up to the light the minutely-bubbled, unevenly-wrought, lovely Turkish blue-glass tumbler. Family and friends will visit—actually, a rush of visits in the second half of our almost-year. But, God, the time goes slow today.

Just now Hazel refused to put on anything but her undies, which she kicked off when she had to pee and her legs dangled from the seat. And she’s refused to go out, the moment of negotiation overwhelmed by the apathy of the prime negotiator. Then, after a bit of my sitting busy at the keyboard, another tack:

Me: Do you want to go get an ice cream?
Hazel: Yah! I do!

But first she notices that she’s hungry for the rest of breakfast and climbs back up to the table to finish her bread and butter. Lord, girl. By then the moment of movement has passed completely, gone out of her consciousness like yesterday’s fast-flying clouds across the sky above our tiny terrace. Homemade biscuits happen, and then honey, more this and that, coloring and stickers, tricycle and spent aluminum foil tubes. And so the morning disappears, reading time arrives, then to bed for naptime where I can still hear Hazel talking away, singing, rearranging her guys, saying the alphabet, not sleeping. Are we both in the same place?

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