I have not been feeling well. I really wanted to tell you earlier about all the important things that happened the last few weeks. That we have a new King. That Linde turned four and started primary school. That we, the Dutch expat community in Singapore, celebrated for days, clad in orange, showing the locals just how crazy we can be. That we watched the coronation in a champagne bar downtown, that served free hutspot (potato and carrot stew) as a barsnack. That the kids emptied their piggy bank to raid the kids free market at the Hollandse Club. That our new tv communicates with the computer, and showed the coronation again, on Sunday morning, on the big screen, and together with the kids we again admired beautiful Queen Maxima, in royal blue, with the three little princesses. Real princesses, with blond tresses, but miles away from the plastic Disney variety, with plump cheeks, yawns, and so much more real and perfect in all their imperfections.
So much festivity yet I, since I was not feeling well, could not really join in, not as much as I would have liked. Off course, feeling off is never an excuse for the mother of a little girl that turns four and needs a party. Nor for that of a five year old who has been promised that his mama will help out at the school with the old fashioned Dutch games. Nor the two year old who wants it all.
So I organised the party, where the children made their own crowns, decorated cupcakes, dressed up as little princes and princesses, played, played and played, sang Happy Birthday in two languages, and ate home baked strawberry cake. We went to shop for Linde’s present, her new bicycle without stabilisers, and there were tears because, mean, mean mummy did not want to buy the Disney princess one. It was just one princess too far.
At the new school there was a party too, where queen Linde sat in the circle on her blue throne, demure and a little shy, the red paper crown with the big cardboard 4 perched on her blonde hair. Treats were handed round, the same popcorn bags we made for the farewell party at the preschool the week before, and no, I was not allowed to pick her up. Her majesty would take the bus home. When asked how it was, this second day at school, she answered it was fun. Pressed for details she shouted, I told you it was fun, and ran up the stairs to fetch her new princess dress.
When I saw my consultant, at the private Singaporean hospital that looks more like an expensive hotel, and told him the recovery after my surgery took so much longer than expected, he was not surprised. Rest, he recommended. So now I am resting, that is, lying on my bed resting all of my body but the tips of my fingers tapping away. The parties are over. The princess is back at school. The queen will take her beauty sleep now.