by Ruth, aka Momma Frizzle
Yesterday was the summer solstice, the longest day of the year in the Northern Hemisphere. Because of the earth’s tilt in relation to the sun, daylight lasted nearly 14 hours here in Orlando. I didn’t notice the lengthened daylight hours (maybe because it rained most of the day), but I take it on faith.
Some other measures of time: 1 hour — 1 month — 3 years.
How long Ambassador Hen and I chatted on Skype yesterday — how long until Sarah comes back to the States — how long she’s lived in Portugal.
Video chatting across an ocean, through six time zones, and into my sister’s Lisbon apartment is still amazing to me. We are simultaneously close and far away. The miles haven’t changed, only our perception of them. She is close enough to see. But not hug.
To talk, she avoided making dinner. I ignored work. We let our kids watch movies, while we laughed, shared, listened, encouraged, and planned. She ate a gelato pop. I drank iced tea.
She told me that her naughty youngest son continues to cause international disturbances. Most recently by throwing all his toys out of a second-story bedroom window onto the street below, alarming the downstairs shopkeepers in the process. (He had to toddle into each shop and apologize). Last week, he also sidled up to a family (not his own) at the beach, naked of course, and began eating their lunch with them. His older brother had to drag him away. Literally.
My life is way less interesting. I told her about having a summer job for the first time in over a decade, pontificated on my educational approach, and planned how we would send our oldest daughters on international adventures together when they finished high school.
Yesterday afternoon’s visit was like hundreds of others we’ve shared. Sarah and I talked and laughed and told our kids to leave us alone, because we were sisters before we were mothers or wives or nearly anything else.
Even though we were talking across a fuzzy video channel, we were able to span time and space to see each other. Hanging up this time didn’t feel so final. Because I’m only counting hours and days until she is close enough to hug. Until perception is reality. And we’ve already made it through the longest day. Together.