Next month is going to be very special for us as it will be our daughter’s first Christmas and if I’m honest I’m really quite excited.
The shopping has begun and already we have a secret hiding space for all her presents. Not that hiding things from a 4 month old is that hard but a surprise is a surprise after all.
We’ve got the usual “My First Christmas” outfits and a whole bunch of toys which she’ll no doubt try and eat but I wanted to find something a bit different too.

Last week I found myself strolling through ChinaTown when I passed an old antique shop I’ve never noticed before.
Intrigued, I thought I’d take a look.
As I walked through the door I heard strange noise that was hard to describe. It sort of went “Noop Noop” or maybe “Nwurp Nwurp”. It was coming from a small box in the corner of the room.
Just as I approached the box to take a closer look a strange old man appeared.


“What’s in the box? I have to buy it” I said to him.
“That’s very special North Pole Qǐ é, not for sale”
“I’ll give you a hundred British pounds” I chanced
“No, now you must leave this place”


I left the shop disappointed but my luck changed as the owner’s grandson caught up with me outside and sells me the creature, explaining that his family needs the money.
He did have three peculiar instructions which he told me I needed to follow.
1. Don’t expose Qǐ é to bright light unless you are planning on taking him to Oxford street to see the Christmas lights, he’ll like that.
2. Never get Qǐ é wet, he especially dislikes baby dribble.
3. Most importantly: no matter how much he cries or begs, never, ever feed him after midnight.


When I got the Qǐ é home and opened the box and what faced us was a sort of Penguin. It was a bit smaller than a normal penguin and it’s feathers had what could be described as a plush quality to them.
We decided to name him Mojo after the famous baby penguin actor in the wonderful TV series Our Zoo.


My 4 month old daughter loves Mojo, in fact she loves him so much that the first thing she did was put his whole head in her mouth. This caused Mojo to convulse and produce five new Qǐ é from his own body. Their temperament is very different from Mojo; they torment the family’s pet dog. One of the new Qǐ é, dubbed Stripe for his white quiff of hair, acts as their leader and is very hostile to Mojo.


None of the Qǐ é really like going out in the day so tomorrow I think I’ll take them to see the Christmas Lights in Oxford street which is just down the road from where my old science teacher now works.
I think I’ll take Mojo in to see him to make sure my daughter’s dribble hasn’t hurt him.


More tomorrow