It was Thursday night, 6.30pm, and the car-van was west-bound for the Signal Hill Library. Because I’m (deranged?) enough to agree when my four year old asks: ‘can we go to the library?’ At a time when other people eat dinner…..or put their kids to bed.
‘How many more days until Daddy comes home,’ the Gort suddenly asks. Seemingly out of the blue. A question I’d answered several hours earlier. [The answer was Sunday.] ‘Well, what day is it tomorrow?’ I asked. ‘Friday,’ my oldest replied. ‘And the day after that?’ ‘Saturday.’ ‘And the day after that?’ ‘Sunday.’ ‘Okay, so how many days is that?’ I replied-asked. There was silence as my math whiz tried to add up the days. A ridiculously long silence.
‘Seriously?!’ I wondered aloud.
‘What?’ the Gort panicked, ‘is there road construction?’
I started laughing. Because, thanks to our morning school drives, the kid apparently equates the utterance of the word ‘seriously‘ with the presence of road construction…not motherly frustration with his lazy math skills. (I mean, the Hen – who is four – actually figured out the answer, yelling ‘three days’ while the backseat fell silent.)
It reminded me of a conversation I’d had a couple of hours earlier, with a fellow school-mom. “The other day, my seven year old asked: ‘what does sh*t mean?’ And my nine year old answered, “oh, that means ‘we’re late‘.””