Here we are after a week of glorious sunshine, where South Kensington got all continental with people eating outside with no coats on, milk-white English ankles (other shades of ankle are available) were tentatively exposed to the air for the first time in months, and garden centres positively hummed with aged mothers being wheeled out for tea and cake on Mother’s Day weekend. We have woken up today with mist, cloud and a miserable forecast for the week ahead. not to mention losing an hour’s sleep. Typical. This being Britain, someone even mentioned snow in a cheerfully doomladen sort of way.
I, of course, chose this morning to eschew my wetsuit for my weekly dip and swim in skins (aka my mermaid two-piece, before there is general alarm and despondency). One of last week’s swimmers mentioned that not wearing a suit meant no disconcerting wetsuit creep as the cold water seeps up from your ankles to your nethers and beyond, and since this is the hardest bit of cold water swimming I thought I’d give it a go. Also, the water was back in double figures (just) after the aforementioned week of glorious sunshine. I left my wetsuit at home just so I didn’t chicken out when I got to the crunch, and I’m glad I did – the water felt amazing, and it was much easier getting in. I didn’t stay in long and the afterdrop was surprising but a couple of hot cross buns and cups of hot chocolate did the trick nicely.
It was definitely the best way to start Mother’s Day. I have continued the good work by doing some laundry and being whinged at by Thing 1 as there was ‘NO food in the house, Mum, NOTHING’. Not being some terrible Victorian parent, dear reader, there was food in the house but she didn’t like any of it and couldn’t possibly eat it, and could she go and explore the freezer in case there were any overlooked peas stuck in the ice. My beloved’s preparation for MD this year was ‘It’s Mother’s Day tomorrow? Alexa? Announce: kids, it’s Mother’s Day tomorrow’ so I bought myself some Ferrero Rocher at the Co-op when I went to rectify the parlous famine occurring in my kitchen.
Thing 2 gave me a bag of American Hard Gums and Thing 3’s school made sure that all the kids had three daffodils tied with hairy string to hand over, but I do miss the days when they would come home from nursery or school clutching a card covered in pastel tissue paper and still damp PVA which we weren’t allowed to look at till Sunday. I still have the little sticker-covered yoghurt bottles filled with bouquets of tissue paper flowers on their pipe cleaner stalks – a bit faded now but still sweet. I sent my mum a planter with spring flowers (forgot the card though, sorry Mum) and suggested we took some flowers up to my Beloved’s mum’s grave (which was what reminded him of Mother’s Day). I expect she too still misses the days when we came home with sticky paper cards and wonky daffodils.
Happy Mother’s Day to all you mothers out there, and to all those aunties and friends who fill in when we need a helping hand. I’m sending you a virtual home made card, still sticky with PVA, and a handful of spring flowers tied with hairy string. You’re not sharing my Ferrero Rocher though.
See you next week, when I’ll be coming to you from (hopefully) sunny Northern Ireland – my godson celebrates his first communion and there are rumours of a bouncy castle.
The Mangle Street Murders – M.R.C. Kasasian
Gallows View/A Dedicated Man/A Necessary End – Peter Robinson
On the Bright Side: The New Secret Diary of Henrik Groen – Henrik Groen
Doctor Who: Tenth Doctor Novels vol 3 (Audible)