CH 1.5 LEAVING (Jiro)
Jiro grins at the dark-haired girl sitting in the back seat of his brother’s car, hoping his smile inspires confidence. He knows she’s trying to be funny in the way that she is expressing her feelings but he can hear the worry underneath.
Hanako tended to fret.
Even now, despite all their preparation for this move, all the days and nights they had spent discussing and praying and researching; she worried that they had made the wrong choice. At the very last moment she would convince herself that somehow, she had misread the information, blanked-out during a vital part of the conversation that would have lead them to make a different decision. The better one. He hoped someday she would know she had the best all along.
He can see that Joe is trying to hold back some of his emotions too. Hanako would say she could see the sadness in his eyes. “His eyes are wide open like wounds.”
It’ll be tough for Joe without them--he knows. Joe is a family man. He drew a lot of strength from his family. Jiro loved this about his younger brother. In the past, this dependence was sometimes a vulnerability. In recent months, Jiro had begun to realize it could in fact, be one of Joe’s greatest strengths.
“How are you feeling man?” Joe asks, fingers twitching for the cigarette he won’t light until his family is out of the car.
Jiro pauses for a moment not wanting his brother to think he’s being flippant. “I’m good man. Just hanging".
The thing was, everyone kept asking how he and Hanako were doing; if they were ready, if they were worried, if they were excited. He knew everyone projected their own feelings when they asked these questions. He knew most didn’t believe him when he said that he was “excited,” that he was, “just ready to get there!” but he was. He was enthusiastically ready to embark on this journey, this adventure of a lifetime! He’d been waiting his whole life for this version of his life to start, and now, it was. Finally.
Outside his window, the airport comes into view and he can feel his heart rate accelerate. Man, he loved coming to the airport. He didn’t love the process of course. The lines, the stressed-out people desperately trying to make their flights, the excruciatingly slow lines through TSA--but the reason for being here, the shear go! Go! Go! Of it. He loved it. And he was going, whole heart and full-speed ahead.
photo by Juan Di Nella