August 2. Day 159 of the war.
We had some serious conversations on this day. I got tired of my Dad evading my questions and asked Mom how she survived with him for so many years together when even a simple question does not get a straight answer. She very seriously answered me that she is never bored with him and that he mostly behaved on this day - so he needs to get his "joking energy" out of his system during our call. Dad immediately changes the subject and tells me that he is training Mom to train the neighborhood cats. Mom reports: it goes quite well - they listen to me while I have food in my hand and tell them to follow me.
Mom tells me who called on this day and all the news from different parts of the family and all their friends scattered around the world now. Dad reports on his schedule and progress with the exercises that he is trying. He is playing a lot of chess online these days. We started playing during some of our video calls and then stopped because I felt that we are leaving Mom out. But Dad continued to play online and I am glad he found a way to keep going. He stopped playing chess several years ago when one of my aunts - with whom they used to have epic chess battles - died. He was refusing to play ever since - even with the grandkids. But now he plays - and it tells me that despite everything that is happening in his life, some wounds can heal. August 6. Day 163 of the war.
There was no air raid warning for them on this day - it is a good day. They tell me about the new cat that is now visiting their cat and trying to win my Mom's heart. They teach me different words for different drinking vessels in Ukrainian. And sing me a Ukrainian folk song.