Adventures with the Toddler – Chapter Twenty-four: Park Life

Today the toddler and I spent the day at the park. Along with playing on the swings and slide, we enjoyed a cup of tea with sprinkles on top, chocolate cookies and a stew. Sand is an amazing item in food preparation in Toddler park life.

I have been in Melbourne for 9 days. I took a few extra days off work to have a good time with the wife and toddler. Well – mainly the toddler as the wife being pregnant and all can’t drink or climb things and isn’t interested in adult cuddles so is a little boring at the minute – (I kid. It’s a joke.)

As some of you know – I’m quite a sensitive bugger. I was looking for a video game to play with the toddler as it’s developed an interest in my Xbox. I’m happy about this as maybe now that it knows it’s an awesome machine of adventure – the toddler will stop mindlessly opening and closing the drawer on it and turning it off-and-on, putting crayons in it and messing with my controllers.
As I was searching for a game to play, I started to feel a bit sad as I was heading back to Queensland. Not that I dislike Queensland at all, but because I’m leaving the toddler again. You know what it did? It picked up its guitar and started strumming. Now don’t be thinking it was a Gary Moore standard of guitar playing. It was a toddler strumming a guitar to cheer me up. “I’ll cheer you up da.”
An out-of-tune rendition of “rockaby your bear” then ensued and I lost the damn plot. The toddler patted me and told me to cheer up. It’s 2! It played me a song on its little pink guitar to make me feel better. Who is this person?
To top that off – it also gave me random kisses all day. We’d be sitting drinking our tea made of sand and it planted a kiss on my shoulder. “I love you da.”
These random little kisses happened all day. It was so lovely. Why? Why be so cute and lovely when I’m leaving!? Just the night before it had frustrated me relentlessly by getting me to tie knots in its spaghetti before it would eat it. Every. Bloody. Strand. “Daddy has to get this rewrite done darling.”
“Tie it da!”

We have had many great adventures since I’ve been back. Once of which was taking it into the boys toilet for a pee
It was very uncertain of this as it turned up its nose as it looked about, “da, are you sure about this?” it asked as we entered the hell of the male toilet at a winery during an Easter party. Dante should have visited one of these for his research. I had to explain to the toddler that da’s couldn’t go into the girl toilets. Poor kid. The wife got most of the toilet duties after that. But the toddler is toilet trained and doesn’t wear a nappy. Sleeps through the night without having to piss. I’m jealous. I’m up at least twice. Seven if I’ve been on the turps.

Tomorrow I go back to 1957, I mean Queensland. But 9 days ago – this journey began and this is the tale—

There I was – Terminal 4 at Melbourne airport. The asshole end of Tullamarine. I was on an outer wrinkle of the anus this place is. Hauling ass across the ridged tarmac it is to get to the waiting wife and toddler who had already been waiting 10 minutes. I’m walking fast to baggage claim – not knowing there was four miles of walking ahead of me before I got a sniff of the baggage claim. Four miles – because poverty dictates, one may not have nice things…

But previously that evening —

I arrived at Coolangatta airport very early for my flight. I arrived early as I’m a little paranoid. Scenarios manifest in my head of what and why, and what if this and that happens? So I’m a bit mad.
You still following the yarn? In a nutshell, I would prefer to twiddle my thumbs somewhere watching the oddness that is humanity, than be late. This is a sickness. Being late for anything sends me into a state of utter panic. I set 2 alarms each morning and I wake up a good 3 hours before the first bastard is meant to ring. Maybe I need to talk to someone about this and let go of whatever it is that thethers me to normality and bullshit. Sleeping through an alarm is something I have never done.

I was about to check in for my flight that was to leave in four fucking hours when I got the idea – “can I bat my eyes at someone and jump on an earlier flight?”
The negative angel said, “you daffy prick, it’s Easter – everyone booked these flights months ago. It’s a low budget airline. You’re screwed.”
I asked anyway and was sent to a service desk.
The dude was asleep. His fingers were moving, but he was asleep. I know this as I was witnessing it and it happens to me quite a bit. I stood there for a full 5 minutes as I scanned the place for anyone who might bust the fella so I could warn him.
I did the ol polite “cough” and he came awake with slight alarm as it was my face he woke to. He muttered an apology as he put his phone away. He may have just been updating his status and not asleep after all. Anyway – my interaction with this man from Jetstar was the greatest experience I have ever had with them. Ever. He was an absolute gentleman, got me on a flight that arrived in Melbourne at the time my original flight would have been leaving the Gold Coast. I paid no extra dollars for this which surprised me, “we’ll do this for you at no extra cost.” Well, I nearly fell on my knees before him. When I got on the plane – I had a $10 credit. What the hell good fortune is this? A wine costs $10 on a Jetstar flight. Fill my glass and let the holiday begin!

Previously on the toddler blog —

After my journey through the bumpy underworld of terminal 4 – I raced to the pick-up to meet the wife and toddler. I was huffing it – not because of the aching need to see the toddler person, but because the wife was putting the hurry-ups on me as the toddler needed to piss. I hurdled a drug dog, German tourists and a baggage trolley of fancy suitcases on my elegant dash to the meeting point. Anyone who has seen me run will testify that I am graceful like a gazelle.

I arrived in what appeared to be an Uber parking lot and looked around for our car. Then I saw it. The toddler. Running full pelt like a crazed little wombat and screaming “da”! as it hurtled toward me. I threw my bag to the ground and grabbed it. Hugged it to me so hard I squeezed a fart from it. It kissed me, “I really missed you da. It’s good you’re home.”
Holy hell. The language on it. It had grown so much. We held onto each other for the longest time and I noticed an old lady in a car beside us crying as she watched us.

“Mama’s waiting.” The toddler leapt from me. I picked up my bag and it took my hand. Leading me into nearly 2 wonderful weeks in the company of this awesome little human.

If only the moments that truly make up what matters in life could be stretched a little longer. But I guess the point of a moment, is in noticing it.

Toddler fact: It can eat its body-weight in pistachios. As long as da opens them.

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