the project has moved



Getting Old Quickly 1000

Cathreen's sister is fully recovered. Last night the baby had a fever and I didn't know this but I couldn't fall asleep until four in the morning. Maybe this was because everyone else was moving around the house, but I didn't notice their movements, truthfully. I was thinking about how to help Cathreen get all of her things to America.

We're starting a new life, but we don't want to leave behind the old.

She's found a plane ticket to Boston. I'll be there in a week. They wouldn't take her credit card, or my credit card because it's American, so she's at the bank now wiring cash. I thought it would be better to use my credit card, since the exchange rate has made the Korean won worthless. In the news today was an article about how while the dollar rises, and America prospers, the rest of the world suffers. Soon I will leave that rest of the world. But it will not leave me.

The money we have saved, almost a year of work, disappears even as it increases through the interest on it. There seems a lesson in this. Growing, fading.

What's really there and what isn't.

Two days ago we watched a movie about superheroes who weren't super, who weren't really even heroes. Cathreen said she was bored and she shouldn't have let me choose the movie. I didn't realize what I was choosing. I was led on.

Now the cat sneak-attacks the dogs and they chase him to his tower, where he looks down as if he is king and they his subjects. When I try to bring him into the baby's room, he squirms loose, afraid. Youth and wordlessness rule this household.

My back hurts and I'm sick--what timing to fly. I'm worried about a new household, and maybe some of what I feel is stress. But I'm excited to create new rules. Rules for only ourselves.

The dogs holler in the other room, but I feel no sympathy for them. I think it's best to let our cat prove himself.

Last night, Cathreen's brother-in-law took the family out for dinner because it will be the last time he sees me. An hour before we ate, Cathreen and her sister and I ate bread and filled up. My stomach hurt and I wasn't able to eat as much as usual. One baby slept. The other ate two paper cups, cried when we took the cups away from him. After dinner we ate ice cream and I stood on the street looking in on the two babies who tried to reach through the glass. Cathreen's brother-in-law shook my hand and said he probably couldn't attend the wedding, through her translation. This might be the last I see of him, then, for years. There's a finality I don't feel, but which everyone keeps reminding us of. Cathreen feels it, I guess.

For me, of course, it's going home. It's too much of a return to be an end. For Cathreen it's also very much a beginning.

In the morning, she ran her fingers through my newly cut hair and I asked what she was doing.

"Looking for white hairs," she said, as if she is the white-hair police.

"My hair's too short now for white hairs," I said, which I guess didn't make sense.

She soon found one. As she tried to pull it out, I remembered the old saying, pull one and three more appear in its place. Maybe this is what happened the last time, I said.

"But it's not the same place," Cathreen said. But it's all my head.

Now she comes home and says she successfully paid. The ticket, the move from here to there, is permanent.

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