So we’ve been waiting all morning for the delivery guy to come with our 10 moving boxes from Singapore. He’s an hour late now, and it’s not his fault – a customer before me had insisted that this one lone driver not only deliver her bed, but also ASSEMBLE the darn thing.
And so he’s late.
The kitchen trash bin isn’t full but is at risk of stinking (banana peels will do that to anything), so I unlock the back door and step out. We don’t have a rubbish chute because we live in a townhouse. We have a private courtyard between the house proper and our garage at the back, and off to the side, we have a yellow bin for recycling, and a green bin for all other trash.
So I take my kitchen bin out the back, when it seems all of nature suddenly perks up looking real guilty. Two Common Mynas look up in mid diarrhea from my clothes line, while Yet Another mangy neighbour’s cat shoots straight out from our hedgerow to freedom beyond our squeaky back gate. I am actually a lot more annoyed about the cat, and wonder if it’s time for another visit to the RSPCA.
All this takes about 20 seconds, perhaps. I walk back to my door. And realise that it’s closed.
She did not…
I squeeze the bottom round doorknob, turn, and push. Yes. Yes she did.
My toddler had closed the door behind me and flipped up the deadlock. And then promptly gone back to our couch to watch ABC for Kids.
There are many, many thoughts running through my head at this point, chief of which are “I am going to KILL her!” followed closely by “PLEASE DON’T TOUCH THE STOVE!” and then a distant “She’s not a teenager yet. You don’t have to kill her.”
Meanwhile, I am thanking GOD that I had built in a contingency.
Parents out there, listen up. One thing I’ve learnt repeatedly from friends with kids is that Children with Locks/Keys is just a combination begging for a crisis. No matter how careful you think you are, they will find a way to make you completely regret having introduced Mr Jangly Keys to them. The first time that Tony let Arddun play with his keys? Nothing happened. Having successfully lulled her daddy into a false sense of security, Arddun then proceeded on her second outing with Tony’s set of keys to make them disappear into the ether. They were eventually found in a boot on the shoe rack nobody uses because it has too many shoes nobody wears.
Caution, my friends.
After once walking out of the house with nappy bag, pram and baby in tow but no Mummy Handbag, I’d built in a contingency to retrieve keys to my house quickly. This is the first time I’ve actually had to fall back on my emergency keys. So even though I know exactly where each key is, I’m digging around frantically trying to find each one, and praying that nothing else freaky and unexpected has happened like the birds making off with them or me having a false memory of the old hiding places when in fact, I had actually moved the keys again but forgotten their new hiding places, and…
I get into the house and Arddun is so alarmed by the way I’m looking at her – this awful combination of relief, fear, crazy mommy anger resulting from combination of relief and fear – that she starts crying and running to the front door to let the complete stranger in (because hey, someone is such a pro with deadlocks nowadays…), and to score sympathy points. For at the front of the house stands my patient delivery man with my 10 boxes, and I have only gotten into my house just at the nick of time before he thinks to disappear.
So that was my afternoon.
Nothing much happened in the evening. Oh wait. Except for the time we went out to the grocery store and I ducked into the disabled toilet cubicle/nappy change room because it was the only one big enough to put some distance between Arddun and I while I… powdered my nose. Which means the entire time, she’s standing there in her corner cheering, “Very GOOD, Mummy! Well DO~ONE! You (something unintelligible) BEEG GIRL! Toilet paper? Mummy flush?”
She was pretty loud.