Wednesday, 25 September 2013

Monkey on the Lam and Lack of Sleep

Did I mention the lack of sleep?!

I haven’t posted in a long time because it actually turns out, and this may surprise you, that (I’m pretty sure no one has ever mentioned this before) being first time parents (are you ready for the big reveal?) is ACTUALLY really difficult and time consuming. I know, right? Who would have thought! So in lieu of an actual post here is a collection of random things that have happened lately. As you read please imagine the screen covered in small finger prints in shades of egg, banana and ketchup. Otherwise it won’t match the rest of my décor.

Two weeks ago the biggest news in my town was a wild boar wandering into the more fashionable of our two shopping malls and running amok. Tiger asked me of the boar had been male or female. I responded that it was probably a young male if it was wandering around by itself. “I think it was female” he replied. When I inquired why, he responded “Because it wanted to go shopping!” So many gender stereo-types already at such a young age (T.T) At the time, I thought “wow, you really know you live in the country-side when a wild boar is the main topic of conversation”. Little did I know that a major story would break the following week that captured the attention of the entire prefecture: A monkey went missing from the mountain where he usually lives! His name is Benz and he is 35, which is about 100 in human years, so grave concerns are held for his well-being. Tiger’s school made a special announcement to all students and a huge effort has been made to locate Benz. The husband and I, clearly not being locals, immediately thought of the Colbert Report:

We are now in week two of the Benz saga and having spent a long time in a hospital waiting room yesterday I can confirm that the TV news is still playing hourly updates on the situation. Additional search party recruits have been brought in. There are several tribes of monkeys on the mountain and Benz was originally the leader of the B tribe, but after a torrid affair with the head female of C tribe he defected and became leader of the C monkeys. Speculation is running rife that he may have tried to return to the B monkeys and been rejected, or possibly had another extra-tribe affair and been caught out by the unforgiving C tribe females. I am not making any of this up. Seriously. This has been a huge story down here. 

The World According to Tiger:

On our first full day with him we went to the pool. He was pretty scared and wanted to know if there were sharks. I said no, just humans. Then my JUST-turned-8 son came out with this gem: “Some humans are sharks.“ Deep kid, very deep.

Two days later we took a train to an amusement park. It was a short walk from the train station. Tiger is not a big fan of walking, but is a huge fan of whingeing.

Tiger: The amusement park is really faaaaar.
Me: Not at all, it’s near!

After a few seconds of pouting he puts on a cute voice and asks

Tiger: Why is the ferris wheel the same size as my thumb?

Feeling happy at the change of subject I put on my best friendly teacher voice and say

Me: That’s because, you know, things look smaller than they actually are when they're far away.
Tiger: Aha! Far! You just said it was far away!

Damn it (>_<)
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Friday, 6 September 2013

When "Baby Girl" Grows Up

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I inherited many things from my father, including insomnia. One summer night when I was four years old and everyone else was sleeping, I heard my father going outside for a walk. I climbed out of my bedroom window and asked if I could go with him. It was warm and the stars were shining brightly. We talked about all sorts of things; rare one-on-one time for a child who is one of five. When I rode on his shoulders I felt so tall I could almost touch the stars. His beard tickled when he kissed me and I giggled uncontrollably. I felt so safe with him, so protected and loved and invincible. I was four years old, and I remember every detail, the smell of newly cut grass and the sound of crickets. I was a four year old girl and my daddy was everything to me.

She has a right to that hug
Veronica Brown is about to turn four years old. She will remember her daddy. She will remember the way his arms feel hugging her tight and the special words he uses when he kisses her goodnight. She does not remember the Capobiancos. She will know them only as the people who took her father away. And in just a few short years, maybe only four or five, she will google her own name and find that the Capobiancos did everything they could to have her father sent to prison for fighting to be with her. What will they tell her? How can they possibly try to justify this to her?

Adoption is a wonderful solution for children who are in need of families. Adoption is not a wonderful solution to get pay-back against an ex by cutting him off from his child. Adoption is not an arrangement to be entered into as a financial transaction. Adoption of a child with a loving extended family fighting for her custody is human trafficking. Removing a child from her father, sister and grandparents because a contract and financial transaction take precedence over what is clearly in her best interests is inconceivable.

She is not an item to be bought and sold. She is a person. She will remember her daddy. She will remember the moment he was ripped away from her.

Further reading at
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