Oh friends, life is so strange and so beautiful. My throat is so sore and my voice is nearly gone, the Bear’s nose is running off his face and he probably won’t be able to go to preschool tomorrow, but thankfulness is in my heart and it is well, so well, with my soul.

Today we took the Bear to preschool for the first time (pictures to come) and although he had a pout face when I came to fetch him, being the dramatic character he is, I think he rather enjoyed it. It was such a special first, and so strange to be hurled into it so soon after arriving. But is was so good!


{The Bear, early 2009 (exactly Blake’s age now) — but wasn’t that like, yesterday? And, wowzers, doesn’t Blakey look like this now?! He wore that onesie yesterday! Little snug.}

Blake the Tank had his first trip to Walmart today. He fell asleep in his baby carrier, gently placed in a shopping cart, so for a long time, we walked around looking at all the stuff we don’t need to let him sleep. The twenty dollar crock pot was calling my name but I stayed strong. The $3 plastic golf club set, however, that we couldn’t resist. {A lot of the Bear’s toys are across the ocean and who knows when they’ll get here!}

I drove the car with the Bear as my passenger today, and since I never drove in South Africa {long story}, I think it might’ve been for the first time, just the two of us. I picked him up at preschool and as we approached the car, the conversation went like this:

The Bear: “Where Dada?”

Me: “He’s at home with Blakey, because Blakey’s taking a nap. We’ll see him when we get there.”

Bear: “Mama ih’ driving?”

Me: “I am, my boy, isn’t that special!?”

Bear: {Big grin and a nod.} Perhaps followed by a look of slight concern.

{Fortunately the drive went okay!}

In unrelated news, I almost drove on the left side of the road for the first time today.

We taught the Bear to swing a golf club for the first time today. Here’s to following the many great South African golfers who’ve gone before him: win the Masters and buy your Mama something special, buddy! Alas, he was more interested in pulling the empty rolling plastic golf bag around.

My Mom’s friend dropped off a Chocolate Merengue Pie. First time I’d tried hers. Best. Ever. Had to be mentioned.

Along with those extra special firsts, the oddities of being back here have continued. I’m still thinking about all the people I want to see {and the places I want to make sure to eat} before we have to leave again. I’ve seen people I know literally everywhere I’ve gone today. And I went a lot of places. I forgot what that was like. {Love it.}

The size of a standard sheet of paper looks funny and I want to get in on the passenger side to drive the car. And I haven’t found Rooibos tea anywhere yet and I’m getting a little nervous! And I’m busy trying to decide what words to use to communicate things, based on who I’m speaking to. Examples:

Is that the mailman or the posty? And is he delivering the mail or the post?

Can I still nip to the loo, or should I start going to the bathroom?

Did we push around a trolley or a shopping cart at Walmart?

And do we need to get a cell phone or a mobile contract?

However it needs to be translated, and whether or not I’ve got the voice to say it aloud, I sure am glad to be right here. And here for a while. And that is not a first.

The End.