This is surreal. I’m sitting here in my kitchen, hearing helicopters flying overhead and listening to the police scanner as they talk about a manhunt that is about four blocks from my home. As Kelley keeps reminding me, there is a river between there and us, and there’s no way this guy can get across that river. Of course, then he tells me, there’s no way they were acting alone, which isn’t exactly helpful.

Will is in the living room watching Netflix and occasionally complaining that he wasn’t asked if he’d like to go to CT (as if we’re anywhere near that happening right now), and he’s pretty much refusing to get dressed anyway. At this point, I feel like if I get a chance to get in the car and leave, he can go in his pajamas, no shoes, and deal with it. James is watching Youtube videos, which is great, except when they’re of fire trucks and police cars and I can’t tell if the sirens are on the iPad or outside. And Lucy, mercifully, is asleep, otherwise she’d be glued to the scanner just like I am. And I don’t think that would be good.

The cats are freaking out, which makes me wonder if they know something, or if it’s just because they can sense how jittery we — or, rather, I am. (The river, Kelley keeps telling me. There’s a river.) I keep expecting to look up and see someone with a gray (or black, or white, depending on what thread I happen to be listening to at the time) hoodie run by my window. Or appear at my front door.

I realize that I am being entirely useless. Although I am sitting in the middle of the chaos, I can’t quite bring myself to get James some cinnamon toast. What if there’s an urgent update between when I walk to the toaster and back? But it is reassuring to be watching the helicopters circle — yes, I’m close enough to be watching them circle, Holy good Lord — on that side of the river and not this one. But I am listening to the talk of getting a bus in to evacuate residents and realize that they are talking about my friend and her husband and baby, Lucy’s cello teacher and family, James’ daycare.

Crazy.

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