4 a.m., my phone beeps, I press on the button thinking it's my alarm. It's a message. From some unknown number, with lots of numbers that tell me it's not a Philippine cell phone. I have the phone screen about an inch from my nose (still haven't found my glasses so I'm as blind as a bat), and try to read the message: Per chi non lo avesse saputo altrimenti: alle 15:23 e nato gabriele. Molti baci simona
Eh? What? I find my glasses, turn on the light and read it again. And again, until it finally dawns on me, Simona! She's given birth! And her new son is named Gabriele. How joyous for her and Gigi. Plus her first son Matteo is now a big brother. Sweet and happy news.
Another light erupts in my central cortex (apologies to the brain doctors who are cringing at the misnomer), Matteo and Gabriele. Matthew and Gabriel. Golly. That does bring me back. 7th and 8th grade to be exact. The Mayor brothers, longest lashes on the face of the earth, the first Argentines I had met. Made me want to call Patty in Minneapolis right there. But I didn't.
So to Simona and Gigi, their two new angels, warm Manila greetings to you all. Sante.