There are many things that I expected would to happen to me when I became a mom, like having to deal with tantrums in public, waking up at all hours of the night or even changing my clothes five times a day because of those little dirty hands that like to touch everything.
I expected these things, because I try and anticipate what could possibly happen in order to prevent any fiascos (or at least to try and decrease the drama that comes with it).
But there are moments in life when all the preparation and planning does not come even close to being enough. Some things really do just come our way when we least expect them.
That’s what happened to me the day a total stranger almost had a peek at my breast.
To set the stage, this incident didn’t happen because I was going topless, or because the man happened to pass by the woman’s changing room. Nope. The day that stranger almost had a peek at my breast, I was fully dressed, and seated in a taxi in the busy jam-packed streets of Bangkok.
Now, let’s go back a few days before the incident. I was at home with my two year-old. We were having a chat, the way you do with a toddler, which means that she was doing all the talking and I was simply listening and smiling. At one point in our conversation, she tapped my chest and, listening to the sound of her hand touching my skin, said “tummy.”
That’s when I noticed that she misunderstood the meaning of the word “tummy”, assuming that it referred to the sound rather than the actual tummy. So, with the intention of teaching her the proper word, I pointed at my tummy and explained that it was this part of my body, and that the area that she tapped on earlier was called “chest.”
She loved this new knowledge and kept practicing over and over again repeating the words “tummy” and “chest,” until she made sure to memorize them.
That conversation took about two minutes, and just like any other conversation with my daughter, we moved on to something else and I completely forget about it.
Until that day in the taxi…
Now to provide some context, we moved to Bangkok a few months ago (where they drive on the left), and traffic is simply brutal. No joke, it takes me about 1.5 hours to drive to my daughter’s nursery and back home. Remember, I’m having to make this trip twice a day. My husband and I agreed that I’d be doing this commute by taxi, which is very cheap in Thailand. This means that my daughter gets to sit on my lap for long stretches, and I absolutely love it. Some days, she sleeps on me and it feels like heaven, and other days we are able to have some great chats.
So on that afternoon, we happened to be chatting about some stuff (not sure what, because as usual, I was just smiling and nodding), and she remembered the vocabulary lesson that we discussed a week earlier. She got so excited about it that she literally pulled my shirt down, taking with it my bra, and exposing a large part of my breast to the world – in a taxi, with a complete stranger driving a car in the middle of Bangkok traffic, with other drivers around us.
She was screaming out loud “sesssssst, sessssssst, sessssst!”
The more I was trying to pull up my shirt and bra, the more she was pulling them down and screaming louder, triumphant, like she found some hidden treasure.
She was looking at me with pride, searching for some recognition for remembering the word all by herself but I was too focused on the taxi driver. Obviously, I didn’t want him to expect that this mom-daughter duo was going to offer him a little show that would be something out of his wildest dreams.
I wanted to make sure that he was focusing on his driving so we get home safe.
I also wanted to make sure that the other drivers around us didn’t get a peek.
So, it took me a while to notice that she just needed some recognition for remembering the word, to get her to stop pulling my shirt and bra down. But then as soon as I did, I clapped and acknowledged that what she was tapping on was indeed a “sesssssst” so we were able to eventually put an end to the spectacle, and move on to something else.
Fortunately, we got home safe and sound (and fully dressed).
My breast remained hidden where it should be and the taxi driver, well… Let’s just say that he was too focused on his driving (I’ll keep this version of the story to myself).
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