With Patrik's departure, things are rather chillingly silent here in the house tonight, except for the ringing in my ears, by which I know that I am indeed still alive (I ring, therefore I am).
Honestly, I don't know whether I will ever see good 'ol Patrik again. If I were a younger man, I would just assume so; but, as it is, I cannot envision him coming to Bali again nor I going to America anytime in the foreseeable future. But then, I don't suppose that one should assume anything in particular. One ought to know better. At my age, I mean.
My younger stepdaughter recently commented how strange it is that someone (namely, me) could have been so present in her life one day and so completely gone the next. To which I answered, Well, I'm not gone, I'm here, and will be here even after I'm gone.
Nonetheless, I know what she means. To my recollection, I have not seen her in more than eleven years. It seems like both a moment and an eternity, depending on how you tilt the thing. The other night, I found myself telling Patrik stories about Jamila as if they had happened just yesterday. Surely they did. How else would they be so fresh in my mind?
Ah, but anyway, the big fat brown dog is here, having just now stopped by for her nighttime snack. Now there's someone you can count on.