They say pets look like their owners. I suspect that if I ever stop colouring my hair, this may well turn out to be true!!
I just wanted to share this with you. My Darling Daughter is studying Biomedical Science at University. She absolutely loves science, is completely absorbed by her subject, and is so passionate when she talks about it that even the most disinterested of parties finds themselves captivated. The written word is her weaker point, and to my amusement, she will send me drafts of her assignments, so that I can proof-read them, because apparently, I am good at that stuff! It doesn’t occur to her that I may as well be reading instructions for building the starship Enterprise. In Kling-on!!
She is bordering on obsessive about her studies, and becomes very stressed as a result, so she has taken to drawing and painting in order to relax. She is a huge fan of the British street artist, Banksy, and has done several very technically accurate copies. So when I spotted this, in the background of a photo in her digs, I assumed it was another. I pointed it out, remarking that I hadn’t seen that particular copy before. Transpires it is her own work, very much *in the style of*, but a total original. She is quite dismissive of it, but I think it is stunning. What do you think? I apologise for the quality, as I said , this has been lifted from the background of a photograph. It was all drawn freehand.
Oh, lentil soup, I applaud you
For keeping my family alive.
Cheap and delicious,
And smugly nutritious,
With protein, and three of the five.
But while I applaud your importance,
I have a confession to make.
You cause me to fart,
And deep in my heart,
I long for a fat, juicy steak!!
(Inspired by Claudette
Well, more of a bet!!)
I have just had one of many somewhat dubious conversations with my fifteen year old. The sort where I wonder whether I should really have found some excuse to go into the kitchen and thus nip it in the bud. Except I got the giggles, and allowed it to descend into ultra outrageousness!! I am still not quite sure which topic for discussion on BBC’s political programme, Question Time, triggered his train of thought, but I suspect it may have been his brother’s remark that one of the guest politicians was a w!#ker!
“Did you know that the taste of your sperm depends on what you have eaten?” he blithely announced.
(You have probably already realised that this is the point at which I should have left the room).
Noncommittal grunt from mother, snort from older brother. Undaunted by lack of enthusiasm, he warmed to his subject.
“How did scientists discover that fact? Does that mean someone tasted it?”
Brother showing interest now, mother trying to keep features arranged into facsimile of responsible adult.
“I mean, how did they advertise that job? And who applied for it? Did they leave school with that as their career ambition? Or perhaps they were targeted as unsuspecting unemployed wine-tasters? Do you have a discerning palette? Are you looking for new challenges? Can you think outside the box?”
Features going into meltdown now, brother already cackling.
“”Hhhhmmmmm…….I’m getting hints of garlic, with high notes of chilli and cumin, and…….let me see……a backnote of german lager! Am I correct?” “Ok Barry, lets do the reveal….. ” (brother does suspenseful drum roll) “….and you’re correct!!!!!””
Both boys now doing fake audience rapturous applause, responsible adult crying with laughter!!
It suddenly struck me today, as I was having a shower, that I am only ten years younger than my father was when he died. I was playing my number game at the time. Not when my father died, you understand, when I was in the shower. I do maths exercises in my head as I wash, always have, I think it just wakes my brain up. And there it was. I am nearly as old as my father.
Which is a bit daunting, when your brain has done such a good job of convincing you that you are still a teenager. An illusion aided and abetted by your habit of only looking in a mirror when you don’t have your glasses on, thereby creating a beautiful soft focus effect. And never when you are naked!! Alright, I will concede that I have been aware for a while that my feet have turned into my mother’s. Perhaps not quite as awful, she used to use hers as a threat. As in “If you don’t get that bedroom tidied up, I will put my feet on you!” We tidied. Those feet were terrifying.
Barely giving me a chance to absorb this fact, my brain then did one of it’s hyperlinks, and smugly reminded me how old my children are now. My oldest son is on the start of the gentle incline to thirty. My middle son is almost not-teen, and my littley, all six foot two of him, will be able to vote, drink, and marry with my consent in six months. Scary!! But it’s my daughter that I have been thinking about all day. She is only a year younger than I was when I first gave birth. That is quite frankly terrifying.
I was made to be a boy mum. I can do loud, smelly, bouncy, rough-and-tumbly. With loads of hugs in between. I love rugby, dammit! But I was overjoyed when darling daughter arrived. And immediately took over! Her father had spent the entire pregnancy impressing upon me how much he wanted a boy, and then promptly fell head over heels the minute he set eyes on her huge blue eyes, and strawberry blonde curls. It was a mutual adoration that continues to this day. As a toddler, she could not understand why I was allowed to share a bed with her Daddy, and if I was presumptuous enough to sit next to him, she would, dependant on her mood, either squeeze between us, or announce, in a lady bountiful manner, “S’okay, I let you.”
