"What we lack is TRUTH and COURAGE!" she cries. (Her friend's reply is a low murmur.) "No, NO!" she cuts in. "COURAGE! We have no COURAGE!" (Her friend continues murmuring.) "Nothing can get done without COURAGE!"
Along with packing for the trip, I need to prepare psychologically. I know there will be tension, anger and irrational arguments. Lingering grief too.
They sit cross-legged on the picnic table beneath the maple and feed each other pizza.
It's difficult talking to people who are always so certain. They like to give me a knowing, pitying look, like they've got it all figured out and they're just waiting for me to come around, any minute now, to their way of seeing things.
I attach the file, send the email, and hope for an outcome that isn't terrible.
When he sits by the shelves with his son on his lap and reads from the picture book, he sounds the words carefully. He looks puzzled at the bright children bouncing through the American city from page to page.
"I don't like losing," he says, as the centerpiece of his argument for why I should lose to him.