17 January 2011, by Daphne Ling
We were just done with our usual weekend brunch at the airport when they saw this gazebo-like structure with lots of flowers and made the husband push them there in the luggage trolley. It’s this thing they do where they both sit on the ledge of the trolley with their legs dangling out and they shout orders to daddy to GO FASTER without getting caught by airport security.
I’m usually standing a distance away because those security guys walk around with large machine guns. I’m not about to mess with that. Also, a dude pushing 2 kids around can get away with being spontaneous and fun but a crazy chick running after them – kind of hard to explain.
Instinctively, he reaches out to pluck a flower for Kirsten. “For mei mei,” he says, gesturing impatiently like it’s something I should already know. Every time he sees bunches of wild flowers, he yanks out one and gives it to Kirsten or momma or grandma, looking all chivalrous.
But obviously these weren’t wild flowers and whoever planted them lovingly would frown upon having them murdered so I tried to explain that he wasn’t allowed to pluck these flowers. He nodded, turned to his sister, put his arm around her and I was expecting him to say something sweet like “it’s ok, Truett will get another flower for you next time” but instead he told her, “Truett cannot pluck the flower, mei mei go pluck for Truett.”
By the time I have 5 kids, I won’t be surprised if he has a whole child labor syndicate going on. This is how it all starts.
Daphne blogs at www.motherinc.org.