Some women get clutzier when they're pregnant. I guess I'm naturally clutzy enough that I can't get any worse. I never tripped or fell when I was pregnant with Liam. I blame Liam completely for the fact that I've now fallen twice, in public, in the past month.
The first time, I was walking with Liam on a rainy, dismal day. I remember that it was the day of my friend Aubrey's birthday party and we were returning from the stationary shop where I'd gotten a card and ribbon for her gift. We'd also picked up Liam's favorite little fish-shaped, custard-filled (shuga-cream in Konglish) breads. Liam was tired, which he proved after we got home by throwing a stupid fit (over the fish bread) and then falling asleep on my lap. So, on the way home, he wanted me to carry him, something I've been doing less and less lately. Because of the toddler perched on my protruding belly, I couldn't see the curb very well, came down on my ankle wrong, and fell, dropping my child and the bag with the fish bread.
Why is this worth blogging about? Because there was an older woman walking by who saw the whole thing, saw that I was obviously pregnant, saw that I dropped my child who was then crying, and did NOTHING. She was not feeble-old or helpless-old, just grandmotherly. She didn't even ask if I was okay. She just stared at me for a moment and then kept walking, before I was even collected and off the ground.
Yes, I added this to my "list of slights," an imaginary list that I invented once in conversation with my friend Jen. I'm taking back what I previously said about old people in Korea being extremely courteous. Apparently that only applies when others are around to see them being nice to the foreigners.
This past week, I was walking down the sloped sidewalk in front of my apartment with Liam. He was holding my hand and started running, then fell down. He somehow took me down with him. So there we were, sprawled on the sidewalk, checking out our scrapes, and I looked up. A girl was standing at the end of the sidewalk just staring at us. In Korean, I said to her, "What? What are you looking at? Go!" Then in English, "What are you looking at? Foreigners fall down, too." She looked surprised and walked away. (She might have been surprised because I yelled at her. She might have been surprised because I spoke Korean. Or she might have been surprised because I said, "Mul ba?" which is the way gangsters in Korean movies ask "What are you looking at?")
I know that I'm a cranky pregnant woman. I understand that's just the way Koreans are in general, and specifically around foreigners who don't really fit into the social strata. That doesn't stop me from getting very, very, very irritated. So obviously, I just need to stop falling down. That will solve the problem. (And I still say it's all Liam's fault.)
Learning Something New
6 months ago