The next morning, I look over the records, and they’re still not making tons of sense to me. I can make out the names but that’s it; I don’t get it.
I email Mr. Faraway: Do you have Skype? Can you explain this to me?
Sure, he says.
And as The Child sleeps late on a Sunday morning, we chat via webcam about old German towns and how to make sense of ancient Catholic church records. He’s in rumpled, comfortable clothes, and behind him is quite the mess of a bookcase; I joke about it and he says, I know, I know, and laughs. He keeps getting up and walking off camera, still talking – very nervous, very animated. He also keeps coming back, with more and more things he wants to tell me and show me.
But whenever I talk, he stops and listens.