This morning Clay and I sat with Larry and Connie in their kitchen while the boys straggled in one by one. They each went over to shoulder their way into a good morning hug from their grandparents, and padded around, choosing their last-morning-of-vacation breakfasts.
Sophia sat on the counter in front of Larry, and while he finished his coffee, they chatted.
"Oh, no," he said, "you don't want that salt. Here, you play with this." And he scooted a plastic container of mixed nuts into the corral of her fat legs. She patted its blue lid with both hands and gazed at him seriously.
"AhhAAAAH!" she screeched.
"Now don't you worry, okay. You and me, we're going to have lots of years to get to know one another," he said, and his finger tapped her knee.
The sky was split between cloud and sun, and someone noticed a rainbow arching over the river. We gathered at the windows to look at it. It was actually a double rainbow, a brilliant wash of color echoed by a pastel mirror image just above it. It shone against the deep gray of the clouds. It grew and stretched from the middle of the river, over the house, and into the horizon beyond the neighbor's house.
And then it was time for us to pack, and Connie and Larry to leave for their appointment. We all hugged, and they were off for Larry's next chemotherapy treatment.
It was hard to leave today, to pack up and go away from these people we all love so much and this place that has become so precious. I keep picturing them all surrounded by that rainbow, as though they are all wrapped safe in promises of hope...and years to come.
It was hard to go, but it was a good way to leave.