Singapore blues




I had a dispiriting day at work where I didn’t really get much done, and left at 6:30 feeling like I was skiving off early rather than leaving half an hour late. Even taking a client call on the way home and having to placate somebody ranting about poor service from a different company didn’t do much to assuage my worries. But I’d had the best day of us.

My wife had managed to tip a saucepan of hot water over her arm while making burrito fillings, and had burned her forearm. It’s a nasty shade of red from wrist to elbow. We commiserated about this while she tried to sort through the cornucopia of Tupperware in one of our ant-filled cupboards, until we heard a horrible gagging noise.

Destroyer was choking on a piece of apple that La Serpiente had left on the table, just inside her reach. Her face had turned a nasty shade of purple and she was looking at us with horror, while struggling to breathe past the inappropriate piece of fruit. I picked her up and turned her upside down then gave her a few taps on the back, and normal service was restored, but that was a few seconds of panic that we really hadn’t needed to have.

Thankfully, our daughter doesn’t have much emotional inertia. She may have been on the verge of choking a few seconds before, but as soon as the apple was out of the way, she was quite content again. At least until bathtime (when she used to be reliably happy, but now is always upset when her hair gets washed) and until bedtime, when she refused to sleep. La Serpiente pulled a similiar number tonight. Unlike yesterday, when she was so tired that she went straight to sleep, tonight she was up and down and up and down until my patience was a virtue hard to make out in the rear view mirror of my mind, and I was desperate with rage, hunger and frustration.

Still, at least my wife and I can sit together in the hallway outside our kids’ bedrooms (that room that used to be our bedroom, and the room next to it that’s full of soft toys and books) and bond over our shared devices.

And it’s not raining.


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