He's grinning. Teeth and shades. The sunglasses remind me of the ones pictured on my Dad back in the 70s. He was in an Arabian desert, flexing next to a jeep with me standing by him grinning. The glasses are gold rimmed, the kind you can see yourself in. Slater has on a similar pair now, and he's waving as he backs out the driveway.
Road trip, the ocean ahead, nothing but time and a full tank of gas. I bend down and force Billy Sue's paw in a wave just to get one last laugh before he turns on the road. I remember this type of excitement, the absolute freedom, and find that as a parent it's just as good watching your child feel it as it is when you experience it yourself. If not better.
Later I've locked the doors, phone my grandmother and find out she and her sister have been talking about how they're worried about me. It seems they're concerned Slater and I were so close that I may be lost without him. I just listen and decide there's no sense in attempting to explain that this feeling has nothing to do with loss.
It's an open road, and this is as close as I've come to taking two trips at once. Joy and gratitude doubled.