So here she was, my very own doll, to dress and play with. Except she had very different ideas from a very early age. By the time she was three, she was dressing herself, and styling her own hair. And staring in disdain at my attempts as her wardrobe mistress! Since she was born four days before my birthday (which has been forgotten ever since) I naively assumed we would be similar in character. I haven’t really believed in astrology since my daily forecast said I was at my sensual peak, when I was almost ten months pregnant, with raging heartburn. But still, I just thought……! Polar opposite is how she turned out. Which means our relationship has been ……. interesting!!
To Be Continued ……………….
Day Seventeen. And today we are being encouraged to increase our commenting confidence. I have to admit I have been really inspired to leave a comment by some of the amazing and diverse posts I have been reading. I feel that if someone has worked hard to produce an excellent piece of work, that inspires me, or touches a raw nerve, or simply makes me laugh loudly, then it is only fair to let them know how much that effort is appreciated. I am also delighted when someone takes the time to do the same for me. Their opinions are an indicator of whether my ideas were clearly enough expressed, and where I am veering off the path.
What has really struck me, though, is how involved you quickly become in the story unfolding in front of your eyes. This is not the the arena of the flippant, three word comment of Facebook, accompanied by an emoticon or two, and yet another request to play Candy Crush! And invariably lol. (I have a real problem with people of a certain age, who, until six months ago, probably thought that stood for lots of love, who then go into lol overdrive, and use it more frequently than unnecessary apostrophes!!) There is a far greater intimacy involved. People are baring their souls, sharing their hopes and aspirations, trusting you to help them grow.
I suddenly find that I know more about these fellow bloggers, only recently introduced, than I know about work colleagues I have known for years. And feel fiercely supportive of them, want to see them grow and blossom. I am delighted to find some who are equally as mad as I am, find myself thinking almost as much about the content of my comments as my posts, and eagerly anticipating the response. I have realised that those missives don’t need to be a small essay, nor do I have to feel obliged to say something about every single item I read. I do it when I really feel something, have genuinely been affected by the subject matter.
I do try, however, to respond to those comments left for me, to show that I really appreciate their time, attention, and opinion. Blogging is definitely a two way street, and I cannot flourish unless I am helping others to do the same.
So I shall continue to make a point of reading, and responding, on a daily basis. Lol. Rofl. Lmao. Smiley face!
Excuse me. I will be with you in a moment. I am just making room on my mantlepiece for my Liebster Award. My third Liebster!!! I am a Trilieb!! Thank you, the wonderful Romeo for my nomination. And for some fabulous questions!!! If you haven’t checked out her blog, do it now!! Now I tell you!! I am always in awe of just how deliciously stylish it is, and try to hide my nails while I am visiting.
Hokay, eleven more little known facts about me!!
Romeo’s questions to me…………..
Right, gird your loins, here are my eleven questions ……………
Ok, hold your breath…….. here are my nominees!!
But wait!! What is this? More nominations!! I shall need a separate room at this rate!! Thank you, the wonderful KiwiBee and delicious Laura Feasey!!! I am really honoured that you all consider me worthy of this award!! I have to put my hands up and say that I am now running out of questions, so I hope you don’t mind, but I would like the three of you to share the questions!!
And finally……..the Rules!!
The Liebster Award is awarded to bloggers with under 200 followers to try to promote their blog a little and also bring together a community of bloggers. The rules of the competition are as follows:
So there you have it!! May I take this opportunity to announce that I am formally retiring from Liebstering, and handing over the crown to those blogs in the blogisphere who are equally deserving!!
Today, I posted a comment in reply to The Opinionated Man‘s Daily Opinion question, ‘How long do you normally stay angry at someone?’ I said that it was normally about thirty seconds, and he seemed quite surprised at the speed. I was being honest.
Perhaps what he should have asked me was how long it takes me to become angry with someone? Because that answer may have surprised him more.
If asked, the majority of people who know me would describe me as easy going, positive, extrovert, and more than just slightly mad! They won’t, and will never see me angry. In fact, I am normally the peacemaker, stepping in to diffuse possible conflict, normally by making everyone laugh. I am the happy, smiley clown. A former work colleague once said that in moments of stress, my appearance was like a cloud of Valium!
