Tuesday, 13 November 2012

Lullabies in Brobdingnag

I think my son likes me because I have no shame. This is ironic as this same characteristic often causes adults who know me (particularly his mother and grandparents) to roll their eyes skywards in despair.

I will quite happily sit making ridiculous but giggle inducing faces at him for hours on end, and have little problem in involving him in adult life at such a young age. One of his favourite trips out was the day we visited the solicitor and he sat on the desk leaning back against my shoulder cooing and babbling at every possible break in the otherwise quite expensive and adult conversation between me and my solicitor (and why shouldn’t babies be along for the ride whenever possible? I don’t take him on site when visiting clients, but given the often dull nature of adult life it’s quite fun to see the world through the eyes of someone so tiny that even a small excursion is a journey into the land of the giants... this is another admirable fatherly sentiment and nothing at all to do with the fact that I’m too tight to pay for child care and conveyancing!)

Perhaps my favourite place to take the baby is the post office. The staff there are lovely and always happy to see the baby when we go in – whereas the baby thinks he’s visiting a rather creepy zoo where they only exhibit middle-aged women behind safety glass, so it’s really a win-win situation. However this all changed a few days ago when we visited the post-office with the baby in the carrier and he decided to wake up and howl. The noise was deafening and, as only baby cries truly are, mentally debilitating. Faced with this onslaught I went for the only solution guaranteed to calm a crying baby. In the post office, with a large queue behind me and two slightly bemused ladies looking out from behind the glass I started to sing, not the slightly sad embarrassed whimper that some parents seem to manage, but a full on song, first in competition with, then drowning out his cries. When he realises someone’s singing he stops crying like a car who's tank has run dry, gazes and then forgets to stay awake. I went with the somewhat rude version of ‘What shall we do with the drunken sailor’; within the first verse he was quiet, and by the end he was asleep. Quite what everyone else thought of my singing I don’t know, but I think my son likes me because I have no shame.


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