Saturday, May 9, 2009

The darndest things

I was standing at the milk and sugar counter on Ninth Street, putting a lid on my iced Americano, when a neatly dressed toddler walked in, came up to me and said: "Hi!".

"Hi!" I said and smiled back at him.

Then he walked over to the group of people standing by the register and uttered a number of hi's correlative to the number of people there. "Hi!...Hi!...Hi!...Hi!...Hi", each one uttered equally enthusiastic.

I was in a good mood to begin with, but jeez, he just made my day, and judging from the expression on people's faces, he made theirs too.

Sometimes I think I'm not cut out for having kids, for the simple reason that it would imply a life full of routines, something I don't handle very well. Knowing that I have to get up at a certain hour, or be there at a certain time - it just makes me feel ill at ease, plain and simple.

It's also the reason why I cannot join a gym class or a knitting club. Believe me, I've tried it, paid the fee and all, showed up for the first lesson, and then I bail.

It's kind of paradoxical, because evidently my life is already full of routines: I get up (voluntarily) at a relatively fixed hour in the morning, I chat with my dad on Skype, I go for coffee, come home and check my favorite blogs, try to work and then procrastinate for the next ten hours or so, go for a run, have dinner, etc. Routines, routines, routines.

But I think the simple fact that I could change all this without it having an effect on anyone but myself, somehow soothes me. No, even better, it makes me truly happy.

It reminds of this scene from When Harry met Sally, when the two of them are reflecting on their past relationships:

And it makes me realize that for me, myself, it doesn't really matter if I ever do the things that living a life off-schedule could potentially entail. What really matters is the thought that in the unlikely event that someone invites me to come start up an Orphanage in Calcutta, then I can just say "Sure thing!" and not have to decline the offer because of a Yoga class.

But all this aside, I think kids are the most amusing little beings, and I guess, I will just have to keep my fingers crossed that the kids I will eventually have will be miniature versions of myself: Little peculiar things that prefer to be home-schooled so they don't have to get up early in the morning and leave their house, and who are inclined to substituting weekly gym classes and play-dates with all things spontaneous.

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