My friend Sveta, the Little Red Headed Monster's mother, asked me to help her. She wanted me to drive to the airport together with her to meet her husband, who was coming back from Russia. Me being who I am, I successfully forgot all about it. When she called yesterday, I thought that she wanted to come over in the evening. When I realized my mistake, the poor lady, probably, already went through all kinds of panic, thinking how to find someone instead of me on such a short notice.
Anyway, I assured her that I could help. She, actually, wanted me to come to her house and babysit the Monster and her brother instead. I knew, it would be considerably more work than just sitting in the car and keeping company, but - what the heck, right? She is a nice lady, and it's good to go outside one's comfort zone sometimes.
When I drove up to Sveta's house, she met me outside. She made a small shelter for the street cats that live in her yard. A few cute, fuzzy fur balls were running around, playing. The Little Red Headed Monster, Katya, showed up just then, in pink crocs, pink tutu with a satin bow and a shirt that didn't cover her fat little belly. She was dragging along one of the kittens, who was unsuccessfully trying to escape her grasp. When she saw me, she dropped the kitten and ran to give me a hug. Sufficiently melted and gooey, I proceeded into the house, where I was met by Heyong - Heyosha - the Monster's brother. He was no less happy to see me.
From that moment on, the kids' poor mother had to hear every few minutes: "Aren't you going yet, mom?" I felt really bad, but she just smiled!
I told the kids that I brought Bambi II with me. They asked: "What's Bambi?" I realized that they, probably, didn't see the original Bambi. By mom's look I understood that it wasn't a simple gap in the Disney education. Maybe, the parents didn't want the children to see the scene of Bambi's mother being killed. Even as I told Katya and Heyosha about what happened in the first Bambi, they had to ask me a few times: "What do you mean, the mother was shot?!"
Feeling like I just shot the doe, I changed the subject of a conversation. While we were setting up the DVD machine and settling down to watch the movie, Sveta slipped away.
Even though there is just one year gap between Katya and Heyosha, they are at very different levels of development. He watched the movie intently, not stirring or getting distracted. She had to stand leaning on me, turning and adjusting her position every few seconds. I managed to convince her to sit on the couch next to me, but then she declared that the movie was too long. "Is this the end?" - she asked hopefully just a little bit into the movie. She began to climb on top of the furniture and drop things.
I saw that some additional measures must be taken to ensure that the house will be still standing by the time of the parents' return. "Let's look, what's in that purse of mine!" - I said.
It's been a while since I checked, what's in my purse. No matter: Katya did a much more thorough job of it! She was not satisfied with some old plastic cards that I tried to give her. She liked much better my barrette, that went into her hair, and when she came upon my lipstick, her eyes really lit up. I remembered too late about the way kids treat lipsticks. About all those tubes of it with crashed and depleted contents that littered my own mom's drawers. As I prosterred my trembling hands to Katya, she, with a sadistic pleasure in her eyes, smudged my treasured Frosted Rose around her lips and forehead and...Oh, where didn't she put it?! Finally, I threatened her that I didn't like her not listening to me and was going to leave if she didn't immediately turned in the, sad now, lipstick. She did.
Her brother also got involved in the lipstick exploration. I suddenly saw him trying to unscrew another tube! Not thinking that I would be able to explain to his parents why their son was pink and frosted all over, I hurriedly assured him that it was "just for girls!" I detected real jealousy in his eyes at that!
When the movie ended, the real action began. Both kids were now climbing on top of every piece of furniture in the room. Everywhere they went, things began to drop. I told them to find another movie, but first pick up everything from the floor. I was feverishly looking at the clock, trying to estimate, when the parents will come back. Children already began to miss mom and dad and started to ask, when they will be back. Just as I decided that it would be another hour and a half, they walked through the door!
I was forgotten faster than the last winter's snow! "Papa, papa, papa! You are back!" - the kids yelled. I left the house as soon as I could, not willing to intrude on the family's joy. It was as it should've been!