It is 7.00pm. Faith decides to run to the balcony at my mom's and scale the ledge to look outside. The newly-installed grills were not closed, and it was an open invite for her to do her Spidergirl thing. Mom, my wife and I shout and dash after her. I am the fastest and get to her first, yanking her down and back into the living room.
After the excitement dies down, I have to leave the house to get some air, and to let my blood pressure, which spiked from the adrenaline rush, subside. It is already giving me giddy spells.
What does a man do to cool off when he just pulled his firstborn autistic daughter from climbing over the balcony ledge? He goes to the petrol kiosk to top up petrol, pump up his tires, and get his car washed and vacuumed.
Full tank, properly inflated tires, clean car... if only a man can go to a petrol kiosk to get himself fixed up so easily.
I decide to drive to the central to walk around our tiny suburban mall. I get out of the car and begin my walk across the car park when I notice the car to my right stop and its white reverse lights come on. I leap out of the way before the driver reverses into me, and through the window, he waves in apology to me. I am too tired and zoned out to get angry.
The wife calls and says we are out of rice milk for Faith, so since I am here, I go to the supermarket to pick some up. She tells me they already packed my dinner and brought it home, since I left after the climbing incident, before dinner started.
I get home and the kids are watching TV with the wife.
I eat my dinner in the kitchen, and Isaac comes in to bug me for a taste of my fried chicken and tofu. I sit him down on a chair after he keeps climbing onto the table to get a bite from me. He sits quietly and only makes happy noises when I give him his share of my food.
It is 9.34pm. The wife tells me that the new cot is too low for Celia and her, so I take out the trusty allen key, and raise the base.
It is 9.52pm. We hear meowing at the door.
I open the door to see a white kitten, with lovely eyes and a bushy white tail, standing in the corridor. It must have taken the lift up by mistake.
Cat decides to let itself in, and Isaac is taken with it. It would be nice to to keep the fella, but we already have our hands full with two kids and the third one coming the next day. I manage to carry the cat into the lift after it slips out of our grasp a few times, slipping into our home. Isaac cries as I take it with me to the lift, and I tell him, sorry boy, we cannot keep it. Papa will take it downstairs, ok?
Isaac does not understand me, nor is he pacified. I find myself talking to the cat in the lift, telling it why we cannot keep him, and why it is better for him to be downstairs than hanging around our corridor. It follows me as we walk along the corridor, and after a distance, I turn and walk away. I can hear it meowing from behind the pillar, and I glance back to see that the other strays have already hooked up with it. I take the lift back to my flat.
The wife comes out to the living room, where I am doing my nightly surfing, and joins me. Faith is asleep. It is 12.15am, and we cannot sleep.
I ask her if she's gotten everything packed. She says yes, except the "miniPod". She still calls it that. I ask her if she is okay with the name we chose for the girl. She nods.
We don't say much after that. We don't need to, because we know what the other is feeling. We're just happy to be in the same room.
Less than eighteen hours to go. And in another 5 hours the wife needs to wake up to have a bite, because she is not supposed to eat or drink after 6am.
It is 12.17am, and we cannot sleep. I think it always like this when it is the night before a big journey.