“Hey, that’s Fakhria!” I said.
“Yes, it is.” Turning to my partner, Grandpa said, “You probably don’t know that in the Seventies we had an Afghan student live with us for a year named Fakhria. That was the year Maryah’s mother was in high school.” She’s the youngest of three sisters. “Fakhria lived with us for a year, and then she went back to Afghanistan. Now she lives in Virginia.”
He led us out into the little hallway, showing us Fakhria’s Senior portrait, and I heard something in his voice that I hadn’t noticed before. I know that family is important to him and Grandma. “They’re the only people who were there with you from the beginning and will be there till the end,” she always says. I know that Grandpa is proud of his daughters and their families. What I heard in his voice that afternoon was that he loved Fakhria as much, was as proud of her accomplishments as of his own girls.