Monday, 28 January 2008
While we were all at daddy's cousin sister's 21st birthday celebration, Max went missing and the whole house panicked!
It was a big party with lots and lots of relatives and quite a few friend. We have seen the same bunch of friends of our cousins in previous birthday celebrations and festive seasons. In a way everyone was somewhat familiar.
The boys were about the youngest around and somehow they were magnets to lots of the youngsters around, especially some of the girls who kept taking their photos and trying to talk and play with them. After getting the kids and Daddy fed, Mommy and Daddy sat down to just take a break and chatted while keeping an eye on the boys running around. After a while, we felt the need to go home (yes, we are getting old. It was only 10pm and we were tired already).
"Where's Max?" Daddy asked, and suddenly we realised that Micah is the only one running around. We tried not to panic, but it was hard, given the fact that all the doors and the main gate were opened.
If a stranger had walked in I wonder if anyone would have noticed. If Max had wondered out I think a relative would have stopped him and alerted us (although I think not likely, given that it's dark and it's a strange place, and I think Max is not all that brave to wonder out without an adult he feels safe with).
We checked with the grandparents and they did not have him. No Max.
In the kitchen: No Max.
In the garden: No Max.
In the back with their pet rabbit: No Max.
The host family help to do a search.
Our uncle was especially concerned about the fish pond: No Max.
A cousin brother went upstairs then said he is there.
Mommy rushed upstairs and opened the study door (the kids usually play here if they were to be upstairs): NO MAX!
My heart was really pounding by this time. I rushed back downstairs and checked with the cousin brother again.
"He is upstairs. In my sisters' room." He led me there.
Max greeted me with a grin. He was a little sweaty.
"Max. What are you doing up here?"
"Jumping on bed." He giggled and climbed back up on to our cousin's bed and started jumping, just to demonstrate to Mommy. By this time, Micah who had tailed Mommy all over the house, was also jumping on the bed.
Our cousin sister and her friend were trying to show the boys some card tricks but they were too busy jumping on the bed.
It took us another half an hour to get them into the car.
What a night.
Thank you, Lord. We don't take anything for granted, especially the safety of our kids.