"We’re here. You have a schedule now, that’s all I’m saying. No more in-between land,” Malky said.

Kivi nodded. “Yeah, I hear you, it’s true, but what does that have to do with a car?”

“I mean we’re driving around the same work car since we landed, we should take care of a car of our own, no? This has been one long bein hazmanim and it’s time to start living normally.”

“Yeah, I hear. I guess. I’m fine with this car, the Accord, I just go to yeshivah and then I’ll be at work, so it’ll do the job for me. Question is what you want to do.”

Malky nodded. He could see she’d considered the question and discussed it extensively. “Batsheva Sitman says you don’t get a van until you have your third kid. Fact. So it’s too soon for that, but a regular car is too small. So I think an SUV is probably the way to go, even though Chayale Landau hates hers, because it doesn’t have power doors, you know, you’re always going in and out, in and out. A van is so mommyish, you know?”

Kivi nodded. “For sure.” He remembered his parents discussing if there would be enough money for a new transmission or not. Power doors weren’t one of their concerns.

“The other thing we really need is phones, using these old work phones was very cute for bein hazmanim and all, but this is the real world. I want to make us appointments at Verizon, okay? When can you swing it? You also need a real phone now, you probably need all these apps for work, right?”

“Whoa, wait.” He held up a hand, but she didn’t notice.

“I mean, forget the banks and all that kind of stuff you’ll be needing, even for how you dress, can you believe that Gitty Karlinsky’s husband has an app that he uses for clothing — what color tie to wear, stuff like that?”

Kivi snorted. “I could, for sure.”

“Like, he takes a picture of his suit and tie, or whatever, and it tells him…”

He wanted to go back to discussing the phones, but Malky was looking so enthusiastic and carefree — it had been a while since they’d had such an easy, pleasant conversation, he had to admit — that he left it. He remembered one of his own sheva brachos, an elaborate affair in some dark warehouse-y restaurant where you couldn’t see the food and the impersonal speeches were about “doing for the klal” and “vision.” The entertainment included a Russian award-winning violinist and a popular chassidish comedian they insisted was a badchan. The cute little fellow stood on a chair and spent 22 minutes sharing his very skeptical view about marriage. (Excerpted from Mishpacha, Issue 715)