Zac turns one

Zac managed to turn one year old today, despite what seems to be a very real interest in doing himself some serious harm. On Saturday he head-butted the floor and so now sports a very becoming bruise on the bridge of his nose, the latest in a long line of scrapes, garks and other imperfections he has accumulated while perfecting his rather extraordinary climbing skills.

He stands, at the moment, but doesn’t walk (apart from the occasional tottering fall, that charitably gets called ‘steps’), but has a huge interest in anything on a table. To get on the table to check it out, he will push one of our kid chairs closer, climb onto that, transfer to a higher chair, then onto the table. Destruction ensues. It’s not pretty.

Zac had several rounds of presents today and appreciated the wrapping and the presents themselves each time, but is a wee bit grumpy on his anniversary – I think he has a cold, probably the same cold Zara, Reid and I have been passing around for the last three or four weeks. I am writing on the plane to Bangkok, and have spent the first two hours trying to get my ears adjusted to the altitude. Can’t wait for the descent.

Zara is off school for two weeks for the Chinese New Year long break – by the time I get back from this trip on Friday I suspect the fire-crackers will have started in earnest. Someone let a few off yesterday afternoon in a small warm-up, and I though a bomb had gone off. Qing Mei, our part-time ayi, has joined the general exodus home for the holiday, which for her means 2 days on a train. Happily Yu Mei is Beijing ren so only gets the same holidays Reid does – 3 days next week.

Last week was also supposed to mark the start of spring – we’re all getting pretty sick of the sub-zero temperatures – but any progress there was dampened by more snow yesterday, and apparently more all week. We’re over it. Bring on the warm.

Reid is busy preparing for Foreign Minister McCully’s visit, which she is looking after – he will up here several times this year, along with the rest of the cabinet it seems at various times. Minister of Trade Tim Grocer was here last week, and he said the Government’s commitment to the Shanghai Expo and China in general could be seen in the number of ministers hurrying to pack their bags for Beijing. You could almost see the diplomats flinch.

And I’m in week 4 of a awfully intense 6 week sprint to the finish line of (this phase of) the Thai project. I haven’t been much fun lately. But the end is in sight.

I may have said that before.