In the bubble

I flew back to Richmond today, and so I spent most of the day in the travel bubble. I had my laptop, my carry-on, my headphones, my iPod…everything was normal.

But it wasn’t really normal. I didn’t play any music. I didn’t do any crosswords or sudokus. I didn’t read the airline magazine. I didn’t even read any fiction. Instead, I read Saying Kaddish, and I thought, and I remembered.

Something else that wasn’t usual: I’d often phone Mom from the plane to say “hi” — she always got a kick out of my calling from the plane, even though it was just a normal cell call. But today, my phone would have had to be very special indeed to have reached her.

Yes, this was a trip like any other trip…but not really.

Now I’m at my brother’s house, after going over to my Mom’s to look for pictures of her to display tomorrow. While we were there, we started sorting through some of the stuff in her den — mostly books and photo albums, which were fairly easy to deal with (especially the ones that she’d labelled with a “D” for me or a “C” for my brother). I’ve put a pile of stuff on her bed to ship home later. I found a lot of my own stuff, too, such as a box full of 45 rpm records (in awful shape, I’m afraid) and many books, some of which I’m shipping home (I finally found my slide rule manual!).

Both of us were surprised how easy it was to deal with the stuff we were sorting. Of course, we didn’t actually throw anything away yet.

For now, I’m still in the bubble of aninut.
But the funeral is tomorrow, and then it’ll be time to move out of the bubble and into the next phase.