But I have a temper. I am a redhead after all!! With a potent mixture of Celt and Eastender in my genes. I am not a push-over, and have no time for injustice of any kind. The reason for my apparent lack of aggression is quite simple. You wouldn’t like me when I’m angry!!
I have my father’s temper. Once the fuse has been lit, it is explosive, igniting a ring of fire around me, and burning all in its wake. While I freeze within its flaming heart. All other emotion wiped from me, just icy fury. It is short-lived, but violently destructive, and leaves me feeling physically and mentally exhausted. At its peak, I have no awareness of my words or actions, and that terrifies me. I loathe anything that makes me feel out of control. I drink but don’t do drunk , or stoned *, or very high rollercoasters with ridiculous names. Therefore I can count on the fingers of one hand the number of times I have actually succumbed to my anger.
So how long does it take to make me angry? Months, sometimes years. It takes a doggedly persistent person to push me to the point of no return. Those that have succeeded, never return. You have been warned.
*On the subject of being stoned, I have only ever had one drug related experience. At nineteen years old, friends persuaded me to join them in smoking a joint or two prior to an evening out. While all around me relaxed into giggling silliness, I felt no effect other than a ridiculously dry mouth, which meant my top lip got stuck every time I smiled. By the time we reached our venue for the evening, I was beginning to find the giggling silliness extremely irritating,and my head was hurting. I climbed onto a bar stool, and then had a fit. Literally. I started to jerk violently, and my gathered group, in their hazy happiness, thought I was dancing, and proceeded to clap along in time to the jerking, right up to the moment I fell off the stool. and hit the floor!!
I never indulged again!
I did not take this photograph. Sadly, I have no information regarding who did. But I love frogs. And this particular photo makes me smile with delight every time I look at it!! So I thought I would share the smile.
I love clouds. They fascinate me and I could happily spend hours just lying watching them. One day when I am rich and famous, I shall get me a proper camera, so that I can capture their beauty more clearly.
I am very lucky with my view of the sky and sea, I can’t imagine not being near the water.
Clouds and the moon. Now that is my idea of perfection.
Last year, someone stole all my underwear. Every single piece that I possessed. Except, obviously, the items I was wearing. I was devastated. I am not the most girly of girls, leaning steeply to the tomboy side of the spectrum. I love my skinny jeans, wear my Docs with dresses, and would happily sleep in my leather jacket, given the option. But I have a HUGE weakness for undies. Not for me the wearing of mismatched bra and pants, or the Bridget Jones big knickers. As for greying and baggy? Never!! You won’t catch me dead in them!
Which is where it all stems from, I suspect. My fragrant mother impressed upon me at a very early age the necessity of never leaving the house without matching smalls, in case I should be mown down by a rogue vehicle, and find myself being stripped in a hospital. She could conceive of no greater shame than having to attend the deathbed of a child whose knickers didn’t match her bra! (As I grew older, she also insisted that I carried with me a spare pair of knickers and a toothbrush, in case of unexpected encounters. I jest not!! She would check my bag before I left the house!) I became an underwear snob, flinching at the sight of VPL, or unsupported breasts. No matter how dire my financial circumstances were, I would treat myself to one new piece each month.
By the time I crossed paths with the Knicker Nicker, I had a whole chest of drawers (heheh!!) purely for my collection. In the event of my washing machine breaking down, I could have survived quite happily for many months. And then I foolishly decided to dip my toe, gingerly, into the murky waters of the sugar daddy.
It seemed, on the face of it, to be an ideal situation. He had money, I did not. He wanted to spend that money on me. He wined and dined me, sent me flowers, bought me presents. Heck, he even did some work on my flat! Which, as it transpired, was how he obtained a copy of my key. He didn’t live in the same country as me, so I only saw him briefly, every couple of months. But I began to feel uncomfortable very quickly. I didn’t like the feeling of being beholden to someone, was extremely wary of any element of control. So when he announced that he had booked a holiday to the Maldives, I really wasn’t sure.
Friends laughed at my doubts. Threw every cliché possible at me. Life is too short being the most uttered. I sought the advice of my bestest male friend. He suggested that if I really felt so uncomfortable with the amount of money being spent on me, then I should compile a price list of favours provided, and invoice him at the end of the holiday!! Perhaps not the best advice, but we giggled for ages!!
In the end, the lure of the Maldives was too much to ignore. It has always been my vision of paradise, and I knew I would probably never have this chance again. So I went. And it was awful.
