Ol' Red Eyes is back. Back on the screen. Now able once again to spend hours with her cyber life without having to fling up her arms and scream like Bela Lugosi. Yes, the rabid conjunctivitus is finally ebbing away. Just slightly pale pink albino bunny eyes now. The occasional dab of a hankie. Old prescription sun-glasses that slide off the face put away again until the next foolish notion. Or the next re-infection. Yes she's back. And this time, she's mascara-free. If the red swollen pus-dripping blistering blood-eyed gorgon didn't scare you, Madame SG without her lady-disguise will send you howling for mercy. Look away. Look away now or so help me you'll freeze-crack in sheer terror.
Really, the last non-family member to see me without my face is still being fed with a spoon. That was New Year's Day um..... 199something. Poor boy.
And then, we were setting off for a friend's last BBQ on English soil. This is my husband's most glamourous and gorgeous sexy female friend. I have a massive spot on the right of my nose and the left eye of Satan's grandmother. 'Oh don't worry what you look like. It's not a competition honey' he says. The stupidity of the male can still silence me. But not for very long. Just long enough for him to duck.
It wouldn't have been nearly so bad if on the way the pharmacist hadn't winced in disgust and slapped that antibiotic ointment in my leperous hand. She sneered at my self-healing efforts of salt water and honey and yoghurt and tea bags. OK the teabags weren't chamomile. Nettle and spearmint aren't as soothing as they could be but the wayward eyeball cream was ferocious. I felt the left hand side of my face swell like a beachball and started sobbing along to the ABBA CD in the car. It was supposed to be feel-good sing-a-long to get us in the mood for cheery black sausages under grey skies. But knowing me knowing you darling can't you hear me the winner takes it all ain't it sad.... It's all too true, too true and I can't keep it in! I make everyone wait when we arrive while I patch up the streaks in my face powder and balance the sun-glasses back on my snotty nose. I emerge from the back of the car like a star. Feel like a twat.
By the way it wasn't my car. That's been sheltering in the bosom of the garage for some time now. Pleading to the mechanics 'Don't send me back there! They're maniacs!' But we shall be reunited soon I hope. And I will promise to not wreck another gear box and clutch this year. I'm not sure how many more light-hearted yet begging phone calls to my mum I am allowed in this lifetime. Still we got a ride in Mr GPants' 'nice' car. Only grown-up rubbish in it. A rare treat. Then we can send the traumatised little courtesy Punto back to its family. Due to the skanky eyes it's had more rest than expected, albeit shivering in the rain under flaps of bubble wrap held on with bricks and a watering can. It's lack of action in effect set it up as a sitting duck. One shattered back windshield later...... That Thuglet has one hell of a golf swing, just needs to work on his aim.
On the subject of golf balls ..... Being drawn into this house of all things creepy, crawly and growly and clawy, I was glued to a programme last night about crocodilians. (Get me.) And they demonstrated their speed of attack through the water using a golf ball as the illustration. It's all in the rough skin. And the related dimples on a golf ball reduce the drag by a half in comparison to an equal sized smooth ball. My mind starts ticking..... Still haven't rigged up our stream-lining experiments. Must buy smooth balls for Thuglet Woods. Wonder how fast my arse could fly?
Anyway, for all my previous whingeing about having a proper 'summer holidays', I then found myself in quarantine after all, blindly unable to enjoy it. The agony and the ecstasy indeed. Driven into the ground. Me and the car. All that tidying effort and now look. Filth returns to taunt me. Still, found a few weeping moments to work on my little pap mach tree. If I can't bear the real outside sunlight (what little there was), and only peek through dirty windows at my flittle butterflies, I can shrink my mind to gazing at a 2' tree instead. And shrink. And think. Tree. Branch. Twig. Blip!
