Sunday, April 22


Eric and Simona stop over for the night on their way back to Cambridge (Boston) following a visit to Romania (we, including Simona who is from Romania, struggle to name the five bordering countries which, NB, are Ukraine, Hungary, Serbia, Bulgaria and Moldova. Extra credit for knowing the Black Sea).  Bucharest sounds fascinating : bursting with the new yet filled with Communist era architecture and apartment blocks. Eric shows us photos of crumbling ancient buildings which keep their charm despite graffiti and garbage.

The last we are together the wedding.  Simona appears the perfect stepmom, conveying affection and interest in Ben, Jonah and Isabel while maintaining considered distance : she inherited a couple teenagers, after all.  It is impossible for me to imagine Eric and them without her.

Eric , for his part, is working with Bill, who heads Arizona's maths department, to establish mathematics standards , by grades, across the country, using the Internets. The Bill Gates Foundation is funding the project.  He also dug up his concrete driveway with a long bar.

Me: "What did you think of Eric and Simona."
Madeleine: "They are a good couple."
Me: "Why so?"
Madeleine: "No shouting when you get directions wrong. Agreeing on stuff. They like each other."
Eitan: "Eric did not seem like a maths professor at Harvard."
Me: "Oh?"
Eitan: "Because of the goofing around he did."