Thursday, February 4
Brian and I woke up excited to see Roger and Merry Ann ("MAM") today. Even amidst our excitement, we all seemed to be in a funk. I asked Brian to pray for us and Tisetso insisted I should pray. This is a portion of the prayer:
Me: ...and I pray for Tisetso,
Tisetso: to find my Batman mask.
Me (trying not to die of laughter): ...to find his mask.
Not quite what I was going to pray for, but there it was.
Tisetso seemed a little nervous. He kept saying that they could come tomorrow ("tomorrow" is his code for he doesn’t want to do whatever it is, and seems to be an indefinite amount of time). He wanted Mr. Owl to come, but Grandma and Grandpa Malcolm should come tomorrow. Now the story with Mr. Owl is an interesting one.
Mr. Owl, aka Hedwig from Harry Potter, was bought for Tisetso by our friends, Ben and Sarah, during their recent excursion to Harry Potter World. Hedwig was the perfect addition to Tisetso’s Harry Potter themed room. Before we left America, Brian and I took a video of our home. Part of that tour included Tisetso’s room, which included Hedwig. From the beginning, Tisetso named her Mr. Owl and kept asking for her for some time. Knowing Roger and MAM were coming, we had our friend, Kyle, mail Hedwig to them and had them bring the owl in their carry on. Tisetso had stopped asking about Hedwig and hadn’t mentioned anything about her for a while. The day before Roger and MAM came, he told me they must bring her and it was her birthday tomorrow (today). I told him it was too late for them to add anything to their luggage as they had already left.
Before Brian picked them up from the airport, Tisetso and I finished school (he earned another Lego person!) and cleaned up his toys. When Brian had left, Tisetso showed some signs of being stressed out. I reassured him that Grandma and Grandpa Malcolm were very nice. To reduce the amount of time he had to freak out, I put a show on. Thankfully, this helped take his mind off things.
We were playing Legos when they arrived. Brian had intentionally gone to pick his parents up without us to talk to them about Tisetso and prepare them for a week in South Africa. It went really well. Their entrance was super low-key and they didn’t try to hug or smother him or overwhelm him with questions. They said hello and smiled and admired his Legos (which he was showing off nervously). After a few minutes, MAM took Hedwig out of her carry on. The smile on Tisetso’s face was simultaneously surprised and delighted. He grabbed Mr(s). Owl and didn't let go the rest of the day.
We decided to do an easy lunch of sandwiches to allow time for Roger and MAM to get a little rest in the afternoon. Unfortunately, the bread was moldy. Food with little to no preservatives (as they do here) means you have to eat food quickly. We had missed the window of opportunity for the sandwich bread.
After our weird lunch, Roger and MAM took a few minutes to unpack. Brian, Tisetso, and I were headed to the mall while they got a much-needed nap. At the mall, we rented a car cart for Tisetso, Roy, and Mr. Owl. They had a grand old time while we got our shopping taken care of. One store we stopped at was a mixture of craft store and stationery store. I was in heaven. We managed to find a ton of stickers (seems to be a tall order around here) and found a mask Tisetso could use for playing Batman. I saw a wall of pens, but having a seven year old in the cart who was eager to go or touch everything, we opted to go.
At one point, Tisetso was making a ton of silly faces and I was sneaky enough to capture them with my camera. Not only was he silly, but he utilized the horn in the car (called "hooting" here) to alert people they were in his way and they should move. At one point, while walking behind Brian who was pushing the cart, I saw a women look lovingly at Tisetso (he is adorable). Then he honked at her and exclaimed, "You there! Get out of my way!" Her expression changed and she quickly sidestepped the cart.
After getting back to the flat and unpacking everything, we walked a couple of blocks to a restaurant called Ocean Basket. It’s basically like the South African Red Lobster, but we had been told it was a place we couldn’t miss. Unfortunately, they only had fish on the menu. Tisetso does not like fish, so his meal consisted of only chips (french fries) and a little rice. Our meals were good, but I’m not sure I’d label the restaurant a “don’t miss” in South Africa, especially if anyone in your family dislikes fish.
Walking back was pretty breezy. Thankfully, we didn’t blow away and I attempted to check out some of the tidal pools. I didn’t get very far as the tide had brought in a lot of seaweed and left it to bake in the sun for some time. The smell was less than pleasant. We also saw a dragonfly on the sidewalk. Grandpa Malcolm picked it up to take it to safety (a plant). Tisetso was intersted, but not interested enough to touch or hold it.