It had been a long, long time since we’d arranged a Skype call with Chris, Kelsey and the kids. A friend of mine, Celia, who co-teaches the two-and-three-year-old Bible class with me, is always bragging about her amazing Skype visits with her two one-year-old grandbabies; she visits with each of them, through this technology, two or three times a week. Based on her enthusiastic reviews, I’ve been pushing for more Skype calls with our grandkids. On Saturday Kelsey called to arrange for such an audio/visual experience for 6:00 (our time) that evening.
On the dot of 6:00, both Dan and I were seated in front of his monitor, eagerly anticipating the call. At 6:01 Dan couldn't wait any longer and decided to place the call from our end; but there was no answer. Then we received a message, “Small crisis. Wait just a minute.” So we did.
A couple minutes later the call came through. It was so fun to see Chris, Clara, Kelsey and Robert, sitting there on the couch (a little reminiscent of the opening scene of a Simpsons episode) ready to talk with us.
The crisis, we learned, happened just as they were ready to place the call. Clara had suddenly gotten sick and thrown up! But she looked pretty perky as we started our conversation. She told us about what she was learning in school; we talked about Christmas wishes; she showed us her souvenirs, brought home by her Daddy, from Rome. And then she ducked down, off camera, to throw up in the bowl she had brought with her.
Robert, with some coaxing, gave us a wave, then was done with the whole thing. He wanted down where he could crawl around. But wait . . . that wasn’t really what he wanted! He wanted to be held. But no . . . he wanted down. Poor Kelsey! We hardly saw her on camera, as she was trying her best to mollify Robert. She tried a bottle, which worked for awhile, and then said, “I think I’d better go get him ready for bed.” Off camera, and from clear upstairs, we could hear him screaming as if he were being tortured. (I later learned from Kelsey that, unbeknownst to anyone at that time, Robert was getting sick, too, and began running a fever later that evening.)
Talking over the crying, Chris began telling Dan about his recent travels, while Clara (now wrapped in a blanket and growing more peaked by the minute) and I sat staring at each other on the screen. Occasionally I’d form a heart with my fingers; she’d smile and “heart” me back. I'd wink; she'd wink. I'd waggle my fingers, with my thumbs stuck in my ears; she'd do the same. I’d make funny faces; she'd make funny faces. All the while the men continued talking about the wonders of Rome . . . until Clara captured center stage by grabbing for her sick-bowl and filling it once again. And on that discordant note we ended our Skype visit.
On Sunday morning I beat Celia to the punch in bragging that I’d had a Skype call with MY marvelous grandkids, too. (I didn't see any reason to provide any further details.)