The Odd Couple

On the way to today’s ballgame, I watched in the rear-view mirror as my son Calvin’s face shifted from distaste to horror to shell-shocked despair. Life was being drained out of him, slowly and painfully.

The cause for his misery: his mother, his two sisters and a friend were belting out “Frozen” songs in the car, one after another, throwing in some pretty intense choreography.The cleats and eye black weren’t enough to help our ballplayer feel fierce in that sea of show tunes. He pulled his baseball cap down low and sunk deeper into his seat. “Aren’t you glad the girls are back?” Ian asked him.

Cal had just enjoyed a sister-free week, with the girls away at their grandparents’ house. “Camp Grandma” gave the girls new adventures with cousins, and gave all of us a breather from our summertime routine. (Well, all of us except for Grandma and Grandpa. Thank you!)

Clara got to spend her days at “Camp Frozen” with her cousin Anna, and came home armed with more musical theatre experience and a new CD (which prompted the binge-singing session in the car.) Ian, Cal and I managed to get Cal’s room painted, helping him symbolically make the transition from little boy to pre-teen.

Cal ‘fessed up to missing his baby sister, Daisy May, but wouldn’t admit he missed Clara, even a tiny bit. When she walked in the door after more than a week away, something unbelievable happened: she jumped up into his arms and clung to him in a wild bear hug, her feet several inches off the floor.

If only I had words to describe his face. Shock and awe is as close as I can come.

“I actually did miss him, a little,” Clara admitted later.

Then, the odd couple immediately picked up right where they left off.

Fire and ice have met their match: Cal and Clara.

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