The two weeks of school holidays are coming to an end.
Alfie has no complaints; he’s had a fabulous respite from school despite being devoid of friends. They have all either been away or placed in vacation care. So it’s been pretty much just the two of us which I have enjoyed and valued despite the mild anxiety of every day thinking of all the things I would normally be doing that I’m having to shove to one side.
Other episodes of anxiety are caused by wondering how to amuse this eight-year old boy. Today however was well planned. Alfie is a climber; he’s been climbing the door frames and scaling the kitchen cupboards ever since he learned how to walk. While I’m always impressed to see him sprawled out like a spider on one of our ceilings, Carl can’t see the talent for the marks on the walls. How does someone who showers every day have such dirty feet?
If you follow me on Instagram you would have seen recent images of Alfie scaling the outside of the house and roosting at the top of fig trees. But that’s all a bit unsafe and some other parents have walked past these fig trees saying wise-owl-style, ‘That’s very high up you know’, like somehow I hadn’t noticed the obvious.
So I thought I should take him somewhere where he could get all of this out of his system and so I booked him into two hours of indoor rock climbing at Climb Fit in Artarmon. I booked a belayer so I could take photos (and sit down and read the paper). We arrived first thing in the morning and by sheer good fortune the centre was virtually empty so there were no crowds or noise and Alfie had the run of the place.
Alfie told the belayer that he wanted to try the overhang but that he wasn’t sure he had the confidence. She had Alfie try a number of different courses and gradually built up the degree of difficulty by having him first try the green markers then the blue, then the yellow. She said he was a natural which was encouraging after being told at swimming lessons, ‘He’s uncoordinated’. A bit brutal!
Alfie did make it all the way to the top of the ceiling and he did start on the overhang. He managed to get halfway across before fear set in so down he came. Not a bad effort for his third climbing session.
As the centre was quite empty, Alfie drew an audience of instructors who were all impressed at how well he did and so it was suggested he join the after-school group. It’s every Thursday afternoon from 4pm-5.3opm. As there wouldn’t be any point in me dropping off then picking up, I’ll have to stay at the centre every Thursday afternoon. So that takes care of my Thursday afternoons from here until Christmas! Slight anxiety setting in. It will be a good chance for me to catch up with you all on Instagram and Twitter!
After the rock climbing I took Alfie to one of his favourite restaurants, Sushi Train in Neutral Bay. I think all kids like these restaurants because they get to grab what they want and let all those dishes they’d rather not have, slide on by. The first plate Alfie picked up was chocolate mousse – so Japanese!
Then we went to the Hayden Orpheum Picture Palace to see Gravity in 3D. It’s so wonderful that Alfie is getting to an age where we can go and see movies that both of us enjoy. Having done two sets of parenting I have seen so many kids’ movies and while a few stand out as memorable, others like the Chipmunks have been nothing but torture.
We both enjoyed Gravity although I did have to ask the women behind the gilded cage at the box office how it is that to take an adult and a child to the movies could cost $40.00. And it would have been $2.00 more if we hadn’t provided our own 3D glasses. She said, ‘Oh, it’s the technology’. So there you have it.
Not a bad way to finish the school holidays.
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