Tuesday, June 25, 2002

Well, it has been a while since I had the time or access to sit down and type. Let’s see, last Thursday Aidan had swim lesson #2. Unfortunately his confidence was quite a bit down after his weekend dunkings. Hopefully Sue built it back up. She did a fair bit with them on their backs – his least favorite thing. Pete took him last night after dinner – they were gone from here at least an hour and half so they must have been in the water a long time. They weren’t home until probably close to 9.30 – they must have been helping to shut down the Y! Pete mentioned that Aidan had a audience but I didn’t get many details. Aidan did launch into an enthusiastic telling of his swim time with Daddy so he obviously enjoyed it. He was mainly interested in showing me how he was hopping on one foot with the other foot on top of the first to impress some girls. Hmm.

Friday Pete left the house at some absurd time to meet Phyllis at the airport. I think she got in at 6 or 6.30 a.m. Aidan and Quincy decided to get up really early too unfortunately – I was looking forward to having Phyllis and Pete here to surprise them when we woke. Phyllis was amazingly perky after a 5/6 hour flight to LA, long layover and then 14+ hrs to here and we all went through the day without a nap. Pete put in a longish day at the office and had to catch the bus home so we didn’t see him until 9.30 or so that night. Aidan was quite happy to have another person to play with and soon treated Nanma to a game of Dinosaur Dominoes and I think Go Fish. I think he found her a bit lacking (compared to Daddy) in playing Frog (frog puppet pretends to eat a lot of things especially Aidan – involves a lot of squealing). Ditto for playing beach ball – she wasn’t violent enough. But Nanma is great for reading stories! Aidan kept bring more “you haven’t read this one in a while” he would say. Quincy was a bit unsure of who this new face was (clearly he didn’t remember back to April!). A couple of times he decided that if she was going to look at him then he was going to let his little lower lip quiver. Fortunately by now (Tuesday) they are fast friends. He was just giving her huge smiles and some laughs just before naptime – not usually a smiley time of day.

Quincy decided on both Saturday and Sunday that he was up for the day at 6 a.m. Pete and I weren’t nearly so thrilled about being awake as he was. Aidan has woken up probably every single night we have been here needing some comfort (or to go pee). Quincy is back to some nights of 2 hours between waking. So then on the off hour Aidan wakes… I am very very tired. Of course Aidan wants mommy… Aidan must be having some scary dreams or something – he tells us he is but he is also smart enough to know that that is a good excuse. He told me he was afraid of a wolf one night (I later asked if the wolf looked like one of several ones we knew – it was from a Sesame St Video Peter & the Wolf) and another that he thought something was coming in his door. Pretty reasonable things to be afraid of. One night he was just dozing off when he rousted screaming. When I went in it was because he could see his shadow – I now normally put his lamp on the floor so it doesn’t cast any shadows on him as his shadow at night is filled with terrors. Anyway, Sunday Aidan was allowed to stay in our room – provided he sleep on the floor. He slept really well and didn’t wake to Quincy’s happy (but piercing) morning sounds.

Right now Aidan and Pete are doing bedtime. Reading the 2 stories. Today it is Dr Seuss’ Wacky Wednesday. I am impressed at how well Aidan can identify the things that are wrong in the picture. Have to say that I was missing things the first couple of times through!

Sunday evening Aidan was finally able to realize his longstanding desire to eat at “the Tall Tower” (Sky City). He would hang out sometimes plastered against the sloping out glass window up however many hundred feet (tower is tallest in southern hemisphere at 1000’) and the ground we were on would keep rotating along… He didn’t usually get more than 3 or 4 feet away from us. Unfortunately it was his 3rd day without a nap and he was showing it a bit. Quincy wasn’t particularly well behaved either. Aidan did have to go poop – and funny enough we had rotated so we were just next to the restrooms. He usually goes with his little seat on top of the normal potty seat but he did just fine without it. Bravo. He is pretty much accident free these days although occasionally he will leak a little a night especially if he has a waking that isn’t tended to promptly. (He is in pull-ups at night just in case). The tower did have a great view. Food was fairly reasonably priced and reasonably good (not outstanding). The deck rotates once an hour I believe. They were unbelievably slow in the beginning although our desert arrived pronto and we ended up being there close to 2 hours. It was also too bad that we were there just a day or 2 after the shortest day of the year. We arrived for 5.30 sunset. It is still a nice view but some of the city is definitely more interesting when you can see the volcanic hills in daylight. The other excitement was that shortly after we arrived we got to see one of the “jumpers”. People pay good money to be suited up and jump off a platform just above the restaurant. He was braced between 2 fixed wires and it seemed like he was definitely going slower than freefall, but he seemed to be having a pretty thrilling ride none the less. And again our table was just going by so we had a good view.

We have had Phyllis down to the village of St Heliers several times now both by car and foot. I have to believe that she could easily find her way there or back. Today while Aidan and I went to Plunket for playgroup she visited a travel agent with Quincy in tow, made appointment for her allergy shot, bought some lamb for dinner at the butcher, and toured through the library – then made her own way home. We have had pretty decent weather for her so far. There was by far our worst storm on Thursday – lasting until shortly before she arrived. We had leaking under the front door – no problem, and a lot on the dining room table (explaining the water damage there), a shingle (cement) blew off the peak of the roof and the cover to the meter box was down the driveway a bit (a neighbor brought the last 2 to my attention). A plumber will apparently make the roofing repairs! I have been informed that plumbers were roofers before roofer specialists showed up. We had a bit of sun for Phyllis to appreciate our view before we headed off to Devonport for a playdate on Friday. The rain recommenced but didn’t impact us too much as we were headed to library for storytime (followed by puzzle time) and then a café. Since then the weather has been accommodating enough to rain at night and be sunny at least in good part during the day. Some wind of course when the dark clouds roll through. Funny enough, Pete came home saying what a beautiful day it was at lunch time – and here that was by far our worst time today. It was mostly warm and sunny – but right around lunch time a dark cloud was blowing through and it was chilly (especially as we were dressed for the warmth when we set out). Of course that was when Aidan and I were mucking around on the beach… Since it is full moon we have been seeing the lowest tides since we have been here. There are various markers out in the bay – the last couple of days it has been apparent why they are there – sandbars have been popping up. A heck of a lot of beach appears at these low tides!

Yesterday we dragged Phyllis along to Mission Bay where we had a brief beach stint (Aidan would have liked it to be much longer) followed by lunch at adjacent Mecca. How civilized. I have to thank Pete for making it possible for me to sit by the waterfront sipping mocha lattes, eating lamb harissa wraps with a coconut sauce dip, roasted tomatoes and salad in New Zealand instead of slogging away in some architects office back home. And Aidan is pretty good company. It will be interesting to see if I can maintain lunches out when Quincy is a bit older. He was obliging enough to sleep through Mecca – but that is extremely rare these days.

Well, I am rambling a bit as I am tired, and I have left out a lot I am sure (like Saturday). So I will head off to bed – or at least other less taxing tasks like watching Sex in the City.

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