Yesterday I had a dream. The kids were off school, which meant not starting the day fighting through nose-to-tail teenage drivers, soccer moms and testosterone fueled businessmen (yes, I am aware that I have used sexist stereotypes, but if you bear with me, you may feel more sympathetic by the end). The new puppy would have three of us to share the 3 times per hour potty breaks, and I would be able to get endless amounts of inspired writing and expat site planning done. The more observant among you will already have realised that something went awry with this dream from the conspicuous absence of a new post.
The day started well enough, and until 3pm all was going swimmingly. The puppy had remained continent, the carpets unwatered, the Wiggy One had fought hundreds of cyber demons and the Feisty One was working her way through Friends reruns and trying out a nice line in smoky eye make-up. And then the s**t hit the fan. Quite literally.
To be fair, it didn’t start off on the fan. It started off on the bathroom floor, neatly deposited by our new canine arrival. However, in an attempt to cover up the fact that both of them had taken their eye off the (furry) ball, the Feisty One had donned rubber gloves and was using half a rainforest worth of toilet tissue to clear up the mess. Predictably, the plumbing revolted at the cubic volume it was expected to deal with, and promptly backed up. Enter the Wiggy One, whose familiarity with the Xbox controller obviously convinced him that he was SuperMario and possessed superhuman plumbing skills. By the time the stench reached the my office, the Wiggy One was hastily washing his face with the strongest soap he could find, and the bathroom floor, walls and fixtures were coated with coffee colored tissue shreds. The toilet was brimming with good cheer and excitement, a sink plunger was swirling abandoned in the bowl and half an inch of poop soup was sloshing across the floor.
It wasn’t my finest parenting hour. By the time we had the mess cleaned up and the temporary toilet blockage unplugged, I had threatened to take the dog back to the pound, the Wiggy One had learned some new words and the Feisty One was sobbing with misplaced remorse, sure that she and she alone was responsible, despite the fact that she had neither delivered the present nor turned it into a 3D explosion. The only saving grace is that is has inspired learning in my children – the Wiggy One now has a clear understanding of the physics of water displacement, and the Feisty One has decided that she is safer at school.
One of the first questions people ask is whether I worry about running out of material to write about. Yesterday was proof that nothing beats a day at home with your kids for productivity.