One of the things I never expected as a father – among thousands of things that came as a surprise with parenthood – were the phases of growing up. Children have different phases about all sorts of things – about foods they like or don`t like, about their behaviour, about the process of learning and about the things that interest them. Mojca is in a phase of fishes and fishing.

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Fishing has strong roots in my family. My father was a passionate fisherman. He used to take me and my brother fishing for whole days. I almost died of boredom a couple of times (fishing is about siting still and looking at the fish rod). Thank god I had my brother, who made up different games or he just drove me insane with teasing and making fun of me – sure did beat sitting and staring at the water. My brother is also a passionate fisherman, although he takes fishing to a next level of passion – he probably has more fishing equipment than anybody I know, but still he hasn`t brought home any fishes for me to eat. I never got that sport fishing thing.

Fishing is also a passion of Paula`s father, Ivan. He is the one that got Mojca hooked on the whole fishing madness (so, there you have it, my fishing metaphor). He likes to take Mojca with him when he goes fishing and she loves it. She is so not like me about this it is not even funny. She can sit next to her granddad and stare at the water for hours at the time, even when it is freezing. When they catch a fish, it doesn`t bother her if they kill it or she will hold it and play with it and she will eat it (cooked of course) afterwards. No problem.

Mojca has brought this passion for fishing to Germany. Here she has double misfortune. First, I don`t fish, neither does Paula. But, for Mojca, I was willing to learn. And that brings us to the second misfortune; the Germany has very strict laws about fishing. First you have to through an educational course, then pass an exam for fishing and an exam for a boat. I know this because a nice German fisherman told us, when I asked him where I can buy a fishing licence for a small lake outside Bayreuth, where we go and watch people fishing (this is what I do for my Mojca). Fishing is therefore not an option in Germany. All we will do is go around with fake fish rods and pretend we are fishing and I just hope that keeps Mojca satisfied. Although when I tried to explain to her that it is not really a real fishing rod, she burst out in tears that it is, it is a real fishing rod. Afterwards I couldn`t explain to her why we don`t actually catch any fish. I was too afraid to repeat my previous argument.

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But this shows how children pick up habits of the adults. Every day I see them putting a mirror to my face as they are mimicking and repeating the things I do – the bad part of this is, that they usually repeat the things that are not nice or are embarrassing. Yesterday I heard them playing a dragon and a dog game. I don`t know exactly what they do in the game, but I did hear Mojca (who was playing the dragon at the time) say that she has to go home, and Ambrož (who was the dog) asked her why. Mojca answered him that she has to go to the toilet for number two. I started laughing. It was that day that we had to hurry home from the playground, because I had to go to the toilet. All who know me, know I need to have a toilet in a five minutes radius otherwise there will be a mess. Mojca picked up on that and used it in a game they were playing. Another thing I heard them was when they were playing a game of marriage – they liked our marriage process. And at one point Mojca said to Ambrož that if he will not sort his clothing and get a shave, the marriage is cancelled. Hm, I wonder where she got that from.

That is why I get nervous when they see thing like this (warning, explicit images ahead):

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Fornicating in a public place. / Spolni odnosi v javnosti.

And this:

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The mating game. / Osvajanje.

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and even this:

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The result of previous acts. / Posledica prejšnjih dejanj.

And they start asking: “Daddy what are they doing?” and any answer follow countless of whys.

Ribarjenje po slovensko:

Ena stvar, ki je nisem pričakoval, ko sem postal oče – med tisočimi stvarmi, kit e presenetijo, ko postaneš roditelj – je dejstvo, da imajo otroki različne faze. Faze glede tega kaj jejo in kaj ne, faze glede obnašanja, faze glede procesa učenja in faze kaj jih zanima in kaj ne. Mojca je v fazi, ko ima zelo rada ribe in ribičijo.

Ribičija je bila od vedno prisotna v naši družini. Moj oče je bil zelo strasten ribič. Velikokrat je peljal mene in brata po cele dneve na ribičijo. Se mi je nekajkrat zgodilo, da bi skoraj umrl od dolgčasa (v bistvu je ribičija sedenje na miru in gledanje v palico ali plovec). Še dobro, da je bil z mano moj brat, ki si je znal izmisliti kakšne igrice, ali pa mi je tako nagajal, da se mi je zmešalo – pa še to je bilo bolje kot strmenje v ribiško palico in plovec. Sedaj je tudi moj brat strasten ribič, samo da on svojo strast pelje v nove višave. Ima namreč več ribiške opreme kot kdorkoli, ki ga poznam. Kljub temu še nikoli ni prinesel domov kakšne ribe, da bi jo pojedli – nekako ne razumem te športne ribičije.

