I woke up to a surreal house this morning. Sometimes you just want to be allowed to go back to sleep for five minutes, just so that you can start again rather than because you are still tired.
Slowly I awoke to the sound of an oddly loud and inconsistent clock ticking. My brain tried in vain to ignore it but eventually it just had to know what was going on. My eye was instructed to open (the left one) and there was the answer.
Jamie had sneaked into our bed and was happily displaying his new found talent. There was a little 5 year old hand placed right above my nose, it was demonstrating my son’s finger clicking prowess. Jamie had discovered at the weekend that he was able to snap his thumb and finger together to make quite a satisfactory click; he hasn’t stopped doing it since.
I wearily congratulated him on his talent and laughed. Jamie laughed, puffing his chest out with pride he gave me a cuddle. Daniel dived in from the other side, did a couple of clicks himself to prove a point, laughed and joined in the cuddle.
Then Jo walked back into the bedroom from the shower, took one look at the three of us and laughed, which made us laugh so Jo walked over and dished out kisses to all of us. By this time I was starting to get a bit freaked, somehow I had found myself on the Cosby Show, mornings just don’t start like this in real life. What should be happening right now is an argument over a piece of Lego followed by two boys desperately trying to blame the other one for starting it, or Jo complaining about being cold.
It got weirder.
Theo, sorry Jamie, suddenly started chanting his own, completely incorrect, version of the alphabet. Everyone giggled and then my wife’s teacher instinct kicked in and the next five minutes were spent singing the alphabet. For some reason my wife knows about four million different tunes to sing the alphabet against. The boys both joined in and pulled by the sheer gravity of the moment, so did I (though I got a bit flummoxed because when you sing the alphabet, you are always drawn to the American ‘ZEE’ at the end because ‘ZED’ doesn’t rhyme with ‘VEE’).
As we moved into the fourth rendition, I got Daniel to pinch me because by now we were no longer on the Cosby Show but instead we were on Sesame Street. It had to be a dream. I mooted this theory to the room and as Jo finished singing the alphabet to the tune of Prodigy’s Firestarter, I quipped “Thanks Big Bird, when is the Count coming on?” (The Count was always my favourite). Daniel and I laughed but to be honest the gag completely died on it’s backside with Jo and Jamie.
The morning carried on like this. The boys got dressed with no fuss after being asked only once. Breakfast was easy, there was not one fight and Jo gave out many more kisses than is standard practice. Everyone kept laughing at my jokes. I asked the boys to clean their teeth and off they ran, I listened but there was no row about who got the toothpaste first. It felt wrong; we were back on the Cosby Show again whereas usually we are more like the Osbournes.
No doubt tomorrow I will wake up back in my own house. Tomorrow’s alarm will be the sounds of happy children trying to kill each other, and the loving tones of a wife that has just discovered her husband’s toenail clippings are still stuck on the towel she had tried to dry herself with.
But today was brought to you by the letter ZED and the number 4.