The sound of the door knocker echoed through the house. Now such a foreign sound, it almost felt jarring. But only for a moment. I poked my head into the sunroom, speaking quietly so as not to wake my sleeping toddler. “Girls,” I said with exaggerated singsong lilt, “they’re here!” Excited giggles and rushing feet approached and passed by me with shocking velocity as two girls slip-slid in their socks toward the front door. In a moment the door stood open. Behind it stood two dear friends: my oldest daughter’s classmate and her mother.
My two eldest daughters sprang out the door and into the sunlight, so excited to see a friend in person. Due to the pandemic, we have kept ourselves isolated at home, hardly traveling anywhere beyond walkable distances. This unexpected visit, then, was entirely outside the current norm. Keeping socially distant, my two girls flitted joyfully about like fireflies, gleefully chattering hellos, talking over one another in their boundless joy to find themselves in the physical company of a friend.
For nearly two hours, outside in the unseasonably chilly May air, the three girls chatted, played, built a fort, while my wife and I reveled in actual grown-up conversation with an outside adult. How odd that this once-normal experience could now feel so abnormal and wonderful. Who knew human interaction was so very precious?