Dot writes: at least Frank still has his old willy, that’s all I can say. On Tuesday his little operation (repeat of last year) was scheduled for Thursday, but then on Wednesday it was first moved to 7.15 in the morning and then cancelled. However, other things that have changed or are about to change include the car, which was traded in against a shiny 2006 Citroen Xsara Picasso on Thursday; Hugh, who started Big School on Thursday (this seems to be going fairly well); Ken, who departed for Edinburgh this morning; and the spare room, which from Monday will house a former student of mine who is going to be our au pair. It’s a lot for all of us to cope with, but we seem to be sustaining reasonable good cheer, possibly because we’ve been so insanely busy.
I am still the same myself, but tireder. I began the new Dot In Charge routine today by spending Saturday morning on housework, which confirmed (a) that I am slower at housework than anyone else in the known world; (b) that the tiled area in our kitchen/dining room is actually very big; (c) that it is a natural law that as soon as you have mopped a floor something will happen to make it dirty again, in this particular case Hugh getting out some newspapers to protect the table from his art activity and depositing a fine layer of soot all over the floor. The newspapers were in a rack in the fireplace, you see.* However, you will also notice that I have subtly slipped in a mention of another of the excellent and productive things we have done today, viz. the boys making monsters out of felt and glitter glue. It was rather hectic supervising it because I was trying to hang out washing at the same time. We also went to Killiney Hill Park and played in the playground and then visited friends, and there was a trip to the shop for milk and croissants, and an attempt to get the boys involved in cleaning up after dinner which entailed Hugh drowning the table in Dettol spray. No wonder I am so absolutely knackered. I’m not really up to this parenting lark.
An upside of the upheaval is a chance to appreciate how sweet the boys are, and how acceptingly they get on with things when their world is rearranged around them. Hugh understood that Daddy was going away (to Beer School, which he pronounces “Bear School”) and thrust a teddy bear upon Ken “to memory me with”. He has been pretty cheerful today and not more demanding than normal. I am not sure to what extent Frank realises what is going on. He is not searching for Ken, but when we got back from the southside and were about to go into our house he asked me if Daddy would be there. I suspect it may hit home for the boys when they start being picked up from school by neither Ken nor me but by our new au pair. But they are super little boys and I feel very proud of them for today. Let’s see what tomorrow brings.
*You may think the fireplace is a silly place to keep the newspaper rack. There is a chimney balloon blocking the chimney and in theory soot should not be able to fall down, but you are still probably right.