"Faith misses you, you know," said the wife, over Skype.
My heart sank. I missed the kids and the wife too, badly.
"She has been so moody. Some nights, she wakes up in the middle of the night, and she looks at your side of the bed, and when she doesn't see you there, she makes a wuh wuh crying sound, and cries herself to sleep," the wife said.
Traveling for work and being away from your family for such long spells is rough. I used to travel a fair bit some years ago, but it was not so difficult because we did not have kids yet. But now there are three, and that's three more loved ones to miss. These days, as more and more Singaporeans go overseas to seek new pastures, this kind of thing is only going to get more common.
"She cheered up a bit, though, because your mom took Faith and all of us out for dinner, to eat satay at Lau Pa Sat."
"That's nice," I said, "Should take her out more often then."
"Ya, we all went. Faith, Isaac, Joy, the maids, and your mom. One big gang. Faith enjoyed her outing."
Which explains this photo of Joy and mom that my wife emailed me.
The next day, I called home and asked to talk to the kids. Isaac was his usual cheery self and we chatted about stuff, though I did not understand half of what my almost-three-year-old said.
His older sister Faith ran away twice, not understanding why Papa's voice was on the phone. Celia managed to keep her still in the end, and held the phone to her ear. She did not say anything, because she cannot talk yet, but that was ok. I just wanted her to hear my voice telling her that Papa would be home soon.
Some photos from their outing in this Flickr set.