The “I don’t know” version of question-asking is in full swing. Many, many, many times a day, Dante will say, “I don’t know [fill in the topic here.]” Most of the time he’s asking a question this way, and some of the time he’s trying to get us to recite one of his favorite explanations, like so:
DANTE: I don’t know where the water goes after the drain.
ME: Yes you do! You tell me where it goes.
DANTE: The water goes into the drain, and throoooouuuuugh the pipes, and then down into the sewers, and then to the water treatment plant!
So here’s the scene: We’re in our kitchen, eating our respective dinners. (We have a bit of an unconventional family dinner arrangement — everybody eats their own food rather than a communal meal.) Laura is preparing part of her food near the scene of where I’ve made my sandwich.
ME: What’s the matter?
LAURA: The smell from that open pickle jar wafted into my nose. [She intensely dislikes pickles.]
LAURA: Oh, it’s no big deal — I just had a reaction.
[Conversation moves on to a different topic. Fast-forward about ten minutes.]
DANTE: I don’t know what was in your nose, mama.
LAURA: [To her great credit, figuring out this question after only a few moments’ confusion.] Oh, I smelled the pickles from that pickle jar. I didn’t like the smell.
ME: Mama really doesn’t like pickles, but I love pickles!
DANTE: You LOVE to have pickles in your nose!
ME: Well, typically I eat them with my mouth, but yes.