Monday 19 September 2011

Just another manic Monday

Wake up of own accord. Wonderful to meet the dawn, practically. Reason for this novelty is that by 9.30pm last night, thwarted in my mission to watch He’s Just Not That Into You due to Sky card choosing precise moment that film started to stop transmitting, I was falling asleep in bed over I Don’t Know How She Does It.

Upshot is a decent night’s sleep. Feeling moderately ahead of myself. It’s all one requires in life, really, feeling ahead of oneself instead of incessantly behind.

Descend the spiral stairs to a sparkling house, thanks to yesterday’s monthly clean. Return upstairs bringing Dusty breakfast in bed – her pills embedded in a ball of dogfood, resting royally on a Pukka Three Ginger teabag envelope salver. She opens her eyes, delicately takes the morsel, and goes back to sleep.

Turn attentions to Lily.

‘Oh Lily Rose Gr-a-a-ay!’ I sing. Not a stir.

‘Lily Rose Gra-a-a-ay!’ I sing again.

I jiggle the bed, which creaks alarmingly. Nothing. Bounce it up and down. Nothing. Pull back the covers. Nothing. Stroke her arm. Lift up her arm. Drop it. Nothing. Repeat.

‘Lily Gr-a-ay, come in please. Do you read me?’

A faint groan. Yes, we have a response!

‘Lily, darling. Don’t go back to sleep. We’ve got half an hour, time to have a delicious breakfast if you get up now.’

I go back down to the bathroom. By the time I ascend again, she’s gone back to sleep.

‘Come on darling,’ I say, jiggling her arm. ‘You’ve had a good sleep. Let’s get up now so we can have a nice breakfast and not have to eat it in the car.’

Another faint groan.

‘OK, darling, I’m going down now. I’m not going to call you again, OK? You’re on your own.’


Why do I fall for it every time? ‘Thou shalt not buy fruit out of season’ should be the eleventh commandment. Seduced by the half-price tag on the Tesco strawberries, which have never to my knowledge been full price, sucked in by the Any 2 for £3 sticker. Our delicious breakfast has grown little white furry hats over the weekend. I set about decapitating them, but the strawberries are brown all the way through. Grrrr.

Tesco strawberry shame
Buy any 2 for £3
Regret it later

I salvage what I can into two bowls and slice half a banana that I find nestling in its brown skin in the fridge. Lily appears and sits at the table.

I go to open the yogurt.

‘No!’ cries Lily, snatching it. ‘I need to christen it.’

She finishes peeling back the foil lid and draws a cross on the smooth white surface with her spoon.

‘I name this yogurt, Yogurt,’ I say drily.

‘No-o-o!’ she laughs. ‘I name this yogurt, Onken Set Natural Firm & Silky Biopot Yogurt!’

Yuk! The strawberries taste of garlic. I look accusingly at the chopping board, which I’m sure I washed up last night. 


On the way back from school, I stop by a wooden bridlepath sign. Dusty seemed a little better yesterday. Maybe she can manage a longer walk, especially if it’s on the flat. We set out across a field of dew-damp grass that soon penetrates my new ‘waterproof’ Nikes. I am just pondering this and the fur-capped strawberries when I realise Dusty isn’t with me. I turn to see her sway and then keel right over, legs in the air, like something out of a Monty Python sketch.

‘Good girl! Wait there!’ I call in soothing tones as I run back. As if she’s going to run off. She’s hidden in the long grass, so I’ve no idea whether I’ll find her alive or dead.

Alive, as it turns out. Lying the right way up now, and looking at me with her affronted expression. I squat with her for a while, stroking her damp head, and then stand up. Dusty’s up in a flash and trotting towards the car.

I suppose it was just a funny turn like my grandmother used to have. Like that Christmas when Dan heard a yelp and a thud in the middle of the night and found Grandma in the bath in her nightie. Oh God. Maybe losing our balance as well as our marbles runs in the family.

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