Hit another all-time parenting low yesterday evening. The husband had disappeared on one of his epic 'wanna-clear-my-head-and-get-away-from-my-annoying-family' motorbike rides, and I was left to contemplate the utter cruelty of the humidity with two bored, sweaty monsters.
Eventually it became clear that the only remotely hospitable place in the now 98 degree house was lying directly under the fan in the master bedroom. So there I lay, on my back, spread-eagle like a half-dead giant starfish, when Egg wandered in with his trusty pack of cards - sans Dumps.
"Where's your brother?" I groaned.
"Dunno Mama - hey can I play Solitaire on your bed?" he asked.
(Egg's addiction for Junior Monopoly has FINALLY passed. Thank goodness. I couldn't take any more of the tantrums when he lost - and besides - most of the pieces are missing now so it's almost impossible to play a proper game. His 'Gramps' who was recently here, taught him how to play Solitaire, noting that it was the perfect game to play on ones own and least likely to cause the husband and I additional stress or annoyance.)
After a minute or two of blindly calling for Dumpie, I heaved myself off the bed in a sudden rush of parental guilt and quickly ascertained that Dumpie had flown the coop. He was gone.
Mild panic ensued as I called out his name over and over again. Finally, after what felt like ages, I heard a tiny muppet voice, calling from up in the sky somewhere.
"Mama?" he squeaked tentatively.
"Dumpie?! Where are you baby?!" I yelled, scanning the trees pointlessly. I simply couldn't figure out where the voice was coming from.
All of the sudden it dawned on me, and I ran to the side of the house, pushing aside the (I realise totally useless) makeshift 'pushchair gate' and tore up to the roof. The stone roof. The one the children are expressly forbidden to go up to, given that there is a fairly steep drop and absolutely no guard rails or border of any sort.
I spotted Dumps. Standing stubbornly on the far side of the roof, hands on hips, looking slightly bow-legged - not unlike a pissed off cowboy, and stark, bollock naked.
He winked at me.
But before I could respond, the foul smell that had been bothering me since I ascended, finally made sense. Right at the top of the stairs lay a fresh, newly deposited fecal speciman.
"Did you do this?" I asked incredulously.
"Yep. Me did," Dumpie confessed.
He then made me frantically chase him around the roof, his sweaty naked body slipping out of my grasp several times, as I tried to make sure he didn't just run straight off the roof in panic.
A short while later after showering the little monster and putting him in a brand new pair of pants (it is too hot and humid these days to wear clothes, so the lot of us tend to go around 'commando', semi-clad, with all manner of private parts on partial display for all interested parties - there are none) I again resumed my prone position on the bed. Eggie was still playing solitaire.
"Your brother just poo'ed on the roof," I told Egg dejectedly, wondering idly what the chances were that the husband might offer to clean up the al fresco mess as penance for ditching us for so long, when he came home.
I didn't have long to wait, for soon we heard the unmistakable sound of the Enfield's 'putt-putt-putt' engine. Dada was home.
Before I had a chance to speak, he came in shaking his head, asking whether I was aware that my youngest son was in our landlords house, sitting in front of their big telly with his best friend 'Sandkelp' (a 13 year old Indian boy), watching a violent wrestling match between grown men wielding big whips. IN HIS UNDERPANTS.
(No I was not.)
"Oh Yeah?" I said.
"Check out the roof..."