...or really....the lack of one.
No...nothing happened to Koji, but...he has been gone for a bit and...well...let me explain.
Koji is in his last year of daycare here. Really, he is a kindergartner, but...as kindergarten is not a part of the public school system (it's all pretty much private), he is an unofficial kindergartner. Many of the things they do at daycare, run parallel to the private kindergartens....when they get into 1st grade, you can't really tell who came from what kind of 'school'.
Every age group at the daycare has a name....the baby group is the Tampopo gumi ("dandelion group"), then the something-gumi (sorry...forgot!!)...on up to the last group, the top group, the highest group, aptly named, Fuji-gumi (as in Mt. Fuji, the highest mountain in Japan at 3,776 meters....which is exactly how many grams Koji weighed when he was born!! uh-huh!! Kid you not!!)
Anyway...because this is their last year, the Fuji-gumi kids do a lot of fun stuff. In the fall, they take ice skating lessons for about 8 weeks....which Issei still talks about!!! They go on special mountain hikes, swimming days...but the best and most fun thing they do is....go camping....with only teachers....for 2 nights!!!!!
About 3 weeks ago, we had to get his backpack ready and take in in for the teachers to check to make sure that we had packed absolutely everything that was on the very long and extensive list. Inside the very large backpack was: 5 different plastic shopping bags, each with Koji's name and a number (each bag had a specific set of items...#1: 1 pair of shorts, 1 short-sleeved t-shirt, 1 pair unders; #2: 1 pair of shorts, 2 long sleeved-button down shirt, 1 pair unders, 1 short-sleeved t-shirt....and so on!!). There was also a bag for "extras" such as toothbrush, swimsuit, bug repellent, 2 cups of rice, a cleaning rag, and shoes to wear in the river.
After the teachers checked the bag...it came back home...and sat....in the entrance way of our house. It was like a scab that gets picked just because it's there....."Can I look inside?" "Is the camp today?" "Is the camp tomorrow?" "Can I see what's in there...I think I forgot." I finally
after 3 days put the bag in a closet where he couldn't see it and be tempted by it.
His backpack was so big....I hope they didn't have to hike very far to the cabins!!!
Koji and his teacher doing a last check and putting a special name tag on his bag.The energy level in that room was almost unbearable!!! One of the other mothers and I were talking and we thought that, as adults, we couldn't think of anything short of winning the lottery that would have us that excited!!!!
Right before I left him, I told him to "not cry for mommy"....to which, and I kid you not on this, the little turd rolled his eyes at me!!! And then he said to me "Mommy, too."
And no...I didn't roll my eyes back to him....I just said that I would try to be strong and not cry. He smiled at that....and not one of those "ah, my Mommy loves me" smiles....no, it was one of those "Yeah, you're gonna miss me" kind of smiles!!!
Funny thing about that....last night and tonight....strangely quiet here at the Kuroiwa House. No fighting...no bickering...no messes in the living room...it's been really, very....nice. Though Issei said that he didn't sleep too well last night, even he mentioned how quiet it was without Koji.
Tomorrow (Saturday) at around 2:00 they come back...after hiking, campfires, playing in the river, looking for bugs, doing fireworks and all the other stuff that goes with camping, I'm sure he'll have lots to tell us.
And...sadly....our short-lived quiet time....will be over.
~~sigh~~It has been great while it lasted!!!
And really....a flamingo suit and a martini...looks kind of fun to me!!!