Saturday, 26 April 2008


9.30am Tennis lesson. Thankfully, this passes without major incident. Last week's wires are still intact.

11. 30am Drive to the lake which is used round here for throwing yourself in. Seriously. Windsurfing, kayaking, water skiing, kneeboarding (whatever that is), tipping upside down in canoes, that sort of thing. I have brought Shark here for research purposes.

I slow the day up considerably when we arrive because I become sulky and resent the 50p charge for car parking. I drive off in a huff and park in a field some distance away and make Shark walk back. This she does not like and lets me know about it, so much in fact that I think it may be worth the 50p so I do not have to listen to the horror stories of hummocky lumpy grass. It was just as well I saved the 50p, I tell Shark one hour later, because booking the sailing course for you is quite expensive and I need to save every 50p I can. Shark is delighted that she is on her way to the open ocean at last, even by means of the local lake, and promises not to mention the grass once on the trek back to the car. I get, instead, a big squeeze of my hand.

1.30 pm Demand that everyone enjoy themselves in the garden, eat lunch outside, even though it is dry bread rolls from the Co-op. Tell Tiger I haven't forgotten about sorting out some time for you at the stables. That is next. Now bloody well shut up complaining that Shark gets everything and you get nothing and take off your coat and enjoy it because look! We have reached 20C which means the weather is English Spring and lovely for the time of year, and alright I agree we are all doomed with global warming. Get out the plastic snakes and play with those.

1.40pm Squirrel runs off to amuse herself in the garden, mostly by digging up the fir tree and finding worms to put on the sacrificial altar for the blue tit we'd all like to believe is nesting under the bedroom window.

1.43pm Leave Shark and Tiger bickering and come inside to typeset Chapters Five to Ten.

3.00pm Hearing only occasional screaming, so things must be going well down in the mud patch.

6.30pm Dig sets fire to the barbecue. This may be its final rite of passage on its way to Valhalla, where it will probably provide burned goat meat to the fallen and slaughtered. Dig bought this remarkable bit of equipment from the Co-op several years ago for £4.50. We use it dutifully and need only a small amount of sun to encourage us. Sadly the legs are starting to buckle under the weight of Linda McCartney's doings. Now the whole thing has taken to wobbling dangerously every time the sweetcorn lands on it, so we keep a bucket of water close by, just in case.

6.49pm Everyone complains the sausages are burned. Dig tells everyone to be quiet or else he'll get another packet out.

7.30pm Time to set another chapter while Dig is in charge of the evening's entertainment.

And here is a photograph of Shark, having enjoyed herself in the garden all afternoon, chewing thoughtfully on a burned sausage and contemplating a life at sea.


Kelly Jene said...

She does look very thoughtful, doesn't she. Looks like a yummy spread to me, as well.

What a day! You really do appear to have the patience of a saint (for the most part). I admire you!

Michelle said...

lol at the car parking. I do object to it too but have finally reached the conclusion that it is worth the £3 for the all day parking as it is safer (from vandalism) and a shorter walk in event of rain/child tiredness/needing to get something we need that we'd left in the car by accident. Once paid £2 for 4 hour parking and was so stressed about not being late back for the car that I now think £3 for my mental wellbeing is worth it.

Except I made Jol stay out in the rain on Tues until we'd reached 4 hours and 10 minutes to justify the all day parking decision :-)

Michelle said...

And Clo is p-d off that her friends are 8 and over spurious height requirements to do all fun things this summer.

Suburbia said...

I so enjoyed reading this. It sounds familiar except that mine are less adventurous!

Trevor said...

Life at sea?

Go, Shark!