A Conversation with Son

Son is all set to enter the PhD program in social psychology at Claremont, which is in southern California.  He’s already spoken to a professor there (twice), and attended their grad school orientation (last week).  Before he starts, though, he says he’d like to travel: maybe to Thailand …

Self asks him if he’ll be coming home any time soon, and adds, “It’s been such a long time since we’ve seen you!” Which is really not characteristic of self, she is not that mushy kind of Mom. But she’s sleep-deprived today.

Son says he can’t, he got a job administering the census, and adds that it looks like it’s really going to cut in on his sleeping time (What? Sounds like self! Only, nothing is causing self’s sleep deprivation! Nothing, that is, except for the stories in her head that seem to be calling ever more insistently these days: “Let me out! Let me out! Let me out!”) Self asks son for clarification? Why should a job administering the Mother of all Census-es cause him to lose sleep?

Well, apparently because son has been given the responsibility of counting the homeless people in and around San Luis Obispo.

Which almost causes self to go into a dead faint. “Whaaat?” self shrieks. “Isn’t that DAN-ge-rous???”

“Oh, don’t worry, Mom,” son says. “I’m not going alone. There are two other guys going with me. One of them even has police training.”

“But, but — ” self is suddenly so confused and anxious and — What are those homeless settlements like? Aren’t they under bridges or next to abandoned railroad tracks or unsavory places of that sort?

Self tells son she will be in New York the first week of June. He says he won’t be able to go with her then.

Self tells son she has to be in Edinburgh the whole month of September. It would be so nice if he could come with her before she has to go into her residency, perhaps they could wander around England, catch a few London plays. Wouldn’t that be fun? Son says he will see.

And that was self’s first long conversation with son in a very long time.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers, stay tuned.

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