23 Mar 2012
Something beautiful happened tonight. I had the evening off, and Eric was on an observing run. I was in the kitchen baking up a storm when I heard my phone ring. He was Face Timing me from what I call his Space Dungeon–a basement from which they can control the telescopes at a large and far-away observatory. Pretty cool. I had my hands in flour and eggs and needed to keep going as I was talking to him, so I gingerly set him in the cabinet among the spices. The sensation of looking into your cabinet at your husband is a strange and wonderful one. There he was, smiling beautifully, nestled among the allspice and smoked salt, oblivious to the flour that I am so good at spilling everywhere and the Really Important Spices that are ingloriously stored in plastic bags until we get pretty spice jars for them. Just a few years ago, this wouldn’t have been possible, and that is kind of mind-blowing. It brought back an ocean of memories of the two research trips he took while we were dating, one to New Mexico, one to Australia–one for three months, the other for four. Skype was our daily bread, and if I missed a session with him, my whole day was clouded with disappointment. But every time I did see him, my face hurt from smiling, and I nibbled on the delicious crumbs of our conversations for days. I am so grateful for the technology that makes this possible. And so grateful for the thrill of feeling close to someone who is far away. And even more grateful that tonight he is only in a building down the street, and that in a few short hours, he will be home with me. There will be chocolate cayenne muffins waiting for him. I ate one when they came out of the oven, and my mouth is still burning and tingling ever so slightly. I love that this picture captures all of that. I hope I never forget it.