Probably three weeks ago, Noah discovered matchbox cars. I often have to gently pry them from his fists when he has fallen asleep at night, so deep is his love and attachment to them. They sit on most of our windowsills around the house, where he can roll them back and forth, send them careening off into the air, or closely examine the wheels from eye level a few inches away. My husband and I have been trying to teach him to make the car sound, you know, brrrrrrrooooom, but for a few weeks we got just a birdlike trill.
Then two weeks ago a high school friend and her husband visited, and it was a beautiful October day so they drove their motorcycle to my house to enjoy the foliage. As the Harley Davidson Road King/Ultraglide cruised into our driveway, Noah heard the unmistakable sound of the engine and ran to the front window to see. Then I heard him say, "Brrrrroooommmm" in his tiny voice, obviously understanding how engines roar and growl. Now when I put him to bed, and we lie in the dark, often before he lets go he gives one last little "Brrrooom" in his sweet tired baby voice.
The explosion of matchbox cars and accompanying sounds in our house has made my husband very happy. Matthew has a particular love of cars, and is famous for being able to name just about any make and model of car that drives by us on the road, as well as detailing various interesting nuances of the engine. My stepson Colby has asked me on more than one occasion, "How does he know that?" I think perhaps Matthew doesn't actually have a job, he just goes off to the library every day and memorizes car data from old Consumer Reports magazines. In any case, with Noah at this moment, it seems to be quite beautifully like father, like son. And I, for perhaps the first time, am learning to appreciate the details of cars, through Noah's studied observation of every line and spin of the tiny wheels. And then just this weekend I wrote "ca", on the piece of paper on the fridge, the tenth word we have been able to make out from his ever blossoming speech.