Lovely Rachel Pattisson has popped in from her blog Really Rachel (Mummying. Her way) for a wee guest post. I commend to you her tales of life in the sticky bit of the toddler zone. Very funny.
Late, as usual. I strap EP into the pushchair and realise that FP (walking) will seriously slow me down unless I think of a plan.
“How about a ride?” I say. She agrees to a precarious perch on the so-called ‘parent tray’ – the place just below the handle-bar in which to stow change, cups of coffee and, as it happens, the occasional toddler.
The baby’s in and she’s off! A risky strategy with the toddler. We’ve never seen that before but it seems to be working. Well, they’re out of the driveway and moving fast…
It’s a bumpy ride. No-one can truly appreciate the bone-shaking nature of footpaths until they have ridden in, or pushed a wheeled-chair of some sort.
She nods. “You can never be sure,” she says, which sounds rather philosophical for someone who is not yet three. “There may be not,” she adds. Unfortunately, I don’t have time to pursue the matter. We have to get to the museum by 11am.
Wheelie bins. It’s one of those universal laws: Whenever you’re in a hurry with a pushchair, it’ll be bin day. The refuse collectors will have just been, leaving all the bins in the middle of the footpath.
Into the slalom now, she’s looking flustered but she’s keeping tight hold of the toddler. Just look at the steering on that pushchair…
“You can never be sure! There may be not,” FP tells me again. I have No Idea what she means.
“Ok,” I say. “Curb! Hold on tight!”
That was a precipitous drop. I wouldn’t be surprised to see a wheel or two come loose after a curb like that, taken at speed. Still, she’s handling the pushchair well and she’s across the road…
If I run, we might just make it. And by ‘make it’ I mean our friend might still be waiting for us when we finally arrive. She has a baby, she’ll understand.
When I’d made the arrangement to meet up, I’d planned to use the car. I had not envisaged this combination of public transport and Olympic pram-pushing.
My husband was working away. We’d discussed it. Since I would need the car more than he would, I would keep the car. He would go by train. It was a great plan. But although he did, kindly, leave me the car, he did not leave me the car keys.
So, I am sprinting along, trying to work out the quickest route and totally overlooking my daughter’s early attempts at deep-thinking.
“You can never be sure there may be not,” she says, again. I’m still baffled. But more importantly, here’s a hill.
No, not just a hill. A near-vertical climb, wending its way up into the clouds. Well, ok, not the actual clouds but near enough. And the museum is at the top.
I take a deep breath and begin the climb.
“Sing, mummy!” said FP.
“Sing! You can never be sure there may be not…”
“Letters through your door, mummy, sing it!”
Then I understand. FP is not philosophising. No. She is singing. And I am expected to join in.
She’s into the final stage of the race now: the uphill struggle, with an interesting twist. Competitors are required to sing the theme to Postman Pat as they make this challenging climb…
It’s KNOCK, FP. “You can never be sure, there’ll be Knock! Ring! Letters through your door.”