We Skyped for an hour and got disconnected three times. Of course we talked about nothing. My husband scolded me when I complained that I had not heard from her much in past weeks. “But Julia, you don’t say anything to each other. It’s not like you learn much.” OMG! Isn’t that ridiculous, I ask you. “Learn something? Learn something?” A mother wants to learn something when she Skypes/texts/emails her daughter who is half way around the world. Is that not the most ridiculous thing you’ve ever heard?
Who wants to learn anything, say anything besides, “Hi sweetie. How are you?” “Hi, Mom. I love you. I really miss you Mom. How’s Paddy? Can you hold her up to the camera?” “Of course I can.” And then we talk about Bane in the Dark Knight Rises and how amazing Bruce Wayne is and how incredible Robin’s going to be when he gets his new costume and I think Batman and Catwoman are going to have amazing children. She says that the director says that it’s over. He’s not making another Batman movie but there’s always room for Robin movies we say practically in the same breath. Ha!
And he says we don’t learn anything. We talk about how she has 16 three hour classes until the semester ends even though it hasn’t started yet. And we talk about who she’s going to hang with when her roommates leave for Vietnam next week. We talk about Chapel Hill’s own Nick M’s fabulous dives in the Olympics and that the USA is raking in the medals. She doesn’t know this but I tell her. Especially about women’s crew. I’m an Olympic addict and she’s missing it so I fill her in.
We talk about my patient that died and how I had a hot dog, french fries and a milkshake right before the funeral. How food solves everything for the sad soul but only in very small portions. Did you know they serve a kiddie size popcorn to adults at the cinema? Oh yes, they do.
She complains about her visa running out before her brother comes and they travel to Cambodia. She has to leave the country every 90 days to keep it “legal.” ‘I have to go somewhere before September 19th! Aaarrrggghh ten hours on the bus to Laos.” “Such first world problems, Mom”, she says and we laugh. I brag about my tickets to the La Traviata in Venice and the Coliseum in Rome. Also my tour of the Vatican. I am definitely going to give the Pope an earful about the victims I’ve treated that have been abused by priests. Think I’ll get an audience? Never underestimate me please.
Who says we don’t learn anything mister? Don’t learn anything. What is he learning on the golf course? Nothing that could touch that. “Tell her I’ll see her in December. She shouldn’t have left if she wants to talk to me,” he says as he walks out the door with her brothers to play golf. Ha! she chuckled when I told her. “Dad always makes a funny joke.” Yes and he’s getting funnier. I nearly died laughing when he said we don’t say anything to each other. It’s true and it took us almost an hour to do it.