My tongue rolls over the gum where my tooth used to be, pushing the suture into the fold of my cheek. It’s no longer numb from the anaesthetic and pain relievers. There’s an ache that hunkers in my jawline, striking out towards the gum when I’m least prepared.
When I was seven I started a new school. My fourth in three years. My third in Australia. I’d learned from the mistakes of the first two schools and was well on the way to camouflage. I had set down the heavy Malayalee-Malay accent I’d arrived with a little over a year previously. I’d flattened and nasalised my vowels, and let my final consonants fall surreptitiously by the wayside. Continue reading “A countdown of years”
I just got back from walking the dog and am seated at the long wooden table on the balcony with my second espresso, reflecting on my family talent for collecting strangers. We’ve always done it. Some of the collections have been more successful than others.
Hooray! It’s the 1st of April and this is not an April Fool’s joke. April’s an important month in my world.
On the corner of the block, at the meeting of two streets, at the end of the lane lived Veronica and Dorothy. Non and Dor, as they were known to everyone in the neighbourhood, were two delightful older women who shared a home. They’d been friends for most of their lives, and when Non’s husband died, Dor moved into her house for company.
Arse over tea-kettle, and over I went. Legs swept from under me, roller skating mid-air like Wyle E. Coyote caught off a cliff, then down with a wallop.
This week Godzilla, my eldest child, began at university.
The same university that my husband and I went to.
The same university my brothers and my brother-in-law went to.
Driving school lessons completed: 6
Vehicle: manual transmission (stick shift), dual control
Driving school lessons remaining: 4
Vehicle: manual, dual control Continue reading “Teaching the Youngest to Drive: An Incomplete List”
Q: What starts with ‘F’ and ends with ‘-uck’?
When my eldest was still shorter than me, still small enough to clamber up onto my lap, take my face in his chubby little hands, and very seriously demand my attention, we lived in a remote town in the far northwest of Australia. (Now he demands my attention by shoving his phone two inches from my nose and insisting I watch whatever video, or chuckle at whatever meme he’s found — like he’s doing as I type this.)
When I was ten years old, my father lost me. Like a set of misplaced keys, or the wallet he was certain he put down on the kitchen table, he set me down, and when he returned, I was gone.