Chapter 14 - Almost there

Almost there

Language level: lower-intermediate

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Conci’s belly is bigger now and she says that she can sometimes feel our baby move.
She has crazy dreams and moves around in her sleep.
 Yesterday morning in bed she had her hands on her belly and she said: “Darling! Last night I felt little kicks!” 
“Yes, I know, that was me!” I said, “please stay on your side of the bed!”

Then in the afternoon I said something a little sexy and she said “Sssh! He can hear what we say!” 
“How do you know that?” I asked. 
“It was in my book, babies can hear every word you say, even if they are inside the body” she said.
This made sense, but the fact he could already understand both Italian and English was a miracle.
 “So the fetus is already bilingual? Wow!”

Neighbours

My neighbour Pino says this about his dog.
He has a little Yorkshire Terrier called Bonzo and he insists that Bonzo understands everything he and his wife says. His wife is Chinese.

Well, I hope they’re all wrong because, if they’re not, then I am profoundly stupid because I’m sure I couldn’t understand two different languages when I was a four-month-old fetus and I definitely can’t understand all the languages Bonzo knows. That dog is a genius.
 I can hear Pino sometimes shouting at him: “Bonzo, how many times have I told you not to eat my shoes! Do you know how much they cost? What am I going to put on my feet now, to go to work?” Then his wife will start shouting at Bonzo in Chinese.
 So the dog that eats people’s shoes and urinates on my balcony can speak fluent Italian and Chinese! So what does that make me?

The big moment

This afternoon we went for the third scan and we were particularly excited because today they told us the sex of the baby.

Until now, when people asked me the question “So, what do you want? A boy or a girl?” I always answered:  “I don’t care, I just want the baby to be healthy,” but in my heart I wanted a girl.

I had dreams about this little angel dressed in pink, adoring me and me adoring her.
 My plan was to let her go to school in the city and then on her sixteenth birthday we would move to Siberia, where there were no men to break her heart.

“It’s a boy!” the doctor announced.
 I was happy, but I did cry a little for my baby girl. This sounds crazy, but in my dreams it was like I had lost her.
 When we were back at home we started talking about names.

“I want our baby to have the same name as my grandfather Salvatore,” said Conci. 
“Salvatore Sloan?!” I said, “no!” 
“Then he can take my surname!” Conci shouted “Salvatore De Luca!” 
“No!” I shouted back.
“Listen! I have this baby inside me, I will be the one who has to suffer, bringing him into this world! “ 
“I am suffering too, Conci, because you talk about nothing else!” I shouted.

Kind words

I immediately regretted what I had said. Conci ran out of the room.
I went into the garden. It was very cold, but Pino my neighbour was out there smoking a cigarette.
“Sorry about the shouting,” I said.

“Listen,” Pino said, “I’m sorry, but I have to say this. You really should think more. You just seem to follow your impulses too often and this is why you’re always in trouble!” 
“Thank you, Pino,” I said.
“For what?” he asked, “I was talking to Bonzo!”
 And there he was, the multilingual dog, peeing on my tree.


Glossary

belly - pancia
little kicks - calcetti
this made sense - questo è comprensibile
my neighbour - il mio vicino di casa
so what does that make me? - e allora io cosa sono?
scan - ecografia
healthy - in buona salute
I... regretted - mi sono subito pentito di...
peeing on my tree - che faceva pipì sul mio albero


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