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An Uninvited Guest

 By Chandroo D.

Recently during a vacation with my family in Vietnam, my wife and I stayed at a luxurious seaside resort villa. There happen to be a small pond scattered with water lilies right in front at the entrance.  Living in this pond were frogs.  The nights were daily filled with the croaking chorus of the frogs. As far as I understand, croaks are basically love serenades, meant to attract a mate.  Just in case you are thinking -- no, this is not a fairy tale of a frog turning into a prince after finding a mate so just bear with me.

One late night, during a heavy thunderstorm and rainfall, my wife and I were returning to our villa with an umbrella in the dark. I lead the way with my miniature key torchlight, watching every step so that I do not trample on a frog or a snail accidentally. There seem to be a lot around the green lawn and pathway leading to our villa. Amazingly, the snails were huge and nothing compared to the tiny ones you see on a frenchman's dinner plate.   As I opened up my entrance door, I thought I saw something quietly darting into our room.  Being pitch dark, I figured it was nothing and perhaps my night vision was acting up on me especially after a few gin and tonics.  Thinking nothing of it, we changed into PJs and got into bed.

At around 4am, I woke up to the disturbing croaking sound coming from the bathroom.  I reluctantly got up and sauntered to our walk-in bathroom.  As I passed my sink in the dark, I kicked something.  Presuming, I must have dropped something accidentally from the sink, I switched on the light and looked down.  Right in front, facing me was this large fat frog with shiny eyes.  We both stared at each other in horror.  He croaked, probably in pain, and I exclaimed OMG!  Still drowsy, I decided to take care of this uninvited guest later when I was fully awake.  Meanwhile, since frogs are comfortable in the dark, I switched off all the lights in our walk-in bathroom, hoping that he will not enter my bedroom and croak on my or my wife's tummy while we were sleeping.

His constant croaking was starting to disturb me more and so at around 6am, I decide to wake up to tackle him and find a way to get him out of my room.  He looked confused and scared in a corner near the bathtub, probably disturbed by the approaching daylight more than me.  I took hold of the drawstring of the nearby wooden venetian blind against the exit door and started to softly brush him with it so that he could slowly get close to the exit door in the bathroom.  I must have looked like an idiot, talking to him and trying to persuade him to move.  "Come on froggy, move over and don't ever even think I am going to persuade my wife to kiss you, so you can turn into a Prince! Move over to the exit door and be free".  With all my noisy persuasive acts and voice, my suspicious wife gets up!  "Who are you talking to and quietly getting rid of through the back door? Are you having an affair?"  Ignoring her, I continued to lightly brush Prince with the drawstring.  Stubborn Prince finally stuck to the side of the tub and refused to budge, no matter how many times I lightly brushed him.  I am using the word 'lightly brush' to assert my Buddhist upbringing of not being cruel to animals.

Next step?  Should I have my wife kiss him, so that he can be released as a Prince and ride away in the sunset with her?  Or shall I kick him out forcibly?  Mentioning the first option to my wife would definitely get me the boot!  So I decide on the second option.  I picked up a hotel magazine and gradually dragged the uninvited guest over the backdoor entrance.  He turned around once, give me a dirty 'you are mean' look and then hopped away.  I immediately shut the door.  Phew! That worked!

Meanwhile, suspicious wife woke up and questioned about my secret affair.  Told her the true facts.  "Taking me for a ride, are you?" was her quick response.  Pondering and seeing her shoes close by, I stopped myself from telling her that perhaps I should have let the Prince take her for a ride instead, out in the sunset!

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