Naomi was absent. Whenever there is a planned absence, Naomi announces it several times a day for the two weeks prior to the day she will be gone. She had said nothing about being gone, so I was pretty sure she was sick.
Around one o’clock in the afternoon I got an email sent from Naomi’s phone:
MRS. JONES. I AM SICK TODAY, SO I WON’T BE IN SCHOOL. WHAT IS MY HOMEWORK FOR MATH. PLEASE CALL ME AT 5551234567. YOUR STUDENT, NAOMI.
Naomi is never sick, so I was sure this staying at home business and calling for your schoolwork was a new, exciting experience for her. I was so glad when I saw the email. The day had been pretty dull, boring actually, without Naomi. It was funny that she asked for her homework. It was like paying the devil to get work out of her during a regular school day, but somehow she felt compelled to do homework when she wasn’t in school.
I was not going to telephone her because I didn’t want to set any kind of precedent, so I decided to send her an email instead. Three minutes after I hit the “send” button, my telephone rang. It was Naomi.
“This is Mrs. Jones.”
“Hello Mrs. Jones. This is Naomi. I’m sick. I didn’t come to school today.”
“Yes, I noticed that.”
“I called you to find out what I should do because I wasn’t in school today.”
“Well, are you feeling OK? Do you feel well enough to do schoolwork?”
“My throat was really sore this morning. It got sore last night and I woke up. I had a fever too.”
“That’s sounds awful.”
“And I got really pale. I was white. Really, really white. You should see how white I was. You wouldn’t have recognized me.”
“Are you still white?”
“Well, my fever went away, so I’m not white anymore.”
I worked hard at not laughing. Naomi was always a pretty healthy kiddo, and being sick was something new for her.
“We had a test in Math today, but you can make it up when you get back.”
“So I don’t have any homework to do?”
“Not for today. We’ll start the next lesson tomorrow.”
“Well, I might still be sick tomorrow.”
“We can work things out when you get back.”
“I hope I don’t get a fever and turn white again tonight. My mom said she would take me to the doctor if I did.”
“I hope you don’t get sick again either. You should rest and get better.”
“Thank you Mrs. Jones. Goodbye.”
“Bye bye, Naomi.”
Sick days are fun!