The Impossible Affair

16 November 2016, Wednesday

7:20pm. My mobile rings. It’s A2, asking where I was. … What transpired was so endearingly typical of A2 and so amusing I just had to WhatsApp S about it.

Musings

It’s impossible to have an affair when you have four kids that can check up on you anytime, anywhere!

Then again, it’s a privilege to have close relationship with one’s teens, pre-teen and learner-teen.

Earlier on, after school & stayback

4pm+. The kids’ friends I and H visited for a short impromptu playdate. Cos I offered to take them with me when I took A4 to English tuition at LitPlus, and walk them home (nearby) from there. This would give YY a bit of peace and quiet at home, without anymore send-&-pick duties.

The plan for after the playdate was to just send I and H home, and head home right away. So the boys’ pleas to continue their playdate at I and H’s flat were overridden by YY (I and H’s mom) and me. YY’s rationale that there was school the next day stopped all arguments.

So A2 decided to turn back home, instead of walking with us to the busstop. A3 came with us, and then decided to join me on the entire journey. I did phone A2 to let him know the change of plans, but he still preferred to stay home.

~7:18pm. (I remember it was around 7:15-7:18pm only cos we were looking for the 3rd-night super moon, and A3 figured it was too early to spot the moon) It was after all these drop-offs, after the bus ride home, as A3 and I were walking the last stretch home that A2 phoned.

Thrill of the Spill

16 November 2014, Sunday

Every normal Asian mom would have been horrified by me. But I am no normal Asian mom. As my doctor calls me, I’m an oddball.

First real run in the rain

It’s raining. It’s pouring, in fact! At certain points, the downpour rained down with a vengeance. And A2 was with his soccer group, playing in a tournament.

This must be his first really play in the rain. And he looked like he was having fun.

Mommy reactions

Most Asian moms would have worried about their kids falling ill from playing in the rain. I was tempted to join A2. Except that the cold weather from the concurrent rain had made me feel like peeing! I cannot risk getting any colder!

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Little Miss Maths Whiz

8 November 2014, Saturday

7:09pm. At a busstop near Queenstown Swimming Complex after A4’s swimming lesson and a subsequent play in the shallow pool(s). Impatient with the wait for a bus we could take. Verbalised my contemplation whether to take a bus or walk to Sheng Siong two busstops away to get ice-cream. Walking would be over a tiring distance, but would take only 8 minutes. Bus would give us aircon comfort, but it would take 11 minutes to arrive and then still need to make its way to our stop. I couldn’t decide which to take.

After a while, A4 said, “But if we walk slower? Then walk will be longer.”

Busy, busy mind

To have said that, she would have had to process these concepts: 8 minutes versus 11; we could possibly end up walking slower; walking slow would extend 8 minutes to more, possibly exceeding 11 minutes; and if that were so, we would be better off doing the longer wait for the bus.

Moment of pride

Her mind registered and worked out numbers, and facts of life, very fast. And for her age too!

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Who Needs a Sweater when …

14 September 2014, Sunday

A4’s hair was so badly matted after days of not brushing and letting it loose. It took so long to brush through it all that we were all late for church.

Half hour late. Slipped into back-bencher chairs. Less freezing than our usual spot. But still it got cold there.

At one point, A1, patting her lap, asked A4, “Come, A4, wanna sit on jie jie’s (older sister’s) lap?”

A4 obliged, seemingly thinking it was a loving gesture by her older Sis and loving the attention she’d be getting. I am older and wiser, and knew better.

I turned to face A1 on my right, to give her the eye and to flash her a knowing smile. “You are cold, right?” I asked, frankly and almost rhetorically.

A1 smiled back at me with a caught-in-the-act facial expression.

Yeah, that’s right! Who needs a sweater when you can wear a warm body?!

Definitely male

12 September 2014, Friday

Who cares what message is sent by what is said, how it’s said? As long as it produces the same desired result, the goal is achieved!

How more male can one get than this? A3 is definitely male!

A need quite easily solved

10/11pm. A3 emerges from watching “How to Train Your Dragon” in our bedroom. He comes to me in the kitchen where I am baking belated Teachers’ Day cookies for the kids to take to their various teachers in the coming week. He says, “Mom, remember to wake me up for badminton tomorrow morning.”

I agree, but that doesn’t reassure him as we have been late before, due to my staying up late to get things done and not being able to wake up in the morning.

A complication almost overlooked

Then I remember: A4 has make-up Chinese enrichment class tomorrow. I’d be cutting timing too fine if I took both kids along to drop A3 at school for badminton, and then hop straight onto a bus – perhaps with a transfer – to get A4 to Chinese class.

A (kinda) quick fix

I further recall: Dad has his off-day tomorrow I think.

“A3, go ask Kong Kong (ie Granddad) if he can take you to badminton tomorrow,” says I.

“Why must I? … You ask!” A3 whines.

“Just go ask! You have to learn to open your mouth and ask,” I goad (threatened), hinting at an ultimatum.

A few more exchanges and I hear A3 reluctantly (I sense Mr Mature-&-Independent is shy about asking for help) saying something to his Kong Kong.

The quick-fix takes a small detour

Fortunately, Dad is a little hard of hearing and A3 has to repeat his request a couple more times, so I get to hear what he is actually saying.

A3: Kong Kong, you have to take me to badminton tomorrow morning.

Kong Kong: What?

A3, a bit louder: You have to take me to badminton tomorrow.

Kong Kong: (He says something)

A3 is exasperated, so now more audible: Mommy says you have to take me to badminton tomorrow.

Fixing the distorted quick-fix in a flash

I fly out from the kitchen to explain things from the kitchen doorway.

I to Dad: What A3 mean is can you take him to badminton tomorrow morning? Cos I will be taking A4 to her make-up Berries class in town.

Dad, as usual, is more than happy to help where I am shorthanded.

Reflection

I had asked A3 to ask Kong Kong if he could send him to class. A3 told Kong Kong I said he had to.

Both approaches would have produced the same result, that is Kong Kong taking A3 to class next morning. Only the meanings behind both messages were poles apart!

A cold, demanding and ungrateful monster! That was what A3 almost made me out to be.

When Retail Isn’t Therapy

9 June 2014, Monday

Finally purchased the digital drums set for the boys to begin private drums lessons come July with A3’s inspiring first drums teacher.

The trouble with this purchase

Brand new purchases are supposed to be fun and exciting. But this one’s a big-ticket item at SGD1,049; and there’s always that fear that the kids will lose interest or act up till lessons get cancelled (It’s like childhood all over again, except this time we’re at the paying end). And the worse thing was the purchase process was wrought with … well, let’s just say distractions. My WhatsApp messages to S says it all.

Drumming it up

Deed done at 6:15pm with a lot of grief!

While at Cristofori paying, they were all driving me nuts!

A2: Mommy, it’s my turn.
A3: But mommy, A2 doesn’t want to let me play.
A4: Mommy, A3 pushed my head down; it’s very pain.

Facing the music of past hoardings

Then there is the addition pain of clearing out and cleaning up our upstairs study to accommodate the new “furniture” (drums).

All for this moment

Now, maybe the delivery next Tuesday night will be a more peaceful and enjoyable time.

20140614-002346-1426775.jpgImage of MUZA DD512 courtesy of Cristofori