“Quick,” I said. “We don’t have long. The sugar rush from dessert is about to kick in.”
Everyone laughed but I wasn’t trying to be funny. I’d learned to dread sugar. American food seemed to be laden with it, even the healthy stuff. Like “raisin bran” — each raisin came in a crystallized winter coat of silvery refined sugar. One moment the kids would be okay — I could get them sitting quietly in the rec hall, painting or whatever. Then they’d have a snack and suddenly it was like being in a Roy Lichtenstein painting — all KABAAM and WALLOP, as they ricocheted off the walls, running about and fighting with each other.
“You really are, categorically, the most American guy in the universe,” I said. “Next you’ll be telling me you were Prom King. And you drive a red pick-up truck.”
Don’t be sick on the children… Don’t be sick on the children…
Their little heads bobbed beneath me in the queue to get on the aeroplane. My stomach lurched again and I grabbed it. If I clutched at my guts hard enough, hopefully they’d not empty themselves over the excitable heads of the kids in front.
I couldn’t be certain, but vomming over innocent kiddlywinks could possible jeopardize my acceptance onto a long-haul flight.
Why had I done that last shot last night? Why, please? Why? WHY!?