Wednesday, December 10, 2008

The Three Neighbour Babies

It never fails to amaze me how little children can be content with. I recall being a child and watching television and wanting everything I saw. Obviously there is no television here, but I will take into special notice our three neighbour children.

Our neighbourhood seems FULL of children, and while about 7 of them walk into our yard from the same general direction on the same path and seem to know one another very well, I’m not actually sure which of these children belong to the woman who also lives in that direction.

Three I’m sure are hers, though they all look quite different from one another and all seem to be under the age of 4. They wander into our yard in various states of undress and stick their tongues out at us and smile when we return the gesture.

We don’t know their names at all, so we call them Big Bellybutton Baby, Big Smile Baby, and Big P Baby.

They are generally dressed in rags and are completely unattended. Their pants are more holes than pants, and Big Bellybutton Baby’s huge bellybutton protrudes extremely from her ratty, tattered and filthy Winnie the Pooh adult t-shirt, which she wears as a dress.

But none of these children seem unhappy in the least. In fact, they seem EXTREMELY happy with the littlest of things -- they paraded around the yard two nights ago banging a dirty white bucket and laughing.

Big Smile Baby’s favorite toy is a doll torso -- literally, a plastic white doll baby with no arms, legs or head. But he loves it!

As cute and as endearing as these children are, their utter unattendedness -- whether in regular mothering or proximity of mother or the logical next step -- medical care -- still keeps us from letting them anywhere near the chimps.

We watch them “cutely” stick their heads into the well, “adorably” poop in the front yard and “lovably” scratch their heads with knives they find in and around the kitchen area. I’m amazed that the worst condition they seem to have acquired is the one with the huge bellybutton (and no, it is not just an overlong umbilical cord).

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