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Training Ground

When Vernon, Boon Ping, <a href="http://www.tribolum.com/visuals/archives/2004/07/21/2942.php">Jonathan</a> and baby Benjamin moved to the States last month, they left us two tanks of freshwater fish and a bag of maternity clothes. Faith was already pregnant then, but we didn't know.
It began a routine of Saturday fish-tank cleaning and many trips to the pet shop to buy aquatic plants and knick-knacks to decorate the tank. It was a lesson in commitment; the very first step.
It was Teachers' Day two days ago and Faith was the recipient of a very generous student who gave her a small hamster. It came in a small disposable cup layered with sawdust.
We spent $120 yesterday buying the most spiffy cage, food, toys, bath powder and sawdust. We swelled (ok I swelled) with pride that we were giving Squeaky (we named her after she squeaked) the best.
I stayed up till 2am trying to show Squeaky the ins-and-outs of her new apartment. It features a Penthouse powder bathroom and neon green wheel that actually rotated round on the horizontal plane as well as the vertical. I just had to give Squeaky directions to the amenities.I learnt a few things about parenting last night.
<ul><li>don't keep changing the environment; it makes it hard for the critter to get used to her space</li><li>if you're going to stick your hand in and help her, just do it once, because she's going to expect it to work that way if you keep on giving help</li><li>you need to learn when to let go and go to bed; she'll take care of herself</li></ul>
Although I initially felt burdened with the menagerie our house had become, I'm thankful for the training.

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