Saturday, June 20, 2009

The Space Between

To all the readers who still occasionally peruse the blog, looking for signs of life - I am well, thank you!

I have been up in New South Wales working and I will be here for about another six weeks. Unfortunately, the only internet connection I get is at work, and I wouldn't really want to be using the work computer to blog, if you know what I mean!

I am in Brisbane right now for the weekend visiting a good friend, Anthony, and I am tired but excited to be finally seeing this town! Now I can officially and finally say that I have been to Queensland.

The Waiting Room

I am sitting there in the waiting room, slowly examining Alain de Botton's The Pleasures and Sorrows of Work (thanks k!) like a fine wine - sipping the words into my mind, swirling it about, inhaling deeply and giving a smug knowing smile as I sample his now familiar writing.

There is a little boy of one, and he looks like he stepped right out of one of those medieval religious paintings - his eyes green and shining, his cheeks red and rosy framed by the golden curls that tail around his ear.

He is an unfair child - the sort of child who evokes the immediate 'Aww...' in you, and makes grannies automatically reach out and cuddle him, and cheeks which draw your thumbs to pinch it, and a smile that would melt a heart of stone - and all this simply by being himself. He is the envy of the other kids, who are throwing tantrums and screaming to be noticed; but all the eyes are on him, and his every move.

This is his first time in the airport, you could see - he is allowed to run free on the carpets of the waiting room, and he ambulates with the unsteady waddling gait of a drunk - he is still learning to walk. It is a miracle he doesn't trip over as his little legs stagger to chase his huge cherubic head, which is leading the way.

His large head is running towards something that has caught his eye - his first sighting of an aeroplane! He runs unsteadily to the glass window, and puts up five little fingers of his left hand against the window to stop his run just in time. His tiny mouth hangs open, his eyes unblinking as he is transfixed by the sight of the large metallic birdie before him.

What a big birdie! Quick! Tell someone! his little heart yells to him, and once again his head pulls the rest of his unbalanced little body towards his father, who is sitting about ten metres away, looking tired.

"Daddy, look, a big red birdie," he meant to say. But he didn't possess the words yet, and so his excitement came out instead in a siren "Oniyoniyoniyoniyo!" he yells, his left arm extending into his index finger pointed at the airplane.

The father smiles, and does not move.

No! his little feet stamp their indignation. You HAVE to see this! Oniyoniyoniyo! His babbling rage continues.

The father looks away, and the child sirens again in impotent protest, fearing that Dad would miss out on this most amazing sight if he didn't move to the window RIGHT NOW. The bird might have flown!

The father, who knew better, just sat and shook his head, and the little boy stood there, befuddled by his father's lack of enthusiasm.

Fine, your loss then, he babbled, and threw his hands down by his side in cute disgust, waddling quickly and precariously to the window once more to gape in wonder at his secret find.


I watched as the father hoisted up the boy and walked him across the tarmac, and up the stairs, the child a quiet awestruck sacrifice as it was eaten up into the belly of that great red beast.

The quickest of stops in Sydney, as I make it just in time to board the plane, and I watched the bright immense lights of Sydney disappear beneath me like a reverse night sky, the stars glimmering beneath me, and one and a half hours later, the clouds on night shift give way to the sparse bright lights of Brisbane.

Queensland, at last.


small k said...

haha loved the end bit about the child being an awestruck sacrifice. oh oops, tht didn't quite come out right.

anyway, you might have heard but I met up with K over v good coffee, and YESSSSSSSS we are going to be good friends and work on changing ALL your buttons so they're spotty :)

K said...

Ok... so I was thinking... maybe it's time to make my grand appearance on this blog.

Ta dah!

And yes.... we are buying those bottons, oops I meant buttons!!!

AnthonyLKK said...

Dr Cheok,
Hope you had a great time. You can find your photos here

pandamonium said...

Auwww... that was one of the nicest descriptive pieces you have. You have effectively made every female reader of yours want to be a mother.

Why didn't you kidnap that baby... I love Bobbleheads!

mellowdramatic said...

Good gracious - three comments on a Monday morning, and the debut comment from my love! Hee!

small k - I have a rising fear in my tummy that the Kk combination is going to be a very explosive one in my life!

My buttons don't need changing, thank you for asking anyways! Haha!

I need to try Seven Seeds when I get home - it's near impossible to get good coffee here! Sorry if I sound like a coffee snob, that's thanks to...

K (Aloha, my love!) - Welcome to the comments section of my blog! Loved the wordplay, in fact, I have just bought Alain de Button's latest - The Pleasures and Sorrows of Needlework!


[Thank you, thank you. I am here all weekend.]

Anthony - What can I say man? I had a really good time in Brisbane, and it is largely due to your wonderful and generous hospitality!

I see you've managed to crop the photo from Cha Cha Char - it looks great now!

Thanks again, my friend, and come down to Melbourne again so that I can repay the favour!

mellowdramatic said...

GCLK - Wow! Talk about coincident timing! I just posted my comment when yours appeared!

Yeah, the kid was so cute that it came through, even in writing!

And if you want a Bobblehead baby, I'm not kidnapping another one for you. Must make yourself! Hahaha!

K said...

Too late... we've changed them all!

The only ones that we have no access to (yet) is your belly button!

mellowdramatic said...

K - Leave my belly button alone. It's already spotty from years of unwash! Hahaha... don'tcha wish your boyfriend was hot like me?

small k said...


both at your umbilical plug & gratitutous use of terms of endearment

heeheehee. just kidding.

oh trust me.. the more you allude to K the more blog traffic/comments you will get.. that always seems to happen to me, hmmmpf.

mellowdramatic said...

small k - Yup... which goes to show that she is the best thing about me!

(My modesty is my greatest virtue. Apart from my unsurpassed good looks and my extra-terrestrial intelligence.)

LiveByFaith79 said...

Where's the bucket.......

small k said...

err yes HK. your intelligence really is of the other-worldy kind.. no wonder you are rarely intelligible to those on this earth :P

mellowdramatic said...

D - Yeah... you will need the bucket to shield your eyes from my unrivalled good looks! Hahaha!

small k - In my defence, gabbla goddy kadjzyktel mitacahi cathess morkandmindy... tee hee hee.

The defence rests its case.

K said...

Let me decipher the gobbledygook!

gabbla goddy kadjzyktel mitacahi cathess morkandmindy = I have a secret fetish for spotty buttons, and I think this Kk combination is one of the best things that ever happened to my life!

k said...

K - the accuracy of your powers of translation are amazing, heehee!

anyway, you may be interested (or not, cos I think the whole spectacle is quite sad!)

LiveByFaith79 said...

yeah.. both my tummy and eyes hurt (from too much of overspowering Good looks.. ... :) hee hee

mellowdramatic said...

K - I see you have your Lonely Planet - Martian guide with you! Spotty buttons, Kk kombinations... It is a good time in my life indeed!

small k - Read the article with much interest... my favourite word of the day is now 'schadenfreude' - secretly feeling happy when someone else stuffs up... Hahaha!

D - Wow, 'overpowering' good looks eh? Hurts the eyes and the stomach 'cos it's that good looking!

I now have something else that is overpowering! (apart from my body odour!)Heehee!