AKA - The Milaccino
It’s Monday. I’m sitting at home being tormented by a baby.
“Please Mila. Please.” I whimper.
But it’s no use. The mini ice maiden ignores my suffering. It wasn’t meant to be like this.
Let’s briefly go back in time, to two months ago. It’s about nine o’clock at night. We’re in Budapest. Mila is asleep, Zsuzsa is on the living room floor in an extraordinarily uncomfortable looking position that she insists is ‘yoga’. I’ve just opened an email from the nursery in London that have agreed to take our little spawn. My eyes widen in horror.
From across the room, upside down, via a gap in between her legs, Zsuzsa spots my horror.
“What honey!? What!?” she says.
“Have you seen the sodding prices at this nursery!?” I say, changing the word that I really said to ‘sodding’ as my Grandma reads this.
Zsuzsa unfolds herself and wanders over to take a look.
“No sodding way!” she says, also remembering that my Grandma reads this. “Is that the price for one month?”
I nod sadly.
“You could buy a kidney on the black market for that price.” I say.
“What should we do?” says Zsuzsa, a concerned expression upon her Hungarian face.
I have an idea.
“I know. What if we only put her in to the nursery three days a week, and I look after her whilst working from home on the other two days?”
“Honey. That’ll be impossible!”
“Nonsense!” I say with a dismissive flick of my hand.
Now let’s go back to the present time and me, sitting at home, smothered in baby. There are toys where a floor used to be, I’m covered in banana and Mila has decided to take up tap-dancing on my laptop. Defeated, I pick Mila up and close my laptop.
Twenty minutes later and we are in Dulwich Park. All around me are well dressed ladies and pristine, well groomed children called Oscar. I am in the heartland of ‘The Yummy Mummy’.
We enter a playground, Mila giggles and runs to the roundabout. I follow her, lift her up and place her on the roundabout. She beams as the roundabout begins to slowly turn. There are three other young girls on the roundabout and I smile politely at their mothers.
“Do you want to get off Emily?”
“It’s okay Emily.”
“Do you want to go on the swings next Emily?”
It takes me a minute or two to compute, but once I’ve computed, I begin to feel a little freaked out, because every single girl on this roundabout apart from Mila is called Emily.
This is obviously some form of witchcraft.
I decide to escape the spinning wheel of Emily and take my cub to the slide. Whilst at the slide I overhear a conversation between another two young mothers.
“Jethro tried his first ramen the other day” says mother one.
“Did he like it?” asks mother two.
“To be honest, I think he prefers the yaki udon.”
“Really? That’s Sven’s favourite too! Salmon right?”
I glance at their two children playing near Mila. Sven and Jethro are both about two.
We leave the playground and head home via a cafe. I order a coffee, a babyccino and two croissants. I sit Mila on my knee and we both tuck in to our croissants.
“Would you like to try a ramen?” I ask Mila.
“Dada!” replies Mila.
“Its just I don’t want you to feel left out if all the other babies at the nursery are chatting about ramen. Maybe we’ll stop off at Wagamama’s or somewhere on Friday.”
“Dada!” replies Mila, mouth covered in babyccino foam.
I look around the cafe. Young mums and babies sipping babyccino’s and croissants galore. Then it hits me.
“Oh my God! Mila! I’m a Dulwich yummy mummy!”
“How did this happen? One minute I’m a kid attending a South Wales comprehensive school. The next minute I’m debating taking my baby daughter for a ramen while she sips her babyccino in Dulwich village!”
We walk home. On the way home I see a man pushing a buggy and I’m relieved. A fellow male of the species! Maybe I should say “Hi”? Maybe we’ll become friends, chat about football and down dirty pints while our babies sleep! I’m now almost level with him. I’m about to say something when I peer in to his buggy.
Two sausage dogs.
A man pushing two sausage dogs in a buggy through Dulwich Village.
I decide that I have enough friends and we walk on in silence.