Elephant nestles in next to me, that ‘just showered’ smell lingering throughout his room.
he says after gulping down the rest of the water
It is in these moments, before sleep, making sense of a busy day, when his train of thought steams up and sets forth from the station
did you know that in some countries, I can’t remember which ones
burping is a sign that you liked the meal. That it was good. In some places it’s a sign of appreciation.
I respond, looking him in the eye.
The train gathers speed and continues down the track. Next stop, mastication station.
What happens to gum when you swallow it? Is it okay to swallow it?
Gum is hard to break when you’re chewing it. It’s easier to break when it’s new. You just break it off. Clunk, like that.
He rolls over and faces me. Extends his finger, starting just beside my ear, tracing a gentle arc down my chin, below my mouth, and up the other side.
Papa, this is your beard line.
He extends both hands, rubbing them on my cheeks, a smile appears on his face. Continues up, peeking at the peak.
And it goes up to your hair line! You’re bald!
He says with a giggle, this revelation seemingly fresh, novel, despite telling us something we both already know.
A moment of connection, on a day of disconnect. Rare on today, a day of impatience, overload, too many thoughts and not enough time.
And I’m grateful I took a moment to catch his train