“Karen!!! I’m in CGulls. Surrounded by 40 screaming kids and Rory won’t leave because he’s playing with a truck. Plus, I think he needs his nappy changed. This is a nightmare”
“He’s just poked a boy in the eye for touching his truck. It’s carnage in here Karen. CARNAGE I TELL YOU!”
“CODE RED. I REPEAT . CODE RED.”
“Update. My jeans zip has broken and I’ve had to leave the children’s cafe because the Mum’s were laughing at me. I’ve then tried to get a train from Troon to Barassie because I can’t follow my original plan of going to the park, clearly not a good idea with my penis on show, only to fly by the station at 70mph and end up in Irvine. Turns out the train doesn’t stop in Barassie. When I get to Irvine I get off the train and the pram falls down the gap in between the train and the track. So, there I am, with my jeans hanging off, trying to rescue our son from certain death and all because you want to make a point. Hope you’re proud of yourself Karen.”
These were the actually messages I received on Friday before midday. All I wanted was two hours. TWO HOURS to volunteer at a local group. And here I was excusing myself from the room and hissing into the phone “why don’t you just buy a safety pin and crack on with your day?”
I think my last question just tipped him over the edge so I thought it best I step in and put a stop to this circus of a morning!
I gave a brief outline of the turn of events and headed to the station to pick the boys up. I’ve never seen them both look so relieved to see me!
“What shall we do today?” Simon asks. He asks this same question every Saturday. We rarely have anything organised in advance. 17 months is an awkward age. Not a baby, but not really into planned activities as yet. Basically, pretty unimpressed with most of the things we do. Except running around the park. He loves that always. “Let’s go to Millport! Your friends took their toddlers in those buggy things attached to bikes. Yes, let’s do that.” I had my reservations but it made a change from the park. So an hour later we were on the ferry. The girls had told me where to hire the bikes and buggies from so we hopped on the bus and arrived at the shop. We were given bikes and a little buggy to pop Rory in. This is where it all starts to fall apart. He did not like his mode of transport at all. People were sipping their morning coffee and watching on as I tried to wedge Rory in to the buggy shrieking “It’ll be so much fun darling. Just let me pop you in the seat an then we will be off.” “Mamaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa” Rory screams in my face whist shaking his head. I fish out a stale rich tea biscuit from my bad and the lady from the shop comes out with some bubbles (the kids kind, not a glass of prosecco more’s the pity). It gives me a second to fasten him in, pull down the shield and Simon sets off in front pulling Rory behind him. Rory realises what we have done. He is furious. The first 2 miles of the cycle are a shambles. Rory is screaming in a high pitched voice, trying to launch the remainder of his rich tea out the buggy in disgust. I’m smiling and nodding to people who stare after the toddler equivalent of a mobile air horn. Simon pulls over, just as he’s stopped crying. I’m screaming, “why the fuck are you stopping just as he’s stopped crying? KEEP MOVING” And then I see Simon’s face. He’s scarlet. “Seriously Karen, he’s too heavy. And all the bags are in there too. You’ll need to carry some stuff on your bike. This is ridiculous”. After some redistribution of weight we headed off. After 15 minutes he pulls over again. “Oh God, what now?” “I think something’s wrong” Says Simon. “He doesn’t look right. Check on him”. I have a look. “He’s asleep. He’s just slumped forward because the thingy can’t recline. He’ll be fine”. “No, I think he’s passed out. Maybe it’s the excitement. Make sure he’s o.k?” I go in to adjust him back a little and he wakes up. Screams in my face and so it continues. Admittedly it did get easier after the first half of the journey. He stopped crying, we had a picnic, the boys played in the sand, and it didn’t rain! I’d definitely do it again as long as the weather was kind. Back to the park next week though. Think it’s time for one of those warm outdoor splash suits though. Brrrrrrrrrr .