Not the Maldives. They are truly stunning. I was entranced. The people are the most charming, funny, and beautiful people I have encountered. I swam, I dived with sharks, and turtles, and Manta rays, and the most delicious rainbow of fish. The sand was pure white, the sea a deep azure, and I was completely delighted.
Except by my companion. Taking a long haul flight, and then spending a week on an island in the Indian Ocean, with a man you have nothing in common with, and realise you don’t actually like, is not an edifying experience. He took full advantage of the free drink available both on the flight and on the island, and so spent his week in a drunken haze. When he wasn’t writing lists. Our days were planned with military precision, most of it revolving around bars. He even chose to pencil in the moments he expected me to sleep with him. (I discovered that if I rubbed this out, he didn’t even notice.) He didn’t like diving, couldn’t understand why I would want to read a book, and despite the vast choice of food on offer, sulked because there was no mashed potato, and described red peppers as exotic fruit! He was rude to the staff, and wore shirts that made me want to cry with embarrassment.
I couldn’t wait to leave. I told him that I saw no point in continuing our acquaintance. He couldn’t, wouldn’t accept this. I stood my ground. He then began to email me with increasing frequency, listing all the purchases he had made. I eventually had to block him. So he broke into my house, and stole my underwear.
So I did what I should have done in the first place. I took my friend’s advice. I sent him a price list. And an invoice. I haven’t seen or heard from him since. Nor, sadly, from my underwear!!
Four years ago, I moved into a women’s refuge. It was the single most difficult decision I have ever made, and the lowest point in a life punctuated by low. My marriage had collapsed past the point of no return, and I found myself in the unenviable position of sharing a house with a man who resented my very existence. I was unable to afford the rent on a flat large enough to accommodate all of my children, and the home atmosphere was becoming increasingly aggressive.
I wasn’t able to take all of my children. My oldest son was already living in the UK, my daughter refused to even consider the idea, and my middle son was already too old, at fifteen, to be allowed to live with me. That broke my heart, having to tell him I was leaving without him. We sat on my bed, and sobbed. So I left, with my youngest son, then eleven, and two suitcases.
We shared a room initially, with another woman and her teenage daughter. I am not very good at communal living. I have a morbid fear of public toilets, and cockroaches. The shared bathroom was my idea of a nightmare, since it combined both. I would turn the light on, and then wait for ten minutes, to allow the cockroaches to skitter into hiding. Then shower quickly, eyes squeezed tightly shut, so that I didn’t have to look at stray hairs left by the other residents. And check the floor before I stepped back out, in case the braver roaches had already ventured from their hiding places (We are talking big buggers here, at least three inches in length).
I am still living within the refuge, but I am now in a separate flat, and have all my children back with me. And my very own bathroom. Without a cockroach in sight. And my now ex-husband and I get on far better than we ever did as a couple.
What struck me most about the initial move, was the reaction of other people. I have a plummy voice. Think a cross between Julie Andrews and Emma Thompson. Private school and a straw boater will do that for you!! My Torn Apart (himself a possessor of a voice that makes Hugh Grant sound like a cockney barrow boy) recently admitted that the first time he met me, his initial thought was “Oh thank god!! Posh totty!!” So there was a hint of disbelief that I was in such a situation, the assumption being that I lived in a palace, with a butler called Albert.
I was also struck by the preconception that the women in the refuge were all somehow ‘no better than they oughta be’, as if they had somehow brought this upon themselves. And that it was perfectly acceptable to ask the most personal of questions, in the same way that virtual strangers feel that they can pat your stomach when you are pregnant ( I would always counteract this by patting them on the bum).
This lead to one of my favourite encounters. I found myself one day being interrogated by a work colleague about my situation, as I attempted to have a quiet cup of tea in the staff canteen. I am not ashamed about where I live, but nor am I willing to discuss my situation in detail with anyone. Having neatly fielded numerous questions from this particular female for ten minutes, I could feel my patience start to fray. And then she presented me with an irresistible opportunity. The conversation went thus……
Her: So when will you be rehoused?
Me: I have no idea, it could be several years.
Her: I suppose they will give you one of the new flats?
Me: No, it is more likely to be one of the older ones.
Her: That will be expensive for you, it will probably need to be refurbished.
Me: Actually, I have a lot of friends in the building trade who have already offered their services.
Her: You will still have to pay them though.
At which point, I took a deep breath, looked her straight in the eye, and said
“Oh, no. I don’t pay them, I sleep with them. It gives me something to do in the evenings, and the work is always done to a high standard!”
I then left the room.
