Telephone Calls

Being a full-time working mother, one of the few joys at work is to receive a telephone call from Matthew. All thanks to PoPo, who helps to choreograph this every time.

When Matthew started “calling” me at the beginning of last year, all I could hear was my own voice carrying out a monologue, and probably sounding crazed to my colleague.

Now, with Matthew at 20 months old, I probably still sound insane to my colleague, but what reverberates from the other side of the receiver is no longer silence. 

Disclaimer: Matthew is not, and will not be brought up to be a purist in language. His vocabulary comes from a variety of languages, mainly English and Mandarin, but also includes Cantonese, Hokkien, and miscellaneous sounds.

Yesterday’s conversation. PoPo spoke first before passing the receiver to Matthew.

Me: Hello Matthew, it’s Mummy.

Matt: BaBa? (at this point, PoPo’s voice could be heard correcting him) Har-o MaMa.

Me: Have you been a good boy today?

Matt: Good boy. BaBa where?

Me: BaBa at work. You miss BaBa, yes?

Matt: Yea

PoPo’s voice could be heard yet again, giving instructions.

Matt: 我, 有, 画, 画 (I did drawing)

Me: Oh? 你有 画 画? (You did a drawing?) Fun?

Matt: Fun

Me: 在 school 画, 还是在家 画? (You did the drawing in school, or at home?)

Matt: 在家 画 (did the drawing at home)

Me, with widened eyes and nearly speechless: Wow! Continue to be a good boy, and listen to PoPo ok? You must also listen to YiYi, GongGong…

PoPo: Hello girl, what did you say to Matthew? How come he ran away so quickly?

Oh well, I guess who wouldn’t run once the mother starts to nag…  


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