Ribičija je tudi strast Paulinega očeta Ivana. On je odgovoren, da je Mojca tako močno zapela za ribičijo (no, s tem pa sem izčrpal svoje ribiške metafore). Ivan velikokrat vzame Mojco s sabo na ribičijo, kjer Mojca ure in ure mirno stoji ob svojemu dedku in čaka na ribe tudi v mrazu. Za njo je to najboljša uživancija. Sploh se ne morem načuditi kako različna sva si v tem – kot, da ne bi bila moja (seveda je moja, samo Kuzma lahko tako dolgo spi zjutraj). In, ko ulovita kakšno ribico, Mojco nič ne gane, če jo takoj ubijeta, ali pa se z njo malce najprej poigra, potem pa jo (ko jo skuhamo, seveda) poje. Za njo to ni problem.

Mojca je svojo strst do ribičije prinesla s sabo v Nemčijo. Tukaj pa je naletela na dve oviri. Prva je ta, da jaz pač nisem ribič. Ampak, za svojo Mojco sem se pripravljen naučiti. Druga ovira pa je, da ima Nemčija zelo stroga pravila glede ribičije. Najprej moraš opraviti tečaj o ribičiji, potem pa uspešno izdelati izpit (v nemščini) za ribičijo in za čoln. Šele potem lahko kupiš karto za ribarjenje. To sem izvedel od zelo prijaznega nemškega ribiča, ki je ribaril na enem od majhnih jezer v okolici Bayreutha, ko sem ga vprašal, kje lahko kupim karto za ribarjenje. Tja namreč hodimo gledati ljudi kako ribarijo in to vsaj nekoliko poteši Mojčino željo po ribičiji. Tako vse kaže, da v Nemčiji ne bomo ribarili. Upam samo, da se bo Mojca zadovoljila s tem, da hodimo po okoliških jezerih in se igramo, da ribarimo, ko namakamo v vodo vrvice navezane na navadne palice. Enkrat sem ji poskušal razložiti, da to sicer niso prave ribiške palice, pa je po nekajminutnem premisleku planila v jok in mi je zabičala, da seveda je to prava ribiška palica. Ko me je potem vprašala kako, da še nismo ulovili kakšne ribice, se ji več niti nisem upal ponovno povedati, da nima prave ribiške palice. Slike od naših ribiških poskusov so zgoraj lepo vidni.

Iz vsega tega je lepo razvidno kako otroki kopirajo obnašanje starejših. Tako mi vsakodnevno nastavljata ogledalo mojemu obnašanju, ko ponavljata stvari, ki sem jih jaz delal čez dan. Na žalost pa so to ravno tiste stvari, ki niso ravno meni v ponos. Na primer, prejšnji dan sta se Mojca in Ambrož igrala neko izmišljeno igro o zmaju in psu – kaj je vsebina igre mi ni jasno – ko je Mojca (ki je bila takrat zmaj) rekla, da mora domov, Ambrož (ki je bil takrat pes) pa jo je seveda vprašal zakaj. Na to mu je odgovorila, da mora iti hitro kakat. Ko sem se nehal smejati, sem v bistvu ugotovil, da je posnemala mene. Tisti dan smo namreč morali v naglici oditi z igrišča domov, ker me je prijelo kakat. Kdorkoli me pozna, ve, da moram imeti vedno stranišče v bližini, če ne se lahko zgodi kakšna nesreča. Mojca je to opazila in vnesla v igro. Podobna stvar se je zgodila malo prej, ko sta se igrala igro o poroki – jima je bila namreč zelo všeč najina poročna procedura. Na neki točki igre je Mojca zabičala Ambrožu, da če se ne bo uredil in pobril, poroka odpade. Le kje je to pobrala, me zanima.

Zato sem vedno živčen, ko zunaj vidimo kakšne scene kot so na zgornjih (nazornih) slikah. V takih priložnostih namreč vedno sledijo vprašanja in vsakemu odgovoru na vprašanje sledijo nešteti “zakaj”-i.