Two days later, I opened the tea room door to be greeted by a deathly silence. The sort of silence that only occurs when you have been the topic of conversation just seconds earlier.
Adapting the stance of a saddle sore cowboy, hands pressed to the small of my back, I staggered across the room. Turned to face the group at the table. And announced ………..
“My bookshelves are coming along beautifully.”
This is it!! The Fred Bare Award!! No rules! No lists! Just do your thang! But while you are doing that, answer a couple of questions. Then make up a few of your own. If you want to!! Or read a book instead!! Or dance like no-one is watching! Plot the demise of Claudette. The devisor of this evil scheme. Or her wicked cohort, Nikki!! Propose to George Clooney. Don’t propose to Richard Gere. Or Nikki will kill you!! Your choices are endless!! The questions for today’s challenge are as follows……………….!
Kangaroos. Kan they really? And when was the last time you Garooed?
Haggis. Fact or fiction?
Do blondes have more fun? If so, where?
Day Eleven. And we are encouraged to go out and meet the neighbours, and say hello. This is actually something I really enjoy doing, and make a point of looking at least half a dozen new blogs a day, as well as catching up on those that I already follow. I am naturally drawn to those blogs that have a similar feel to mine, but I love the diversity out there. And I am fascinated by being able to connect to people all over the world, who I may never have had the opportunity to meet otherwise. And in awe of the wealth of talent.
So these are the new flavours I tried out for this assignment.
I love poetry, have done since I was a child. One of my favourite poems from then was Escape at Bedtime, by Robert Louis Stevenson, in particular the line “and the pail by the wall, would be half full of water and stars.” I am also a huge fan of A.A.Milne, and can recite “The Knight Whose Armour Didn’t Squeak” off by heart. Occasionally, I am inspired to write some of my own, but it isn’t my natural style. I was absolutely delighted by this poem on Poesy Plus Polemics which was both brilliantly clever and deliciously funny.
I really admire determination in people who have a dream, and are determined to pursue it despite all the obstacles in their way.This came across really strongly in this post on The World According To Me. I had no focus at all when I left school and ventured into the big wide world and really admire people who know what they want to achieve, despite all the obstacles put in their way.
I love writing, love the feel and smell and taste of words, and the way they draw you into a story. I have an idea that bounces around my head for the book I want to write, but at the moment, it is still ricocheting madly, because I haven’t found a way of bringing it to life. So I am always in awe of people who have discovered that key. The Relative Cartographer has found a fascinating way of taking his in depth research into his family tree, and developing a story around it. It is a work in progress, but it has me hooked already!
Then there is wickedly funny madness!! I just let my imagination flow for my posts, everything in there is true, but I love to find laughter in even the most challenging of situations. I absolutely adored this page on The Odd Things for its blissfully crazy slant on something we have all done, whether conciously or unwittingly! I giggled for ages afterwards.
Can I just say that I would have dearly loved to have mentioned every single one of the blogs I read, and make a special mention for Claudette, who, as it turns out, is as completely mad as me!! And say a huge thank you to all of you for welcoming me into your community.
My brain had a bit of a blip today. I felt pretty damn odd for an hour or so, and more than just a bit sorry for myself. So my fifteen year old son took it upon himself to cheer me up by demonstrating his latest skill. Sadly, it wasn’t the ability to clean his teeth without being frogmarched to the bathroom, or putting dirty washing in the linen basket. Nonetheless, it left me speechless, and in awe!
He is already six foot two, and still growing rapidly. I swear if you watch him for long enough you can see it happen. And still at that gangly teenage stage where he doesn’t yet seem in total control of his limbs. Which made it all the more stunning when he sat on the floor in front of me, and proceeded to wrap his legs behind his head!! No hands involved, he simply leaned back slightly, lifted both legs in the air, toes pointed towards the ceiling, and then wrapped them round the back of his neck!! Amazing!!!!! I sat there, stunned, and then the two of us dissolved into hysterical giggles!!!
I have no idea what use this talent will be to him in later life, but at that moment in time it made me feel a damn sight better!!
P.s. My inability to control my thought/speech reflex struck again at yoga this week. On being complemented by the instructor on my shoulder stand, I blithely announced to my fellow earnest yogaists, and to the world in general, that I have always been at my best on my back with my legs in the air!!
One of the challenges I read about on The Daily Post just recently was Fifty by Vincent Mars. The challenge was to write something in exactly fifty words. For someone who talks way too much, that was one mighty challenge. So here it is. The moment I met up with my torn-apart again (I once read somewhere that we were all once joined to our soul-mate, and then torn apart. If we are blessed, we find them again. Told you I am an incurable romantic!).
