One can take negative or positive views about things that happen in life. I try to do the latter, finding that I feel happier that way. It's a cunning plan I know, but it usually works.
Not living with my kids means that I now treasure and cherish all the time I do get with them. Each telephone call, each little interaction and every moment take the form of segments of time that I wring smiles and laughs out of.
And there we were last night. At the 'rents' place, but the 'rents are still at Fidel's place so it was just the three of us. A, the 14 yr old, was on the 'rents' desktop doing revision for a maths exam, or math exam to you lot in the US. K, the 12 yr old, was sitting at the dining table and was on her laptop doing homework, a project on Sri Lanka which pleased me immensely.
Isn't it so last season when people talk about someone being "12 but going on 21" now? Every time I hear one of these statements it's made by a proud parent trying to put across the impression that their precocious teenager is precisely that, precocious. Well, in the case of K, as you're aware if you read here, she's 12 going on some kind of force to be reckoned with.
I digress though. I was sitting in the comfortable armchair reading my current beau. It's called "The Art of The Samurai" and is probably the most beautifully tactile book I've ever come across. I remember when I read Java's great post about sex with "unusual" partners. I chuckled heartily at the tales of chaps fornicating with bikes and traffic cones. Not the same chap I hasten to add, that would be perverse. I laughed with the rest of you at the bit about the guy caught making love to an underpass, wondering whether there was a good back passage joke in there somewhere.
Now I'm reading this book and have just a bit more empathy with these fellows than I did before. There's something about it that might just get me arrested. I find myself stroking the pages to feel the rather sexy texture of the paper, I often sniff and inhale the aroma of the print and paper and gaze at the quite lovely pictures with a faraway look in my eye. I think a whole separate post about the book, maybe with some photographs, will be out soon.
The music was interesting. My life, and the lives of the girls, are full of music. Every car we travel in, whenever we have the option, has music blaring out. A room with one of us in it and no music present is a rarity. Or a library. Life, in the minds of RD and the junior Diasporas definitely feels better to music. It's the same in the minds of the senior Diasporas too I'm pleased to report.
As we did our respective things each of us were in our own world but we were in the same world too, kind of like a venn diagram, it was nice. I rose above the scene and observed it for a minute. A was happy. She had her iPod on and was working, humming to herself and moving around a bit. K was working and had something music playing through her iTunes on the laptop. It was the Ting Tings, I was good with that. After a bit K and I opted for some Smashing Pumpkins as part of our joint drive to learn more about Mr Corgan's outfit. We changed the format, from K's laptop to her Grandfather's Bose iPod dock, and proceeded in the direction of contentment.
K was asking random questions about Sri Lanka and her project and I was only too happy to try to help. About a week ago she had asked me about famous Sri Lankan photographers and I had named that Sansoni chap and the Posingis fellow as examples of the breed. K had spent time with Mr Sansoni when we were in Lanka last so was quite pleased about that.
She shouted something about him, about his photographs of Sri Lanka beign very nice. I agreed, then felt that shiver of nerves and jitteriness that K is so good at making a parent feel. My mind worked quickly and it must have taken me a mere fifteen or twenty seconds to wonder what she was looking at onscreen to make a judgement about Dom's pictures. With the speed it takes a container ship packed full of elephants to turn full circle I stood up and peered casually at K's laptop screen.
My hunch was right. She was sitting there happily looking at Dom's blog, peering with admiration at his photographs, specifically the Sri Lankan ones. And, about 3 inches away from her cursor on screen were the links to other blogs, one of which said "London, Lanka and drums".
My blog gets a few hits these days and that means I have a few readers. However, there are some people who I hope never come across it for differing reasons. Then there are other people who I know will certainly come across it at some point and will probably read it with some interest and cross examine me about things. The girls fall into the second group, but I didn't expect that "some point" in time to be last night. I was unprepared and, just to stress how bad it was, I was unprepared too.
K is the inquisitve sort. She approaches life with wide eyed enthusiasm and a brain like a sponge. I knew that she was only a mouse click away from Kottu or from her Dad's previously unheard of blog. I knew that she might have read the words "London, Lanka and drums" and thought that they look like the kind of thing I'd be interested in. Then in seconds she would have been reading about things that the blogger's daughters did, who are referred to as "A" and "K". You can understand the fear I felt, there would have been some explaining, perhaps a certain amount of deleting of posts and the like.
She asked me more questions about Mr S and his photography, I tried to steer her away from peering at the screen and I felt like a hero in a film, hiding behind a curtain as the enemy searched the room for him. Only I was unsure who was the hero and who was the villain.
Finally, after what felt like days but I know, through a combination of age, wisdom, instinct and my watch, was in fact just about a minute, K navigated away from the page of fear. She was back peering at youtube or something less potentially dangerous.
I breathed a sigh of relief.
It was short and temporary. It's only a matter of time until my sordid blogger's life gets found out.
Then, we carried on with the evening.
We enjoyed it.