Outing time

It is that time of year.  School outing time.

I used to get very upset at my dad, being so overprotective and old-fashioned and uncool.  He made such a fuss before he allowed us to drive with anyone other than a certain select group of people.  Which means that I missed out on more than one weekend away / camping trip / whatever when I was still in school.  I decided that I would never be as boring as my parents.

Now here I am.  Last week Carien’s school went to the museum in Cape Town.  I made specific arrangements with another school-mother (who is on my select list of drivers) to take her and bring her back.  We practiced scenarios (Are you going to fasten your seat belt? The other children are laughing at you – are you going to unbuckle the seat belt?  Everyone else is riding loose in the boot of the car – are you going to join them?) until she told me to “please stop now”.  And I stressed that whole day, even after I got the message that she was safely back at my mom’s house.

Boeta’s class went to Giraffe House yesterday.  And again we did scenarios.  And again I was restless until he got back.

I can’t help but be amazed at how I am turning into my parents.  And now that I am a parent myself there is no way that I would allow my children to do the things that I wanted to do so badly when I was in school.

How the mighty are falling…


Faith like a child

I am falling more and more in love with my children.  They are priceless and adorable and independent and dependent and very grown up and so small, all in one body.  Which doesn’t mean that they can’t get on my last nerve at times.  We (I) aren’t that perfect.

Today Wouter and the children drove to Pringlebay to his parents to deliver their trailer.  It has been raining like mad since yesterday and since there were reports of road closures in the Somerset West area Wouter phoned the SWest police to confirm that all the roads were open and that they would be able to get through.

I was barely done with the second chapter of the proofreading that I stayed behind for when Wout phoned to say that Clarens Drive, the only road around the mountain from our side, is flooded.  And he knew that because they were stuck in the resultant traffic jam.  Eventually they managed to turn around and come back home.  MIL had so much food prepared for their visit and then they couldn’t show.

When they got back Wouter told me that, while they were stuck in the traffic jam and waiting to find a spot to turn a Vito and a trailer around, he could sense Carien getting more and more quiet.  When he looked back at her, she was quiet as a mouse, but with tears running down her face.  She was so scared.  I never realised that they’ve never been close to flooding before.

Apparently, when Wouter got out to talk to someone, Carien turned to Boeta and told him that she thought it was time to start praying.  My baby.  My poor, frightened baby.  She told me that she felt much better afterwards, because she prayed that the sun would shine again (Noah-connotations, maybe?) and then the sun did shine for a little while and then it rained again.  But she felt better anyway.

Boeta hasn’t said anything about the trip.  Which means that he was very disconcerted by it and will probably mention it about 3 months from now, when he has chewed it over for long enough.

Sometimes I can’t believe that those two children were born to the same parents and raised in the same family.  Their stress-handling methods are so totally different. And so totally unique.

I think we’ll keep them for a while longer.