A Lot of Questions

Too tired. Going to write anyway. Warned you already if it’s gibberish.

Delph and I came to London yesterday. Back to the Laban Building. Delph has one more rehearsal and then her dance performance next weekend. A lot of travelling recently. We’re doing well on the train these days – walked ourselves to Borth station, found a table seat, got the homework out… and the snacks. We know the drill. And with the snacks and the homework, come the questions. Another familiar part of our journey.

‘What time will we be there?’ ‘What station do we change at?’ ‘How long does this train take?’ ‘What about the next one?’ ‘What’s the next stop?’ ‘What time is it now?’

Delph likes to ask a lot of questions. From a logical point of view, I’m glad she’s asking them. It’s good to be curious. This is from a logical point of view. The reality is sometimes wanting to hide under the table. Dig out some earplugs. After question number 237, doing a small but significant runner.

The funny thing is that I’m not on my own. In Poland my mother is feeling the same thing, except she’s feeling it with her mother. In London, her mother is a sullen visitor, but at least she’s wrapped in a schedule in my mum’s house. You know; bedtime, mealtime, walks around the block. Back in her own apartment in Poland, it’s a completely different piece of pizza.

‘Mum, what are you doing, working on a crossword puzzle?’ This is my mum on the way to the bathroom: 3am.

My grandma looks up from her desk. Shrugs. ‘It’s not that late.’

Next night: ‘Mum, why are you walking around like a ghost?’

Another shrug. ‘Why not?’

The next evening: ‘Mum, are you going to watch TV all day?’

Shrug in front of the TV. No apparent need for response.

This time my grandma’s turn: ‘What are we eating for dinner?’

’Mum, it’s your house. What do you have to eat?’

Another shrug. ‘I think we have some bread.’

My mother throws a look at the front door. She wonders how far she can get before she starts to feel guilty… at least a solid hundred miles.

‘Don’t worry,’ she hears her mother say, ‘we’ve got milk to go with it.’

Meanwhile, back in our train: ‘Will the next train be busy?’

I turn my head. I want to say, ‘How am I supposed to know? Shall I put my psychic hat on?’ Instead, I say nothing. My turn to shrug.

Through the questions, Delph is busy eating her snack. Tikka-flavoured chicken skewers. ‘Could I have some water now?’

I reach up for the lunch bag. Pass her the bottle.

Delph grapples with it for ten seconds. ‘I can’t open it. Can you open it?’

I go to grab the bottle and then stop myself. I shake my head, will my hands to stay still. ‘No, Delph, I think you can do it.’

And she does. Ok, after a solid few minutes of telling me she can’t –  but still, she does.

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