Fifth birthday

Today was La Serpiente’s fifth birthday, so after opening presents from my parents and sister, we took her and Destroyer out to Halifax. We had breakfast at Jacky’s Cafe, a surprisingly good Chinese restaurant in a shopping mall, then had four happy hours in the Discovery Centre down by the waterside.

The Discovery Centre has lots of rooms upstairs for different occupations – you can play at being a farmer or a doctor or an actor or a supermarket worker or a musician or somebody who makes bubbles. We alternated between minding the girls and sitting at a table and drinking coffee, and eventually went down to the basement (the Centre has four levels, including a staircase which plays different notes every time you take a step on it) where I found La Serpiente had a new love for Lego Mindstorms. Maybe that will be her sixth birthday present.

After that, we headed through town, stopping at the Wired Monk, where my wife had a three espresso-shot chocolate and butterscotch monstrosity of a drink and I had the World’s Largest Vegetable Samosa, and the kids fought over chips. That teed us up nicely for a visit to MEC, for me to get a new bag and some climbing trousers and for my wife to get climbing shoes. And for the kids to go crazy for an hour, then meltdown when we made them walk to the ferry terminal.

This short burst of tantrums dissolved when they got to play on the submarine-themed children’s play area, and then we coaxed them to the ferry, via the boardwalk and a vast number of dogs people were walking. Then from the ferry we walked home, with me carrying either child every so often as they succumbed to exhaustion / fell over / argued about whose turn it was to wear my hat. The wind blew, and it was a regular Halifax summer’s day. All 11 degrees of it.

Once home, the girls were contained for a while, mostly watching Paw Patrol for a couple of hours while we got dinner ready, and then we rolled them up to bed to read some personalised books. Print on demand is a pretty special thing.

And thus to bed. I have a five-year-old. How did that happen?

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