At the beginning of this week I wrote here about the different attitude toward children here in North America and in Thailand.
Apparently people actually read this page (something that always comes as a shock to me), and Catherine has caught some heat from her friends and colleagues along the lines of “hey, we like Oliver…”
Please note that my comments weren’t meant to be a “hey, you don’t love my son enough!” plea. Oliver gets plenty of attention, love, regards, waves, etc. in his regular everyday life here in Charlottetown, from our friends, family, colleagues, and sometimes even from the people that you meet while you’re walkin’ down the street.
So you can stop complaining.
In other cold hearted news, an anonymous friend — let’s call her Libertà — called me today with a story: she was in the bank, at a wicket beside a woman with small child. The woman was struggling to balance dealing with the teller and dealing with the child. By way of trying to be helpful, Libertà tried to engage the child in conversation, which prompted the woman to pick up the child and move him to the other side of her.
Libertà commented on this to the teller after woman and child had left, remarking that in other cultures she might have picked up the child so the mother could bank in peace. The teller recoiled in shock, and said she would never do that lest she be accused of molesting the child.
Which explains a lot about a lot of things.
Another friend emailed to say that our experiences in Thailand echo those that he and his wife experienced in Mexico with their son. This was reinforced tonight for us when we ate at Mexico Lindo for this first time, and found the Mexican chef doting on Oliver in a way we’d only ever seen at the wonderful Lobster Claw out in Brackley Beach.
Libertà, by the way, remains undaunted, and will return to the playing field with as much determination as ever to do right by the kids of town. More power to her.