Thursday, December 02, 2004


I hadn't posted this yet because I was waiting for some pictures. I still haven't got those, so I thought, sod it, and just go ahead and put this out. I am torn, you must know. One day I want a baby, a wonderful little thing like Jessie. It is so much easier to live if you have something to live for. But then I think, do I really want to subject a child to a mentally cuckoo mother? Oh well.
Anyway, here it goes, one of the most wonderful days of last summer...


One weekend in August, Sabine and I took little Jessie to the zoo. Our concern that she would be too little for it was completely unjustified. Jessie was wide awake and absorbed all the new impressions with amazing awareness and intelligence – it was a joy to watch her.
We rented this little cart in which we dragged Jessie around, and of course, she loved it most when we raced.

Just to keep this post readably short, here is what happened. And keep in mind, she is only 1 year old.

Jessie entertained all the local grannies by insisting on pushing the cart, eagerly toddling behind it, with an expression of great endurance, for what must have been the baby equivalent of 10 miles or so.

She pet her first donkey. A delightful experience, but not nearly as delightful as watching him pee.

She dumps all the exotic animals if she sees a dog. Once the dog is spotted, it will be persistently followed around and observed with facial and verbal expressions bordering on divine exultation and amazement.

She likes bratwurst. Good German Fraulein.

She is not too keen on birds. Except penguins. And sparrows she can feed.

She is a big flirt. She would follow a boy of around 2 and repeatedly attempt to pinch his bottom. We thought it was hilarious, I am not so sure about the boy and his parents.

Polar bears (any form of bears, really) are her favourite. I have never seen her so excited. She would point madly and pull her astonished face ™, accompanied by her trademark “OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOHS” and “WAAAAAAAAAAAAAH” (early form of “WOOOW!”). She pet the statue of a bear, saying her first clearly audible “Ei Teddy” (baby talk for “Dear Teddy/Pet the teddy”).

Ice cream is a complicated and messy - and COLD – experience. Delightful nonetheless.

Monkeys like Jessie. Jessie is not sure about monkeys, but has at least a positive tendency towards them. I must work on that.

Jessie did her first attempt at whistling after noticing that the grey parrots answer to it.

Judging from Jessie’s face, elephants are wicked awesome.

The Porcupines had babies. Jessie was thrilled to see that the poky little things tried to climb up the wall towards the coaxingly snipping hands and the smacking sounds the visitors made.
She imitated it right away, but I think she misunderstood the smacking sound – because that is her way of saying that she wants food… maybe she thought the porcupines were tasty?

Jessie usually is an absolute low-maintenance baby. She hardly ever cries, she sleeps well, she is a bundle of joy (excuse the cliché). Funny enough, until recently the only time she cries and goes ballistic is when you want to change her nappy.
So there were Sabine and I, two grown women, feeling foolish in a baby changing room, wrestling with Jessie, finding ourselves nearly incapable of performing an ordinary task such as attaching a clean diaper to the kid.

I could bite myself because the batteries of my camera ran out pretty much at the beginning, so I only have a handful of pics.

We got to see about half of what we wanted to show her, but Jessie got really tired and cranky, and so we left.

Jessie was asleep within two minutes of the car being started. She never woke when Sabine lifted her out of her seat, gently as if she was made of the thinnest crystal. Sabine’s face expressed how taken she was with holding this perfect little girl who rested her head on her shoulder, so trusting, all-goodness-expecting, so dependent and so at peace with it.
Sabine held her like she was the most precious thing in the world – and she is. She had the same expression back then, at Salisbury Cathedral, when these Russian choir girls started singing, their pure voices echoing almost otherworldly from the vaults, touching her to tears.

I may have mentioned this a million times before, but I am in love. I love Jessie more than my life.

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