When toddlers attack

Monday, April 2, 2012

Telling the Yayo

In a normal year, we make an annual trek to Spain to visit Adrián's family, usually in summer and sometimes again around Christmas.  This year is anything but normal, and we'll be spending a good chunk of the summer in Delhi.  So Adrián took advantage of his spring break and is in Alicante now, having one last trip free of child carriers, strollers... and me.  Seems our travel budget was conveniently just enough to send him but not me.  I drowned my sorrows in cocktails and jacuzzi over the weekend at a rented Palm Springs villa celebrating my friend's 40th, where the impending birth was a frequent topic of conversation and I worked myself into a quiet panic.  I imagine it will dissolve along with the slight hangover I brought back.

Adrián had lunch a few days ago at his dad's house and had a conversation himself that was central to the reason he wanted to travel to Spain before our trip to India:  telling his dad he's going to be a grandfather again. 

Vicente is a retired truck driver who grew up in a time of scarcity.  He told me one of his earliest memories was listening to the bombing of the Rabasa airfield, responsible for the Republican air defense of Alicante and still near his home in the town of San Vicente del Raspeig, by Franco's Italian allies during the Civil War.  He grew up during the Posguerra, when Spain was exhausted by conflict, poor and isolated. 

He also eventually had five sons, three of them gay, so you could say his family was a microcosm of the wider social changes happening across the country.  In 2006, when we headed over to attend the wedding of Adrián's brother, Ángel, to his male Scottish partner, his stepmother's back went out the day before the wedding.  I met her for the first time flat on her back, in bed, crying because she wanted to go to la cosa de Ángel, "Ángel's thing."  We were sure she really didn't want to go to Ángel's thing, and neither did he, and that this rather was an excuse to stay in San Vicente.  But no, they were present at the wedding, though perhaps a bit uncomfortable and unable to communicate with the British guests who made up half the party.  At our wedding, two years later, they seemed completely comfortable, though it helped that half the Yanks present already spoke Spanish.

So this last week brought another not-so-incremental change in the form of Adrián's news from India.  Here's how he says it went:

A:  Papá, Jason and I are having twins!

V: ¿¿Qué??

A: No, seriously, twins! They're due in June.

V:  (Walking out of the kitchen, muttering) bla bla bla ...the things that happen in this family... bla bla bla

(walking back into kitchen) bla bla bla... well, you have to take care of them!  And the mother!

A:  We haven't met her.  She's in India.

Cati, Adrián's stepmother:  Wh...what do you mean you haven't met her if you've... you've... been with her??

A:  No, no, it's not like that.  We did it in a lab... in India.

V:  (walking out of the kitchen) bla bla bla ... these modern things, I just don't understand, I don't want any part, bla bla bla...

"I think that went well," Adrián told me on Friday.


  1. Oh that's too funny. Just wait till he sees those babies - he'll be all about it!
    Alicante looks beautiful.

  2. Look,I still haven't figured out our new Samsung remote for the t.v. So, yes, I can understand your FIL's frustration with "modern things".
    But I agree, it does sound like it went reasonably well. I'm glad for that!
    Another huddle crossed.

  3. So funny! My wife and I got pregnant with a known donor and it's shocking how many people think we had sex.

  4. Oh I have a post planned for my father's reaction to the name we chose for our daughter. At least you are taking this with a dose of humor...HILARIOUS, though...I think we need to have a meeting between Adrian's father and mine...bla bla bla!!!

  5. Love this story. Very funny and honest.

  6. Just imagine what OUR CHILDREN will say to us some day!
    It's hard to imagine....but sure as sugar, we will all be muttering about some incomprehensible thing of the future.