When morning came, I woke up from my bed and went downstairs. When I arrived in the kitchen, I greeted my family and Miss Carla. As I sat in a chair next to my daddy at the table, Miss Carla placed a plate of grits, fried eggs, tomatoes and toast in front of me before placing down a cup of tea. I normally don’t drink tea that much, but I couldn’t find it in my heart to tell Miss Carla about it. So I poured some milk into the tea and added two lumps of sugar and stirred it up.
As I sipped my tea, Cousin Ray came in. He breezed over to me and kissed me on my cheek.
“Hey,” I beamed, turning red.
“Awww, Sissy’s blushing.” Jordan said.
“There’s nothing wrong with a man giving his female cousin a morning kiss,” Cousin Ray told my brother, “this isn’t 14th century Italy, you know.”
“I wish I could go to Italy,’ T.R. said dreamily.
Ray sat down next to me as Miss Clara gave him a cup of pitch-black coffee. T.R. gazed at Cousin Ray as an older brother.
T.R. asked cousin Ray, “So, Cousin, how does it feel turning thirty?”
Cousin Ray replied, “Like the truck of life just hit me.”
“Cousin Ray,” Jordan went, “why are you so odd?”
Like a few stuffy adults, Cousin Ray could have told Jordan to mind his own business; instead, Cousin Ray told Jordan, ” ‘What makes us different is that we are not normal’. Haruki Murakami, author of Norwegian Wood.” Cousin Ray always added wisdom to get his point.
“Can I trouble you children with one request?” Cousin Ray asked us kids.
“Okay.” T.R. said.
“Don’t call me ‘cousin’. Just call me Ray. Not ‘sir’ or anything else.”
“How about ‘Ray-Gun?” Jordan asked.
“I like that, kid. It makes me feel young again.”
We finished up breakfast just in time for Cousin Ray’s carpool horn blow outside. Cousin Ray looked at his watch and jumped up. “Wow, how time flies.” Cousin Ray kissed us kids (and Miss Carla). Cousin Ray took the lunch from Miss Carla’s hand and hugged Daddy as he left the kitchen to the front door. He grabbed his briefcase and went out the door.
Jordan, T.R. and I opened the door just as Cousin Ray was stepping inside the carpool. We saw Mindy waving at us.
“Goodbye, Ray!” we cried. “Come back soon.
“Goodbye! Parting is such sweet sorrow! Good day until tonight!” Cousin Ray called back softly.
As Cousin Ray got in, he shut the car door . The carpool drove out the driveway and down the street until it vanished from sight.
To Be continued/Stay Tuned!