Helen and I set up a video conference each night when I get to my hotel room. This way we can see each other and chat while Helen handles Jack and I prepare to go to dinner, but mostly it's so I can say good night to Jack. It's nice because even though I'm 500 miles away I still feel like I'm part of bed time.
Tonight I got back later than usual and Jack was eating his dinner. He was a lot more talkative than usual. Normally I get a quick summary of his day before he disappears giving me no more regard than a non-animated TV show, we get the same when we try to talk to him over the telephone. Honestly I don't think he quite understands any of this. I figure he must think that Mommy has just put a picture of me on the computer that occasionally talks to him in the same way that his My Pet Monster doll does. Tonight was different though, I got actual unprompted conversation. Maybe now he's starting to understand telecommunication a little more clearly.
While he was finishing up I got the run down of the daily events, the status of his chicken pox and a demo of his latest Ben10 action figure. During the few minutes when Helen had left the room he suddenly became conversational.
So what have you been doing today in Scotland?
I've been working, all day
I was in Birmingham.
I know, you took the train.
You said you were on the train.
I was on a train when you called me, but I wasn't on the same train as you.
It's no fun in Birmingham without you.
It's no fun in Scotland without you.
Where are you living when you are in Scotland?
In a nice hotel.
Is that where we're going on Saturday?
No, we're going to a wedding on Saturday.
After that can we go to fun? (fun meaning a kids play area)
We'll have to seem. I'll make sure to find you some fun at the weekend.
That would be really good, I like to go to fun.
By this time Helen came back into the room with pudding and Jack lost interest in talking to me for a few minutes. When he finished eating he we poked our fingers at each other and discussed my plan to eat mussels for my dinner. He didn't think it was a good idea.
You don't eat muscles.
I eat mussels, I love them.
But you can't eat them, not muscles under skin. I don't like it... and so it went on until he finally decided that I should eat a steak instead.
So here I am, spending the first of three nights alone in Paisley Scotland and I'm writing about missing my family. No doubt I'll wake up in the morning expecting to hear Jack announcing that his sun is up, or find Helen sleeping next to me. Some people might call that sad and I tend to agree with them, but I'll only be sad till Thursday.