After the highs come inevitable lows. That would be Monday then.
After a glorious and unexpected 3 days off it was back to normal and Hubs was off to work. Hubs slightly sore throat of the day before had become a full blown nasty and I could feel mine beginning to follow suit. Moo was firmly and rather grumpily rooted in front of the morning cartoons and it made me remember just exactly why we don’t have ‘TV’ in France. Trying to pull her away for breakfast was something of a chore, even the lure of eggy bread did not seem to hold nearly the sway of yet another episode of ‘Ben 10’, (in the last few days she has gone from being totally oblivious of its existence, to becoming it’s biggest fan), and breakfast time was not a happy affair.
I had a lovely chat with Mum and dad on Skype who were still in the land of Sunday night, and tried to show them a bit of scenery on the web cam but my little notebook struggled to cope with both audio and video so we gave up on that idea. Without the video link working properly it seemed a very long way away, and whilst I know they ARE a very long way away, it normally never seems quite that far.
We eventually headed out to visit Taipa’s old town area, which is a pretty Mediterranean style village harking back to the days when Macau was a still Portuguese colony. The small multi-coloured houses surround the town square’s bustling open air cafe, although with Moo proclaiming ‘it smells like dog food’. There was little hope we would be eating there today. When I saw a pair of golden arches, they get everywhere, I was fully expecting small one to insist on lunch, but to my surprise she agreed to visit one of the restaurants instead , I’m fairly certain that may have had something to do with the fact I told her she could get a coke float, and the thought of coke and ice cream together in a glass was much more exciting than a cheeseburger. She wasn’t ever so impressed with her tuna sandwich when it arrived, far too much other stuff on it, but ‘helped’ me with my chicken and noodle miso soup until it was all gone, just as well I’m not to fussy about tuna salad.
We wandered some more and back in ‘new town’ found a beautiful walled garden a series of fish, frog and turtle filled ponds encircling a small stone waterfall.
There were ‘cloisters’ around the edge of the gardens with the obligatory exercise equipment and a multitude of delicate bonsai trees on plinths to admire while you work on your joints.
Of course a there was a playground area and it was fully utilised for the next hour or so.
By this point in the day my throat had become rather sore, and I was getting a little grumpy. There was something not quite right about me today, and I couldn’t put my finger on it, but I was feeling very out of sorts. We got back to the apartment and, as normal,I made some tea for Moo, Hubs was having a couple of drinks after work, as normal.
There’s that word again, normal. Everyone doing normal things and having a normal day, the only thing that was different was that we are living together as a family.
The reason for my ‘odd’ feelings today came sharp into focus.
What other people take for granted as normal family life is something that is now so alien to me that it feels strange. When we are at home in France it’s just me and Moo. When Hubs is here it’s just him. When we are together its always when one of us is on holiday, either from work home or school. Our normal time is everyone else’s vacation time. I have to come on holiday to see my husband. And it feels like it’s been like that for too long.
We knew this was not going to be an easy couple of years, but I didn’t know just how hard it would be. The thought of going ‘home’ and resuming ‘normal’ life again without hubs brought the tears to my eyes. I don’t know what the answer is but something needs to change.