At Arm's Length

Having to stay away from family due to my irradiated state has been a surreal experience. It feels like I'm away in a foreign land, but the surroundings look so famliar. I've spent the last three nights wandering Singapore by myself, the first two nights with camera in hand; tonight with bicycle in tow.
I still get to go home, but only after the children are fast asleep, so as to prevent any contact should they decide to rush at me like a couple of zerglings. I leave before they wake, and our only contact has been by telephone. They've had a whale of a time – Faith has done a grand job filling their holidays with activities. I get to hear all about it when they speak to me on the phone: Anne would excitedly regale me with the day's events while in the background, Caleb repeats what his sister says with varying degrees of success. It's hilarious.
The most serendipitous thing thus far has been last night's conversation with Faith. We sat on the floor across from each other and chatted for a good hour. Much as I wanted to I had to refrain from holding her in my arms. We didn't want to risk anything, especially as she would be in such close proximity with the kids.
All we had was eye contact, and yet that felt oddly sufficient to communicate the deepest of emotions. What Faith probably didn't know was that that hour reminded me of the afternoons we shared more than 20 years ago in Desaru picking up seashells and sorting them; it was exactly then I knew I had to marry the girl. It felt so comfortable being with her, laughing with her and sharing stolen moments when our eyes would meet.
Now married and two children later, it feels exactly the same. We are the same two kids decades ago, madly in love with each other.

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