Hello again whoever you are. Frankly, I am surprised to find you here again, given the enormously long gap since my last post. In your position, I would have considered this a well and truly ex-blog, and have long since given up visiting it (with ever decreasing frequency) in the hope of finding something new to read.
But hey ho, whaddya know?! I unexpectedly find myself with a rare bit of time all to myself, and in the tried and tested style of a die-hard procrastinator, my thoughts have turned immediately from All The Things I Should Be Doing to Any Thing I Could Be Doing Instead. Which, it turns out, is this.
An awful lot and a lot of awful has happened since I last wrote a post. Simon’s father died in May, and although there were a lot of things I thought about writing at the time, The Moment also Passed. Suffice to say that reflecting upon Death and Transience has become a hobby of mine that seemingly most people do not wish to share.
Then my daughter’s short-lived marriage came to an end, and when all the Told-You-So-Dust had settled, she moved into our new Derby house “until she can get a place of her own”, along with her two delightful and demanding children, an overflowing chest of drawers, a room-full of boxes, and another room full of toys. And in September she returned to full time work as a talented-but-very-cross teacher, which means that I am now living full time in Derby and working full time as an unpaid-(but-I-love-you-very-much-Mummy)-child-minder, house-wife, taxi-driver, and middle-of-the-night-nanny.
Back in the Land of Peace and Quiet, all but three of our llamas have moved on to a new home in Brittany (Duc, Valentine and Ollie will be joining them shortly), Lonely Chicken has died, leaving just two survivors (only one of which is laying eggs), and Simon is in the process of getting the dogs and cats prepared for their imminent move to Derby. Which of course sounds a lot easier than it is, not least because, having worked carefully and slowly (and it must be said, ultimately successfully) on a cunning plan to overcome the major obstacle of the dogs’ utter refusal to GET IN THE BLOODY CAR, Simon discovered that Stubbs (yes- big, rufty-tufty, don’t-mess-with-me Stubbs) suffers Most Terribly from travel sickness. And – try as we might, with daily practice rides in the car to nearby places of Highly Desirable Excitement – he is incapable of going any more than a kilometer or (on a good/breakfast-free day) two, without hurling the entire contents of his capacious stomach all over the floors and walls of the Land Rover, and Rufus’s feet.
Not only is this discovery a fly in the ointment of our grand relocation plan; it is also a major downer on Simon’s latest dream of traveling the world (well, Europe) in a camper van, accompanied by His Faithful Hounds. If this vomitous hurdle proves to be insurmountable, Simon may have to think laterally, horizontally, and not in the slightest bit twisty-bumpily, and squeeze his nomadic inclinations into a slower, straighter more Stubbs-friendly form, such a canal boat. Come to think of it, the Canal-Boat-and-Two-Unruly-Big-Dogs Scenario simply oozes potential for entertaining blog postings from around the country, and the more I think about it, the more I am convinced it is The Way To Go.
Well, we shall see. In the meantime, Simon is about to invest our life savings in the necessaries to obtain pet passports and suitable traveling accommodation for the dogs and at least four of our six cats. How we will fit them all into the Not-Big-Enough-By-Far space of the Land Rover for a go-for-it twelve hour journey from the Allier to Derby is the question that is currently occupying our waking, and not-sleeping-very-well minds. Followed closely in mind-filling popularity by the question of how I will then fit two dogs, at least four cats and and a hermitized Simon, into a house full of noisy, unsleeping small children, and two noisy-gossipy women.
And, for various reasons related to the comings and goings of Simon’s daughters in Canada and London, there is a deadline for the occurrence of this impending coming-together of the two Very Important bits of my life. Which of course is why I am passing this one rare and beautiful child-free day in an Ecstasy of Procrastination, instead of getting on with the sorting-out-of-the-house that clearly needs to happen very soon. Ah Deadlines – how I love thee. Let me count the ways…