Friday, 2 September 2011

And the world just carried on

I was in bed last night when everyone else was watching news of the Libyan revolution on tv. I saw some tweets about it and considered going downstairs to watch the news but, well, I was in bed. Bad enough that a mere sniffle from the baby will have me out of bed in seconds, I don't need to get up for Gaddafi as well. 

Turns out that the world keeps, well, being a world, even when you opt out for a bit. I haven't really watched the news since the baby was born except to see how close to my house the riots were creeping last month. Not because, as many parents report, it's too sad, but because the only world I am interested in right now is governed not by coups and revolutions but by naps and purée and poo - poonamis, poocanos and poonatural disasters. Oh I might be too tired to watch the news but the fun that can be had with poo puns is endless. 

The first of the revolutions, the one in Tunisia, started as I struggled to nurse my two day old baby from my hospital bed. If you had asked me then what was going on in the world I could have told you that it was snowing in London, because my bed was by the window and I remember taking her from my breast to show the baby the snow. "You won't realise it now," I told her, "but snow in the south of England, it's a rare excitement. In years to come you will remember snow days off school, snowmen in our garden, snowball fights with kids on the street, perhaps even a white Christmas, as occasional magical days." She probably gave me the bemused look, my two day old baby, that she gives me now when I explain on our walks through the park that acorns come from oak trees and that there are no known cases of a conker fight 'having an eye out' and the rest of my cod knowledge of trees and nature. 

Did I look at the newspaper left by my bed and read about the revolution and say to my daughter that the world was changing, that her first year would probably go down in history as a year that changed the course of civilisation, that events in Tunisia would lead to events in Egypt and events in Libya and change across the Middle East? No, I told her about the snow and barely noticed events in the wider world.

And that has been the last eight months. My immediate world has become fascinating and the world at large seems of little relevance. It's as if having a child has turned me into a child, and only the immediate matters. I see the weather forecast for today is sunny. I do hope so. 

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