It also gave me a really good excuse to play around on picmonkey again!!
For the majority of the time, money is no object in my house. Seriously. I defy anyone to find an object that even vaguely resembles money. Not even behind the cushions on the sofa. I’ve checked.
This frequently leads to moments that my 19 year old son calls PPP’s. Poor People’s Problems. I have had two such moments today. The first happened as I attempted to unwrap the last remaining toilet roll, one handed, whilst clearing the bathroom floor of wet towels, and discarded underpants. The roll broke free of its bonds, and I then performed a brief display of my keepy uppy skills, before I managed to slam dunk it into the toilet bowl! I now have it propped on the heated towel rail, in the forlorn hope it will dry out enough to serve purpose.
I then spent a very long ten minutes carefully rolling up my small tube of hugely overpriced lip cream in order to extract the very last smidge. It suddenly squirted out, shot over my shoulder, and landed on the dog! For a moment I toyed with the idea of retrieving it, but even I have my limits!
Never mind!! Pay day tomorrow!!
Last week, I had my brain injected. Again! This is not something I choose to do on a slow week, when there is nothing remotely interesting on TV. Or because it is a new-age fad that will make me look seventeen again. Or because my kids have an evil plan to inherit my millions. Or because the local hospital is looking for volunteers, a bit like a hair salon. Unfortunately, in recent months, it’s become a necessity.
Last November, my brain exploded. Just a little bit. Enough to have an effect, not enough to kill me. Enough to interrupt the Monday management meeting though, for that I am secretly, maliciously delighted! At first, I thought someone had hit me with a hammer, because blunt object wielding assassins are an integral part of any retail ‘business is so bad you can forget a pay rise’ meeting. But the look on my colleagues faces gave me a hint that this was not part of a secret team building excercise.
I don’t do ill. I am one of those really aggravating people who breath deeply, whilst all around me people are choking to death on their own mucus. My immune system is cast iron, due in part, to my mother’s extension of the three second food drop rule to a minute and a half, and her actively encouraging me to play with anyone suffering from an infectious or contagious disease, in order for me to “get it over and done with!” Unfortunately, exploding brains wasn’t one of them!
So I have been poked, probed, prodded, and scanned to within an inch of my life. And now I need to have my brain injected on a regular basis. This means every six weeks, I have to venture out in public without adding a single product to my hair. I do not have the sort of mane that makes me a shoe-in for a head double on Tangled. In fact I have three hairs and a nit. Without any product, even the nit leaves home. I am an ex-hairdresser, for goodness sake. This is akin to making me walk through the streets naked!
Once at the hospital, I am then drugged liberally. I have a high resistance to anaesthetic (and indeed to alcohol, I am not a cheap date!) so must be given the same amount used to fell a small elephant. Once this has taken affect, the theatre nurses then amuse themselves by covering me in iodine, using the same paint splatter technique favoured by Jackson Pollock. By this time, I am so doped up that I find this incredibly funny, and give artistic direction. The surgeon then does his work (why, oh why do they insist on starting it with the line “just a little prick”?! In my drug induced euphoria, that is even funnier than the iodine wash!) and I am led out to recovery.
Our day surgery unit has very recently been refurbished, and last week, once I had sobered up sufficiently to stop giggling, one of the nurses suggested I might like to try one of their new, super comfy chairs in the day room. I wandered through, and in my normal unreserved fashion, collapsed back into the luxurious black leather upholstery, whilst smiling through my iodine splattered lips at the group of anxious relatives gathered there.
What the kindly nurse had omitted to tell me was that these were reclining chairs. Fully reclining chairs. With a remote control. Which I had unwittingly sat upon. With the result that the seat immediately opened out, much to my bewilderment, and I found myself lying completely prone.
I am English. We English are a strange bunch. In restaurants, we will happily eat our way through burnt offerings, rather than complain about the meal. And upon finding ourselves flat on our backs in the middle of a group of bemused strangers, we would rather have our livers poked out by an eagle, than admit that we are stuck. So I pretended that I had meant to activate the chair, and lay in that position, the remote control firmly wedged in my back, for half an hour, until my best friend arrived to take me home.
She is Scottish. She did just what any self-respecting Scot would do, when confronted by a yellow daubed sassenach lying flat on their back dressed only in a theatre gown. She laughed until she cried. And continued to laugh for the entire journey home.