Dot writes: I spent rather a lot of yesterday sitting in the Motor Tax office at Nutgrove shopping centre, waiting to swap my British license for an Irish one. They have one of those ticketing systems where you take a number, compare it with the number on the screen, do a rough calculation based on how many staff they have and how long each transaction is taking, and then burst into tears. After 45 minutes of feeding Hugh rice cakes to keep him quiet (to do him justice he was extremely patient and good) I thought to check through my form, whereupon I discovered I hadn’t filled in my PPS number (Irish equivalent of National Insurance number), and I didn’t have a record of it with me, and nor did I have my phone with which I might ring Ken, who was working at home, and ask him to look it up. So I went all the way home and all the way back, this time without Hugh, and queued for another 30 minutes. (It’s also about twenty-five minutes each way to drive from our place to Nutgrove). I haven’t got the new license yet – it should come through the post next week – but when it arrives it will be a great weight off my mind. I moved to Ireland a few months after we got married, without having been organised enough to change the name on my license first. The new license will be in my married name. Moreover, the address on my old license wasn’t even the Scottish one but still the York one (shame on me). So I’ve been driving on a license from the wrong country that shows the wrong name and the wrong address. Strangely, our insurers seem completely unworried about this. But it was worrying me.
Regular readers will have seen lots of pictures of Ken carrying Hugh on his front in a Baby Bjorn, despite the fact it’s designed for little lolling newborns and not great 24-pound 10-month-olds. Yesterday our fabulous new back-carrier arrived. It is a Bush Baby Lite, for those who note such things. When I had returned from my second 45-minute session at Nutgrove and had a restorative cup of tea we took it for a walk up Killiney Hill.
At the top we let Hugh out for a little crawl on the grass while we hastily flung previously-unobserved cigarette butts and beer-bottle-tops out of his reach. It was a beautiful late afternoon and two paragliders had launched themselves from the hill.