Rules for Outside and Rules for Inside

November 22, 2014

The title is not appropriate. As of now, I didn’t discover any rules that would govern Robert’s overnight stay outside the house. During our last trip, as well as during our previous trips, Robert accepted all kinds of sleeping arrangements. Of course, he preferred hotels with swimming pools, but didn’t complain about hotels without them.  During our trip to France and Poland, we stayed in different hotels, a cottage, a bed and breakfast, and with a family. If Robert found any of them more or less comfortable than the others, he didn’t share that observation with any of us. He was a relatively gracious guest in any place he entered.

Sadly, Robert was not a very gracious host, when his aunt and uncle came for a two day long visit.   Don’t get me wrong. He loves his aunt and uncle. When he heard that they were coming, he worked diligently with me on cleaning the house.  The house, after our trip to Europe, was in a rather bad shape. Robert vacuumed, brushed toilets, washed sinks, carried garbage out, and kept doing laundry of all the needed bedding.  He accepted, ahead of time, the fact that he needed to give the guests his spare comforter and that I would do the same.  However, he didn’t assent to giving them a spare queen sheet set as he considered it belonging to my bed.  He offered other sheets: blue, white, and purple  Unfortunately, they were all twin sizes Reluctantly, he acquiesced, but the pain of doing something that went against HIS unspoken rules of the house, bothered him for all two days and thus he bothered us also.

I consider it a great achievement on his part, that he waited until our guests’ day of departure to remove the sheets, wash them, fold the sofa, and enjoy the return of the previous order.

The other issue arose, when Robert wanted to go to bed.  Our rather pleasant  routine came to bite us when the circumstances changed. Every night, when Robert is ready for a bed, he expects us, his parents, to be in our bed too.  His father can keep working on his laptop.  I can watch Netflix on my IPAD. But we have to stay in bed.  The matter of fact, Robert brings me  IPAD and places a glass of water on my nightstand.  Only when everything is ready for his parents to take a rest, Robert goes to his bedroom.

Well, on Thursday evening, Robert wanted to go to bed earlier than usual.  Probably, because he was tired.  That meant that his parents should go to bed too instead of entertaining themselves and their guests. Moreover, my other friends arrived, as they usually do, around 8 PM.  It never was the problem in the past, but this time Robert really wanted to go to bed early.  As we were drinking tea, wine, and eating a pie, Robert kept coming over to remind me, “Mama bathtub, mama bathtub.” Which meant, “Take a shower and go to your bed.” Over and over. He was also looking for any empty cup, goblet, or saucer to pick it up and carry it to the kitchen sink. Robert deduced that if there were no dishes, there would not be any temptation to eat or drink more.  So some guest would leave and some would go to sleep.  We responded to Robert’s removing empty dishes by keeping always something on the plates and something in the cups or goblets.  I also asked Robert to do small jobs around the house – empty a dishwasher, fold the last basket of laundry hoping that this way, I can gain a few minutes without hearing, “Mama bathtub, mama bathtub.”  Robert complied but soon was back with  more, “Mama bathtub, mama bathtub.”  To make his request clearer, he brought my night-gown.  I gave up.  Since I noticed that the guests were having very nice time talking, and knowing that Robert’s aunt could easily replace me in the role of the hostess, I withdrew to my bedroom.  Robert brought me a glass of water and IPAD and went to his bedroom.

Robert’s dad, by the way, was already asleep with his laptop still on.



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1 Comment

  1. Jean

     /  November 26, 2014

    Glad you could “adapt” the bedtime pattern to accomodate Robert and guests. 🙂


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