It’s not tomorrow. It’s today.” Bette teased and watched Angelica’s smile quickly changed to a pout.
“Oh, come here.” Bette reached across and pulled Angelica over onto her lap. Bette kissed the right cheek of a pouting Angelica. “I’m just kidding Angel. I haven’t forgotten your dance.”
Angelica’s pout retransformed back into a big smile and Bette laughed. “Are you excited?”
“Yes.” Angelica smiled. “Ms. Anderson says we’ll practice today, all day.” Angelica dramatized with her hands.
“Yeah.” The inherited goofy grin came back and Bette’s heart did its thing as it always does when she sees it.
Bette smiled. “Okay then. That means you should eat up. I made you oatmeal.”
Angelica pulled her bowl of oatmeal over to her and made no effort to move off Bette’s lap as she took up her spoon and began to eat.
They looked at the newspaper together and for the next twenty minutes Bette delicately explained everything from the weather to fashion to politics as Angelica ate and they read together, until the school bus honked outside.
“Come on let’s get you to school.”
Angelica jumped from her mother’s lap and happily took up her backpack and lunchbox and Bette got up and washed her hands before they made their way to the door.
“Did you say bye to Sonya.”
“Bye Sonya!” Angelica loudly screamed before noticing Sonya was coming downstairs.
“Are you coming to see me Sonya?”
Sonya laughed. “Yes little one. I’ll come see you later.”
“See you later.” Bette looked at Sonya and shook her head as they both made it out the door. She knew if they missed this recital they will never hear the end of it.
However, later that day, by the time three-thirty in the afternoon rolled around, the last thing she had on her mind was Angelica’s dance. She was in deep concentration behind her desk, browsing through the seventeenth of twenty-four Student Art Portfolios. She has been searching all day for something extraordinary to jump out at her but found absolutely nothing.
She had a feeling that special thing was to be in this one - number seventeen - Nadia’s Portfolio.
Sometimes her job was just a drag. After the CAC and the death of her father she was unemployed for so long and those days were so scary and confusing. Not to mention the loneliest time of her life. On top of everything, she had Angelica to care for. And though being a dean is not as rewarding as she had first thought it would be, sometimes there is just this one student who makes it all worthwhile. Sometimes there is this one student whose work makes her want to stick with it.
Nadia Carell’s work is worth looking at.