The sun felt especially warm that afternoon. I took my goggles out of a chlorine smelling string backpack and felt the water with the tip of my toe. The pavement around the pool was scorching as always and I was ready to feel the water against my skin when I heard a loud “Yuu-liya” coming from the kids pool. Against the splashes and typical noises at the pool I could pick out that sweet and pleasant voice as if there was no one else around. Tiny feet started running towards me leaving watermarks on the hot pavement and my name was voiced louder and louder. With his dark curls wet from the pool and his green floatation device hugging tightly his bony arms, Josiah ran up to me and hugged me with the greatest excitement, all the while repeating my name. “You’re just about the only three syllable word he knows,” my brother-in-law said walking up right behind Josiah. After more hugs and name repetition, the dark skinned little guy slid from my hands and jumped back into the pool, forever melting my heart.
It was unusually quite at the pool today. The kids must have all started school, but this one kid I especially miss. Dina visited my younger sister’s family last week in San Diego and brought me a few photos of Josiah on the beach. It’s been something like three weeks, maybe more, but whatever it is, they’ve been gone way too long and I’m dying to see Josiah and maybe even hear the three syllable word for the millionth time.
Miss you Joe, Yuliya