A couple of days later I find myself bullied into the Summer Slam - a 'fun' free family fling in the middle of a park I normally get to sit still in. I'm not really ready to be out. I seem to be barking rather that speaking. I don't understand why people have to have 'fun'. Or why we have to queue to have it. And be surrounded by other people's children having it. I want to go back to my self-controlled shrunken mind-womb. But on picking up my missing football star from his chum's that afternoon I am bolted into an air-punching back-flip. There I sit with a nice cup of tea amid rows of neatly stacked ironed and labelled school shirts. Ha haaah.... I think I can just pick up the scent of my missing mojo again. Alarm clocks, bus stops, lunch-boxes, PE kits...... All can float past us social pop-outs. Not for us non-tow-the-liners! Yes, I can definitely smell it. The warm familiar hum of smugness. It may not be a pleasant odour to anyone else, a bit like a boy and his own farts, but it's so very comforting to me. (Actually it may be related to not bundling the kids into the bath every Sunday night. Perhaps I'd better hose them down soon though. If only for the sake of the courtesy car.)
But it's not like they're avoiding water altogether. Gorilla boy has been checking his little tank of £12.99 birthday money Triops every 10 minutes since he set it up. Been well over a week now and naafink. However, outside in the abandoned blackened slime-store previously known as our paddling pool it is teeming with life. The mini biologists have been busy. I no longer have a single mixing bowl or measuring jug left in the kitchen but they have incubators and observation podules all set up. One even made it onto the kitchen counter when the Chief Supervising Ecologist was worried the torrential rain would overflow their outdoor laboratory. No nice short-lifed educational little pre-packed shrimp things then. Houseful of mosquito larvae instead. Thank you boys.
Despite my reservations I did have to scrawl a name into a couple of footbally things this week and was worried enough about Little Rock Godling being abandoned for 5 hours among actual humans. He'd wanted to join in with a special Goalkeeping Day where big bruv was already signed up for the usual Skills Course. Now I regularly deposit Gorilla Boy on muddy pitches all over the land with no real concern but his younger skinnier surreal scarecrow sib? What would nice people make of him? Daddy flung them both out of the car and skidded off as fast as he could before anyone could catch his eye. He came back early however to check out the experiment and discovered that all the kids on the goalkeeping gig were as bonkers and cloth-eared as our own dear little muppet. He said it was as if they had gathered together all the little retard boys that the other players had told to 'just go in goal'. So Little RG perfectly at home, bless him. No offense to goalkeepers. Or to retards. Or even to LRG. Obviously huge offense to everyone else but hey......
And while I was indisposed Mr GPants had to do the ice rink run too and here's more bad news: Minx says he's more embarrassing than me. How can this be? I practice and practice til I'm fit to drop - he just turns up once in a blue and it comes naturally. I dropped to my knees and asked her 'HOW? HOW????' 'Mum, he calls out "Jazz hands! Jazz hands darling!"' God, he's good.
So now I am back in the 'outside world'. Even done a supermarket cruise. With 3 sugar-magnet boys. Trial by packaging. It's funny what attracts children really. I don't usually even blink before refusing most aloft prize hopes. 'Do you want this Mummy?' from the smallest in a sweet tone made me look. Tena Lady Pants. Pants! I didn't even know they did pants. Well I never! I'm looking too long and thinking too much. Snap out of it! 'Oh.... no thank you darling. Not yet.' .....Wow, they do pants......
And next week the world and its offspring crank into uniformed drill once more. I'll be back in the fray myself - albeit more like paintball than actual war. Way more fun but still exhausting. And The X Factor is back on Saturday nights for the next 6 months. Here come the winds of change. Blow the whistle - over the top lads, over the top.
Summer! What happened? Where did it go? They've all gone up a shoe size and down a haircut size. And I don't seem to have anything to do with it. The sun comes up, the sun goes down. And they all get a bit more mouthy. And a bit less blond(e).
So, adding another layer, what have I learned this Summer Holiday?
Well..... Be careful what you wish for (again), pharmacists are the devil's agents, ABBA are all too deep, I am a crap driver, golf balls can be interesting, no school is well cool, goalkeepers are nature's outsiders, butterflies are life's breath, the house will very quickly return to its natural wild state and perhaps even eat me, ignoring the garden is ecologically rewarding, they do Tena Lady pants now, childhood really is as fleeting as all those nice older ladies in shops say, less really is more and my sunglasses still don't fit. Oh - and the pride in my one talent, being the Most Embarrassing Parent, has been squashed.
To sum up the way Life just keeps on balancing things out, I shall leave you with a profound discourse from 2 enlightened Wise Women (ie Me and Minx):
M I don't like feet.
MSG They are quite handy.
M But hands are not very feety.
And the leaves start to fall.......