Mad Men & Volcanoes


The sun is shining. Girls got school places in KL. Hubby really enjoying his trip and very excited about new job. Managing just fine without him.

Life is great!

By Tuesday evening:

Son bites daughter and breaks skin through jeans. Make mistake of telling MIL who calls to speak to her son. She says it's dangerous, possibly poisonous. My Danish isn't great, that's why only possibly poisonous. Definitely dangerous.

Trip to endodondist turned into full-blown root canal. Excruciating pain afterwards and the promise of the same thing all over again in 6 days.

Slightly irritated by Malaysian governments requirement that we all have 6 blank pages and 2 years left on our passports to get visas. That’s three new passports needed – quick! And we need to have all our birth certs and our marriage cert certified by embassies of dispensing countries. That’s five embassies. Yes, I had forgotten about some of the less charming and bureaucratic aspects of living in Asia.

Life is still good as long as I have patience, lots of painkillers, sun, and keep my son and daughter apart.

By Wednesday:

Excruciating pain in tooth has spread to throat. Fever! Have strep for the first time in my life. Have antibiotics at home for tooth use and check that they work on throat. Start them reluctantly. Too sick to go to doctor. Just about manage school run.

May be able to have all documents certified at one embassy so things looking up there. Hubby has bought me the Mad Men 3 DVD.


Getting sicker and sicker. I’m never sick. Except now when my husband is the other side of the world. A volcano erupts. Husband staying on other side of the world. I’m too sick to care about documents or moving house. Or Mad Men. Manage school run but can barely walk. Teacher tells me I look like shit - I'm paraphrasing - and need a baby sitter. I have no choice but to keep going I say pitifully. I have no babysitter.


Sicker still. Can hardly move. Make morning run just about but not without tears - mine. Haven’t been on Facebook for more than 24 hours. Postpone next root canal. Friends take on kids and feed them delivering them for bedtime. They are angels – friends not kids, certainly not toddler terror who knows I’m vulnerable and is bullying me in response. At least he hasn’t bitten me. Can’t talk or walk. Can’t drink or eat. Third day without red wine or coffee – an enforced detox. May hit husband over the head with Mad Men DVD, if he ever comes home with it.


Friends take girls for the day. Am weak with hunger but still can’t eat or drink. Stuck with toddler terror but we have some nice moments amidst the haranguing, bullying and shouting – that’s him not me. I can only whisper and do what I’m told. Thank goodness for drugs. No prospect of hubby getting home before I’m better. Speak to him on Skype. He’s in a friend’s house having dinner. Asks if I can help him find flights home - all this web searching and trying to get through to the 24-hr emergency travel line is playing havoc with his social life. Forget Mad Men DVD; I think I need to kick him somewhere lower, and more painful.


Antibiotics have worked! Can almost swallow again. Manage to mind my own kids all day without killing them. Shout once, just because I finally can. Start catching up on laundry and vacuuming and try to appreciate the delights of drudgery compared to ill-health – even after toy gets stuck in vacuum cleaner so it no longer works. Hubby is feeling awfully guilty in his five star hotel, with his corporate credit card and several friends who are wining and dining him. He skypes from another friend’s house but has to sign off because they’re going to some social event. It’s tough being the one who’s stranded. Not! He is trying to fly to Madrid next Thursday. It’s better than nothing.


Return to good health continues although now that I finally look in the mirror, I see how crap I look and that my roots seem to have grown two inches in a week. Ah well, at least I can drink coffee and red wine again, although for some strange reason don't want to. I'm detoxed! Toddler terror has a streaming nose so needs to stay home and make even more waffles from Play Doh, wipe snot on every available surface and accompany me on a much needed trip to the supermarket. I may never finish my novel. Hubby has booked flight from KL to Amsterdam tonight. This may mean KLM is going to start flying passengers in Europe again as test flights have shown no sign of damage. I’ll believe it when I see him and that darn DVD. The sun is still shining. Life is still great. If I could only get toddler terror to nap - and let me do the same...


Simply-Mel said...


I may never complain about anything again. Truly. I am ridiculously impressed that you still have your sense of humour intact!!

Dot said...

It's miserable being ill when looking after small children, and being on your own as well...poor you. The only tiny good point to this is that you have accumulated a pretty hefty store of martyrdom points which you can deploy when you need to blackmail your family in the future.

Much sympathy.

Irish Mammy said...

So sorry for your truly shitty week, root canals should be compulsory for banking officials who squander gazillions of taxpayers money, maybe instead of prison sentences trainee doctors with shaky hands can pratice root canals blindfolded? It could be like the stonings of days of old except it would be played out on video for You Tube as a deterrant for social deviants and social deviant wanabees (me for minister for defence yah) but the only good thing about root canals is that they are good for your figure (temporarily). Good luck with the move xx

Mary @ DisneyPrincessRecovery said...

Hi, I'm a first time commenter, found your blog through a friend. I was journeying through your writings, and when I went off to read the news, saw this:

"Norway headed the list of developed countries at the top of the list of best places to be a mother, followed by Australia, Iceland, Sweden, Denmark, New Zealand, Finland, the Netherlands, Belgium and Germany."

Here's the article if you are you want to read:


I'd be interested your thoughts!


Michele said...

OMG. This is such a great post, Johanna. I felt like I was right there with you through your misery, except you made it kind of funny for me, which was way better than how it was for you, I know. LOL about your toddler sensing your weakness. Hopefully he learned about "karma" when you recovered. :-)

Glad you're better. I dig Mad Men, too, except I constantly want to smack Mrs. Draper in the back of the head. (I'm only into Season 2, so maybe she gets less annoying?)

OSLO said...

A very belated than you for all your comments. Of course my husband made it back, toddler terror has returned to normal levels of mischief and the throat and tooth have recovered. I'm afraid though it wasn't all a happy ending. My engineer husband, who is the most detail-oriented person I know, turned up, or at least he didn't but his luggage turned up a day later, with the much-vaunted Mad Men DVD. Except it was Series 2, which we already have and have watched. 'The man told me it was Series 3,' he says in defense, despite the fact that it states very clearly in large lettering on the cover that it was Series 2. So I've ordered it on amazon Honestly, if you want a job done - or indeed want a present - sort it out yourself :)
Mary - sorry I haven't had a chance to reply to your comment but I did see the results of the survey you referred to and completely understood why Norway would come out tops for mothers. It's a shame we're leaving...