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A simple toy, 2 very different reactions

18th August, 2020

Melbourne is currently in stage 4 lock down which means we have an enforced curfew, grocery shopping is to be done by 1 person per household, masks are mandatory when you’re out and you’re allowed to get out for exercise for 1 hour per day.

So, over the weekend I took my one hour walk with my partner and Livi the dog, it was a beautiful day, the sun was warm and Livi is always excited to get out and sniff and pee on basically anything.

We did my favoured route which clocks in at 60 mins, so I know the streets and houses, the gardens I love and the houses with dogs which Livi likes to say hello to.

One house I love has a gorgeous simple English style front yard and today a woman and 2 children were out on the driveway as we approached. We secured our masks as we approached.

They had a table of goods from what I could see at 15 metres. I do love a cause and wondered what they were raising money for.

As we stepped to the driveway it was a table filled with children’s toys, well used games, some new looking toys and worn soft toys.

The women offered immediately that she was clearing out the kid’s toy boxes as a spring-cleaning job, making space for the new.

Wonderful idea and we took a few more steps continuing our morning walk.

I stopped, Livi would love one of those toys, I voiced my thought to my partner who squinted at me.
I returned to the table and the woman, “I think my dog would love one of these” picking up an orange dinosaur.

My partner looked apologetically at the woman and said to me “I’m sure there will be kids who would appreciate these”. The women looked down, preferring not to say anything.

I looked at the soft toy and I looked at Livi and my partner pushed us on with his eyes.

Inside my head “but Livi is my kid and she’ll love it just as much if not more than another child – why am I walking away from this moment”.

I was annoyed and frustrated with myself for letting my partners small words and the agreement by silence on the woman’s part to make me feel silly for wanting a soft toy for my dog.

I’m reminded of that series of interactions between couples…

And that’s how the argument started.

We figured it out explaining where we both came from, but you know what, I really wish I’d just taken the little soft orange dinosaur.

Livi would have loved cuddling it to sleep at night. She wouldn’t care it was 2nd hand, slightly dirt smudged, in fact that would have only made it all the better.

In fact, once we’re allowed more than 5km from home again and stores open I’m going to take Livi to the local Salvation army and we’re going to pick her out the perfect soft toy.