Sometimes, when you are troubled and have that petrified nervous feeling in the pit of your stomach - a feeling not unlike menstrual cramps - and keep adjusting, by a thin hair, the seemingly random, but actually meticulously thought out and arranged (you might have had a dream about how to execute said arrangement) assortment of candles on the dining-room table, the reality of South Africa slaps you in the face.
When you are consumed by the sheer impossibility (you never fokken ever thought it would happen) of the actuality of the fact that in not so many hours you will be at the airport, waving a Danish flag (Don't ask. Let's just call it an ancient viking tradition), and holding up a sign saying Mom and Dad your Viking thought would be a hilarious thing to be waving, waiting for your father- as well as your mother-in-law to clear immigration (Any favors in the form of an anonymous phone call to customs or immigration? Your choice. Anyone?), it kicks you in the stomach.
When you are fearing the discussion over the non-existent television in the living room because what kind of people don't own a proper television and put it exactly where it belongs and what the hell is up with all these clay skeletons you have everywhere, it smacks you upside the head.
When you realize that you have actually, against all possible odds really, truly forgotten to fokken buy more coffee regardless of a certain someone asking you on Facebook whether you would be willing to serve it and now you'll have to find a way to make the purchase on the sly and, boy, how sneaky will you have to be, it knees you in the back.
When you kill the umpteenth ant crawling out of your laptop and again, in a fair panic, try to make sure there are none in the foodstuffs anywhere, it sneaks in a right hook straight into your ribs.
"The panties in the dustbin, you don't want them anymore?" She asks me in a quiet voice over the hissing iron.
"The panties?" I reply, completely bewildered. Because, really, there is no way the maid could be talking about my hole-y old underwear I threw out this morning? Surely? That would be absurd. I must have misunderstood. She couldn't be talking about my nasty, washed-to-oblivion, cheap-to-begin-with, cotton underwear.
What kind of a world would this be if she was?
But she is.
And she would like to know whether she could have them, since I don't want them anymore.
A child of a global world, originally from the land of Santa and cell phones, married to a bona fide viking, and attempting to raise a loud little life who has Down syndrome, all the while getting used to the US Pacific Northwest after many years in Latin America and Africa. Against all odds the kid's first words turned out to be 'mom' and 'book' instead of 'fuck' and 'no'. That may well turn out to have been my finest parenting moment ever.