Monthly Archives: June 2006

it would have been a really good idea

In order to combat the boredom of being esconced (I love that word) in a small room for an entire evening and morning, I purchased three talking books.

In a spare fleeting moment this evening, I suddenly remembered to fetch the tape player from Dad’s – racing across the drive and conducting a raid to obtain said audio equipment and returning even faster to my accustomed little room. I even remembered the extention lead… but not the fact that I needed to be able to shut the door.

Why oh why does it need SO MANY batteries? I have two, it needs four.


Still, can’t sit here blogging all night…. got to dash….

Giddy up

You are probably eagerly anticipating a report on Tiddles’ first riding lesson. It was last week, followed by a second one this week. A mad dash after school, through Rock Festival traffic (why do people pay so much money to go when you can hear the thud of the “music” just as well from our back garden?), to arrive for his 1:1 lesson. He’s given an L plate !!! and sent through to the stable yard to wait for his instructor.

While we wait we are amply entertained by the antics of eighteen tiny kittens, five litters born at the stables over the last couple of weeks. They were adorable…. roll over, Charlie! I managed to resist the temptation to smuggle one home… just.


Then my young man was off. For a moment or two I was jealous and wished I was riding alongside him. What is the appeal? I have had loads of riding experiences and all the time it’s been a love/hate relationship. When they walked his horse out into the ring, I remembered the “hate” side of the relationship. Who in their right mind would mount such a resentful and unwelcoming brute? Poor Tiddles didn’t have much choice – still, if he is still keen after this, I thought, then he’s a determined rider.

Buster, for thus was the horse’s name, was a thug. There was no other word for it. He refused to cooperate and poor Tiddles’ legs were aching from the constant need to “encourage” Buster to move. He wouldn’t use the lunge rein, he wouldn’t be led, he wouldn’t do anything in the slightest to be helpful to my poor boy perched up on top and striving valiently to follow instructions. The instructor foolishly got close enough to give Tiddles a good illustration of why you never stand within kicking distance of a horse’s back legs – though she was very brave in carrying on regardless with the lesson, despite having an extremely bruised kneecap, and ran round and round the ring leading this horrid creature in circles. It even gave Tiddles a nip on the fingers, just to show him who was boss. Tiddles was quite shocked at the name the instructor used for the horse. It wasn’t Buster, though it sounded quite similar.

But he enjoyed it nonetheless and was desperate to go again the following week.


Please may I leave the room?

I may not be here for long. Please excuse me if I leave in rather a hurry.
Best not to ask why.

When I rang the hospital last week to postpone my appointment for a month or so, feeling fairly blase about what is clearly just a little bit of IBS, I was rather taken aback to discover that the specialist had requested that I be fit in urgently. Bother.

Question is, which is worst, the fact that I am not allowed to eat for 24 hours, the fact that tomorrow I will not be allowed to drink for six hours, the fact that I am going to spend the next six hours and a further three hours tomorrow industriously completing The Puzzler and reading my… very thick… book…….. ?

What is definitely worst is trying to keep it all a secret from the Smudgelets and my father, while organising the delivering and fetching of each of the boys from their respective school trips tomorrow and Dad from his day at the hospice. Hmmm.. not easy. Just to add to the fun, the boys each need collecting at around 4pm from two different locations, I need collecting at between 3 and 4 pm from another location again, and Dad arrives home (and cannot be left alone) at 3.30! Hee hee… it’s not only me that’s going to be running!

Home at last

Well, I bet you were wondering just how long that adventure was going to last, weren’t you? Fear not, we are not still trapped on the London Eye, going round and round in never-decreasing circles… although sometimes it feels as though the latter part of that may well be true… but I simply haven’t had time to blog.. or at least, time when I have actually had a computer close at hand.

I tried to set up a wireless connection for my laptop actually, but seem to have achieved very little other than creating a self-destruct mechanism. Thus, whenever I plug the connection in and try to get the internet, it first informs me that I am picking up an excellent signal, then says that the website I am seeking is unobtainable, and finally locks on the little egg timer symbol and will do nothing ever again, including shutting down, until I let the battery run right out. Hmmm… not good. I need a whizzkid. Why is nothing ever simple?

So, how was our big adventure? It was absolutely WONDERFUL! He knew we were going on a picnic and that Uncle Dave was taking us to Ryde, but that was the limit of his expectations. It was fun sitting in the car and listening to him guess where we were going… and to see the range of his thinking suddenly expand big-time when we were dropped at the catamaran terminal. By this time he’d decided we were going to Portsmouth… so the thinking expanded another mammoth leap when we arrived there and, instead of heading for the exit, stayed and hung about on a platform at the train station instead. The entire carriage had the pleasure of his excitement which was without bounds as we got on the train and he realised we were going to London.

Something wild on the train

He was hoping to go on the London Eye, but I told him that the queues were immense and we probably wouldn’t have time to do that AND the British Museum in one day. As compensation we sat beneath it to eat our picnic and gaze in amazement at all around us. He was particularly taken with the number of different colour skins he could see as the Island has hardly become a home for many people of different ethnic backgrounds. We both decided we were country-mice at heart, mind, as we battled through the crowds and the traffic and queued for an eternity for tickets on the underground… and especially when the ticket allowed Smudgelet through the gate and then locked mummy on the other side with alarms going off left right and centre!

This looks wheely good!

We arrived, footsore already, at the British Museum which I warned him was the biggest building he’d ever been in. He was doubtful… until we got there. Oh, you should have seen his face! 😀

The British museum

I had been a bit dubious about taking him there as he’s one of those irritating children who races round museums and is hard to interest in anything except on his terms. The more interested you are, the less interested he tends to be. But the Egyptian display was, he said, the best thing ever – he so thoroughly enjoyed it and was wonderful company. He’d been doing the Egyptians at school, and as a teacher of general subjects when I started teaching it had been my favourite subject to teach, as well as being of great interest to me when learning linguistics, so we were both in our elements.


My son and his mummy

At the end of the afternoon he said “Mummy, I’m really tired, but do you think we might just have time to go on the London Eye before we go home? Could we go and look how long the queue is?”
“No, I don’t think so, Smudgelet. I don’t want to queue for ages, and it would be a bit of a waste of money.”
“Oh”.. my brave little man didn’t moan – quite an achievement for him.
“Besides, Smudgelet, I don’t really want to go on the London Eye this evening when it’s already booked for tomorrow”.

Wow – the reaction was overwhelming… and nicest of all was that his greatest source of enthusiasm was the thought that he was stopping overnight in a hotel room with me and without Tiddles… even more exciting than the prospect of the London Eye. The hotel was cheap (ish) and basic but gave us a good little room and a brilliant breakfast and the utter excitement of staying overnight in London. Wow! I was hugged and kissed and thanked and hugged some more by excitement personified. And then next morning off we went, to see the whole of London in 30 minutes. I was somewhat nervous – very happy to sit myself down on the seat in the middle and concentrate on looking out so that I couldn’t see any of the massive structure as we went. It was fine as long as I only looked at the view, so you’ll understand the pains I went to to get the following photo. I rather like it, though, as it’s a bit different to all the birds’ eye views of London that the rest of my camera’s memory was filled with.

Here we go

Did we have fun? You betcha!