A series of “bonding experiences”

Today was the first time I’ve had to handle both children on my own. Last year I managed three days in Taiwan with La Serpiente and didn’t kill her, so I was fairly confident I’d be able to cope while my wife was away in Bali this weekend, but when you double the size of the opposing team, you can never be sure.

My biggest mistake today was one of my last ones. After we’d had our weekend pizza, La Serpiente requested we watch some My Little Pony, because it’s not scary. (Unlike Moana, which she balked at the other week, or Trolls, or Zootopia, all of which are too frightening at times for her.) Apart from the lack of artistic value, what could be so bad about My Little Pony? I put it on Netflix and went to run their baths.

I had to come back when I heard continual terrified sobbing from my eldest. I hadn’t realised there’s a grumpy Little Pony who hates happiness and wants to obliterate it from the others, and she lives in the moon, or some such bunkum. Destroyer was happily sitting there absorbing the entire spectacle, but La Serpiente seemed to be frightened witless, and it was only the last minute rescue by Rainbow Horseshit or whatever the name of the purple unicorn is that averted a major breakdown.

Then she said she was too tired for a bath (which I ignored) and then she couldn’t sleep because she was scared of the dark and then she was getting up every half hour to find me and then go straight back to bed… Perhaps she misses her mother, do you think? Destroyer, meanwhile, rolled over on her bed and went straight to sleep, no complaints, not even that I’d had to leave her alone in her room while I tried to settle her older sister. Stone cold, that one.

This morning we’d intended to go to the aquarium, but we started out late and I had to take them to the office so I could pick up my medication. We stopped on the way at Costa to get me a sandwich and both of them free babycinno, which they spend a pleasant ten minutes trying to spill all over me, the table, and themselves, before I took them up to my office and collected the necessaries. By then, the world and his dog had gone to the aquarium and when I heard about 30-minute queues and calculated how that would play with nap time, I gave up and herded the kids to Jamie’s Italian (no he isn’t) for lunch.

Well, I had lunch. La Serpiente ordered the fish, complained it wasn’t the blandest thing in all of Christendom. Destroyer ate the end of a piece of chicken, refused to proceed. Of course, five minutes after we’d paid and left, La Serpiente was demanding food because she was "sooo hungree" but I ignored this, took them home, put them to bed (without any milk, miraculously) and then had to wake them over two hours later. Letting them nap that long was probably a mistake, but given that they went down like rocks tonight, not a significant one.

I took them to the playgym this afternoon. There is now a sign on the trampoline banning adults. I wonder what people have been up to? There’s no sign prohibiting small children with bows and arrows, and today that seemed more concerning. Still, nobody blinded. They lasted 45 minutes until La Serpiente was exhausted, then I took them home. And then the whole My Little Horrific Pony farrago, which was where you came in, dear reader.

So, having had just under 15 hours on my own, I have to say things are remarkably sane so far. Tomorrow we go to the zoo, as long as they don’t go gibberingly insane on me tonight. So I guess that’s very much up in the air.

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