“Where’s my coffee?” I muttered for the fifth or sixth time. The urgency in my voice was increasing, as was the sinking feeling in my gut. “Where’s my bloody coffee?!”
I’d just taken three of my kids to the shops to pick up a few essentials, the most important of which was coffee pods and milk. Coffee because it is quintessential in helping me kick start my brain for work, and milk because it stops the baby screaming at me. And now here I was home again and there was nothing caffeine related on the bench.
For the third time I checked the pantry, the fridge, the freezer and the car. I even looked in the bin where I’d thrown a couple of torn plastic bags.
Eventually, I gave in and called the supermarket. While I paid for the items, Master8 had packed the bags in the trolley. It was conceivable he’d left one on the checkout and I’d missed it as well.
“Would there be other things in the bag besides coffee?” the girl wanted to know.
“Um….,” I said decisively. I started looking in pantry, fridge and freezer again for stuff which wasn’t there. “I don’t know. Maybe.” I hadn’t particularly worried about any other stuff because it’s not like my body would crumple in a heap if I missed out on a stupid croissant. “Croissants! I think I’m missing croissants.”
“And maybe chocolate cookies?” she prompted.
“I’ll be down there in a couple of minutes,” I told her gratefully.
“That’s about all you’ve got,” she said. It was nearly nine o’clock.
Fortunately, through some manic sticking exactly to the speed limits, I managed to beat the closing of the centre by a nearly an entire minute. The security guard had inserted his key to lock the automatic doors for the night. Thirty seconds later and he would have witnessed a grown man throwing a shopping centre tantrum.
“You better go chat with your son,” Tracey said to me when I arrived home. “He’s worried you’re upset with him.”
I walked in and sat on Master8’s bed, where he was looking up at me with his sad face.
“I’m really sorry, Dad, but I double checked. I even triple checked.” There was a short pause for thought. “Then I quadruple checked.” Longer pause. Slight frown. “What do you call it when you check five times.”
Now I was the one pausing.
“Quintuple,” I told him, feeling smarts.
“Yeah, well I quintuple checked. In fact, I….Dad?”
“What?” he asked me, grinning.
“Sextupled.” Maybe the word was first uttered by a New Zealander? Keep the conversation moving, Bruce. “And seven times is septuple, and eight is octuple.”
“Well, I definitely octuple checked,” said Master8, looking much less worried. “Definitely.”
Which I was super pleased about because I couldn’t for the life of me recall what the word was for checking nine times. Maybe after I’ve had a coffee in the morning.
When not checking his stats every two minutes Bruce Devereaux hangs out at his ‘BIG FAMILY little income’ Facebook Page.
’raising a family on little more than laughs’