Are You Dancin’?

The bathroom I share with G is currently host to a roll of toilet paper which appears to have suffered from some type of trauma. I can’t work out if it’s been wet and then dry, or re-rolled, or if we just happened to be the lucky recipients of a dud roll. Instead of rolling out in a long continuous line, it comes away in uneven jagged pieces that are about the size of your hand. The roll has been sitting there for a couple of days and this morning I decided to text G about it.

“What’s up with the toilet paper?” I typed into my phone. And then I paused. I thought about him sitting in a meeting and decided perhaps it was a question that could wait for another time.

I have Irish friends who’ve been together for many years, long enough to have a child who will graduate next year. Occasionally at parties I’ll notice they’re speaking Gaelic, usually small sentences that appear to be personal explanations. They could be saying anything, but whatever it is it somehow cements them together, they become a unit rather than singular. I’ll be sitting with her on the couch and he’ll wander by, make eye contact with her and ask with a twinkle of mischief in eye and a strong Irish lilt  “Are you dancin’?” Her reply is always the same. With a flirtatious smile she’ll look up at him and say “Are you askin’?” I’m guessing they’ve been doing that routine for 20 years.

G’s parents have the story of the banana cake. He pretended to like it, she continued to bake it. Once they were married he was forced to admit the truth. G will Skype them and after the catch up conversation is done he’ll casually mention to his father that he had a wonderful piece of banana cake the other day “you would have loved it Dad.” I’ll hear G’s Mum giggle and look over to the computer to see G’s Dad giving him a nod and a grin.

Sometimes it’s the inane, the overused and often repeated that keeps us together.

I looked back through my texts with G.



Heading back to the hotel.

Love you.

Do you want me to get lamb chops from Monoprix.

Ridiculously those texts made me smile. Snippets of us staying connected.

I pushed send.

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