Wednesday, 5 March 2008

Time out

I have just had the most wonderful weekend in London with my mum.

I thought perhaps it might not go to plan when my daughter developed an extremely high temperature on Thursday night, so much so that her bed sheets were wet with sweat during the night. I decided that my husband would just have to be capable of looking after her, so I left him the medicine and instructions, NHS 24 phone number and their dates of birth, I knew he would remember their birthdays but thought perhaps when he was bombarded with personal questions about the children, he might not actually remember the year they were born. She was much better in the morning so this put my mind at rest and she got the day of school and came with us to collect my mum and take us to the train station. I though she might be deeply upset that I was leaving her, she wasn't!

We took the west coast from Glasgow to Euston station on a very nice Virgin train. The journey was very pleasant and relaxing and on time. We were met by my mum's friend who we were going to visit, she has moved to London to sheltered accommodation to be nearer her daughters and grandchildren, she gave us our Oyster cards and we set off on the underground. We stayed in a guest room in the sheltered accommodation.

On Saturday we went to Covent Gardens and spent time taking in the shops and the entertainment, it was like being abroad, the weather was great, the sun was spliting the sky and there was a fabulous atmosphere. We walked over the Hungerford bridge to see the London Eye, we didn't go on it, I just wanted to see it. There was loads going on - painted men, street dancers, men miming and we watched two young boys, possibly 15-16, of Chinese or similar origin doing 'keepy up' with a football, I stood and recorded them for the full 5 minutes on my phone as my son loves all these fancy moves and even gave them money, something that I never do. I took pictures along the way to show the kids, thinking all the time, how much they would enjoy themselves here, but at the same time enjoying the fact I didn't have to be responsible for them. Our last stop was Trafalgar Square, which was lovely and clean, there were tourists sitting on the lions having their photo's taken, the fountains, apart from some gravel in the bottom, were clear and working. In Glasgow the fountains don't work, the water is green and slimy and usually full of beer cans and the statue of The Duke of Wellington has a traffic cone on its head, although this is now part of it's history, every time the authorities remove the cone it is returned, so they have given up and decided it should remain part of the landmark. Perhaps that's why Nelson's Column is so high up, to keep the Glaswegians from crowning him with a police cone!

We spent the evening at home sipping wine, eating pizza and chatting, I have to say I did most of the chatting, after 2 glasses of wine and it was only Lambrusco, my tongue just wouldn't stop. It was a tiring day, all that fresh air, exercise and underground hoping, but thoroughly enjoyable.

On Sunday morning we walked to the local park, which was a laugh, my hips were sooooo sore, although I never sit down, I don't actually walk anywhere and the previous day had worked areas that quite clearly had not been worked for a while. We met with our friends daughter, who I grew up with as a cousin and her children who are 3 and 15 months, it was only for half an hour but it was too long a way to go and not meet with them.

We then made our way to King's Cross station for our return journey home via the east coast, there had been a freight train accident on the west coast, so our Nation Express train, with not so quite nice a toilet, was very busy, we got back to Glasgow at 8.36pm, on time and I was home for 9.30.

I have learned from this trip that public transport is not a problem and I should try using it more, I did not miss my kids as much as I thought I would, although I did speak to them every day. I did need the break. My mum, although good company, is a pain in the arse - she didn't have enough space, didn't have a shelf in the bathroom to put her glasses on, couldn't work without a routine and took much longer to get ready than me. I am much more adaptable than my mum. Taking 2 pensioners out for the day is worse than taking 2 children, simply because the children hear you and ignore you, the pensioners really just can't hear you and you spend the time, repeating your own or worse still the other pensioners conversation. My mum will go from now on, on her own. I dread the day when she is to old to go on her own and I have to start taking her! And finally I need to learn to work my phone as the 5 minutes I spend videoing 'the football boys' had not saved on my phone and I was deeply disappointed!

I though perhaps taking a trip away would change the children's behaviour - NOT. The hubby did iron the school uniforms, exactly what they needed for Monday and polished my son's shoes, I was quite impressed and happy that I polished my daughters shoes myself. And the house - it was as dirty as I had left it......


Maggie May said...

Glad you had a lovely time with your Mum. There's nothing like a trip to good old London, is there? Plenty to do & see.

She's like the wind said...

Hi Maggie May - it really was nice. It was my first trip there and I won't make it my last. x

Expatmum said...

So funny about your mum - but you'll be rewarded for your kindness in the hereafter. Just focus on that!

Anonymous said...

Really glad you had a good weekend, you deserved it. If you went the east coast, does that mean you went via Berwick Upon Tweed? If so, you would have passed my farm.

Crystal xx

She's like the wind said...

Expatmum - God love my mum, it's just the way she is and she can't help it, at least we had a laugh about it. It's funny when she knows what she's like, it'll worry me when she doesn't realise what she's like! x

CJ - We came back the east coast past Berwick Upon Tweed and I did look at most of the farms on both the east and the west coast, there were so many and they all had sheep. I did expect your Farm to scream out at me 'I'VE GOT A NEW KITCHEN, CJ LIVES HERE' but I'm so sorry it didn't and I had no idea where I was looking, I should have contacted you first! x