Apparently we are having an unseasonably cold and wet spring here in NYC. I know that because people go out of their way to tell me. A lot. And many of them do it with narrowed eyes and a sideways look, as if to really be saying: THANK YOU FOR BRINGING WHAT COULD BE THE WORLD’S MOST DEPRESSING WEATHER. PERHAPS YOU SHOULD HAVE JUST LEFT IT IN SEATTLE.
(Believe me, I tried.)
I don’t think I’m being too sensitive. But almost nine months in and I wonder when my kids are going to stop feeling like they are from somewhere else. Maybe never. Maybe mobility will be part of their personalities or makeup: I live in New York, but I’m from Seattle and was born in L.A. Or maybe it just takes a few years to actually feel like a New Yorker. And then you spend your life as one, because we all know you can never get rid of THAT.
In London a few weeks ago we all most certainly felt American. Even me. My children were two enormous ambassadors for the American childhood. I told them, while shuttling in on the Heathrow Express: Listen, boys. American children have a god-awful reputation for being rude in general, and to their parents in particular. So do your countrymen a public service favor just for a few days and be really nice to me in public.
It kind of worked.
But they LOOKED American and they WALKED American and they really couldn’t understand all the pleases and thank yous (“so many,” said one.) and in synagogue, Efram said: “It’s all pretty much the same, but instead of praying for the President, I had to pray for the Queen and some guy from Edinberg.” (I did not have the heart to correct him.)
Edinberg. Poor Phillip. Makes it sound like he’s from a town right near Hoboken.
I guess everybody is really from somewhere else. Even him.