Every good parent needs to scream at their kids regularly – I recommend five times a kid before lunch – and so I’ve given my son Jon a good tongue-lashing over what he brought on all of Toronto and Hamilton and beyond this last little while.
Jon is the member of our family who wished for there to be LOTS of snow and ice and anything else as Canadian as possible while we were out of Africa and, for these past three weeks, back in Canada for the holidays, our first time in five years.
So, sorry about Jon, everyone. Hope your heat and lights are back on without problems by now and you’ve put the BBQ back outside.
“Careful what you wish for, son,” I told Jon in a calmer moment while looking out at Ice Storm 2013. “You just can’t go asking for stuff like this.”
“Dude, would you wish for a new i-pad for me?” said Liz.
“It’s not really your fault,” said Hannah. We were watching on TV, for the first time ever, the NHL’s Winter Classic. Watching all that white.
“It’s Nobody’s fault,” added Hannah, with some thought.
Of course, Nobody is the culprit for a lot of stuff that goes down in our family. In fact, Nobody and Hannah have a very close friendship.
Mom didn’t say much for a long time. Then the power at Bayview and Sheppard, at Pappa and Granma’s, went out yet again, just last night, and this put a crimp in Mom’s plans.
And while Mom didn’t mention Jon by name, I can read her mind by now, almost as good as she can read mine, and she wasn’t thinking pretty thoughts.
Then a few hours ago at Pearson airport we were all sitting on the plane, all 387 of us, and the fuel truck froze. This is how the captain put it. This was the delay on take-off on what was apparently Toronto’s coldest day in nine years.
So we sat. And waited. And looked at Jon. All 387 of us.
Now we’re at Huxley’s at Heathrow. In London it’s raining outside. Jon is on the laptop playing games. Winter games with lots of snow. It’s 3 a.m. Canada time.
And I’ve told him that if I see just one flake outside, I have glue, tape and staples to work on keeping his mouth and the weather under control.
And I can always yell at him more, at least until we arrive back in the tropics of East Africa.
Sorry about this too, about having to mention such beauty and warmth at a time like this. But I think Uganda, from anything I’ve noticed in the past nine years, is one part of the world that’s a safe bet with the weather.
If not, we can always sell our lad to NASA and send him to some other planet.