I did actually remember the clocks going to the right place for British summertime, before dropping off last night. Although I did, during a brief sunny sit in the garden yesterday, amuse my daughter with previous accounts of my attempts of seasonal time adjustments. She particularly liked my two hours early at work story from one Autumn in the mid eighties. Very early one morning, I had clip clopped along at half a gallop, in sky scraper heels to my office in the West End to be greeted by grinning bin men. I had been pleasantly surprised at the near empty rattling tube trains on the way there. I had to console myself on that particular morning with a trip to a greasy spoon around the corner and devour a builders breakfast alongside one of the dustmen who continued to tease me as I scoffed my way through it.
Mother's day for me this time around,happened early, as I am in the middle of the most delightful autoimmune flare. 'He' in his infinite red wine fuelled wisdom last night, felt that I would be too unwell today go out to his planned wild gig by the river, with my M.D's lunch thrown in. So insisted that we had a curry delivered last night in case it went wrong, he was right, so having celebrated early, there really is no need for any form of PMT self indulgent huff!
I knew the sort of chaos I was in for this morning, I had a very very bad night but slept in a little, but was awoken by loud and wild music, being thumped out from underneath my bedroom. I lurched down the banisters. The sun was shining, the cats were meowing for food and the chickens furious and still in their coop. 'He' was oblivious to all of those urgent creatures, and also my tea in bed, and was busily seated at the piano wearing only underpants, belting out his best tunes with flourish, with of course the obligatory accompanying male bellowing. All the doors and windows had been flung open, and I came across him, blissfully grinning and totally oblivious to anything else. Between you and me, he does not always even bother with those scanty garments first thing in the morning, I often do come across them, but often not about his person. Trails of wires, half mended accordions, mangled microphone stands, half put together drum kits, endless electric pianos and their collapsing stands, and his latest melodeon experiments covering any spare surfaces, he apparently was very very busy. Also the top of the wooden piano was up, and inserted inside yet another microphone, as if it was not all loud enough.
I am a tad sad not to be there with him at the gig, and also not to be playing muself, but a flare is a flare, and at least on the LDN, they are shorter than they were in terms of days and recovery. Last night to have had a a sit down fun meal that I did not make last night, other than the large compulsory salad, I feel thoroughly thought of.
I know also he will ring me later to give me snippets of dreadful things he has done, he saves up his worst stories for when I am ill in bed. This morning after the various pets and chickens had been pacified he did recount what he had done in London the other day. He and I are Ying and Yang over time keeping. His idea of getting ready is to do so, ten minutes after he or we are due to leave the premises. The last time I could not go with him, he was apparently muddling up song announcements and offering to perform 'The Winds of Barley'. I think 'Sting' might have a different title for that one!
The other day with his work beckoning in London, was no different, my attempts to calm his chaos were met with 'shoosh dear it will be fine' until I heard a predicted explosion of chaos announcing that the train 8 miles away was due to depart in 9 minutes. Luckily it was late and he did make it. He arrived in London with his folding bike and peddled off with his rucksack trying to open itself and burst it's own clips and straps, this distraction only adding to the fact that one section of the bike had not been clicked into place and the whole thing folded in on itself as he pedaled at some speed through traffic. Having fallen off and re configured his badly behaved bicycle, to save his rather bruised ego in front of clapping mainly female pedestrians, he then apparently mounted the adjacent kerb with some violence - perhaps feeling he was performing in some sort of urban circus scenario involving BMX antics, at this point he burst his front tyre with a loud bang.
Forlornly at this point, being fairly near the station he decided to admit defeat and catch the overland train for the last three miles. His next encounter was presuming that his Tesco club card would do as a London Oyster card, which set off various turnstile jobsworths. His loose change had left his trousers and rolled down drains with both incidents . Also his special bag of things containing wallets and vital paperwork was on the table at home with me. Part of his 'Shoosh dear, I can manage, thank you', plans for leaving etc. For a full 48 hours prior to these particular events he had announced to me periodically in quite stern but nevertheless unconvincing tones, that he was extremely busy and would be shut in his office to plan for his up and coming lectures and workshops, and indeed to write reports with urgently outstanding deadlines.
When I am presented with a husband giving off clues and signals I do get a touch of the Miss Marples and feel the need to conduct timely investigations at regular intervals. What I came across was a carefully shut office door, evidence of patchouli incense wafting from beneath it, and on entering his marked out male territory, an abundance of paperwork screwed into discarded tight balls, they had clearly been flung at the far wall. Completely ignored on his desk a mountain of totally sidelined reports. He was sitting in the middle of this typical and regular jumble sale, sporting giant headphones with his computers linked up to what appeared to be an electric piano. He was also blowing a tin whistle very hard and vitally, and putting in a base line to a new composition. About as far removed from his work as would be physically or intellectually possible.
However it is all in good contrast to my own saber toothed antics. We have sold our house and are getting ready with bated breath, paperwork permitted to move to what could only be described currently as a blot on the landscape, half the size of where we are, so in effect a building site. I shall be camping in the garden and acting as site manager, quantity surveyor and most importantly 'Mrs Doyle'! I have had several hissing and spitting conversations with builders who suck through their teeth and exhale violently when not chewing pencils and sacked the lot of them. One man and his friend will be helping and they are much better and understand the value of money and also my artistic whims, which are literally now about to be set in stone.
During this flare, I have when lying down been working out various giant up-cycling projects and how I can save every penny. The people buying our house, want to buy me with the house which is hilarious, they have one huge dog, a very active Siamese cat and three lovely children with huge eyes. I asked the three smallest members of the family if they knew of any children aged 2, 4 and 6 who could possibly look after my climbing frame, swing, slide and see saw for ever and ever as I had grown to large for them, this may have clinched things. I am however highly irritated with how a local supermarket has foiled my plans to stock pile their plastic delivery trays. For years I have collected them in before camping trips, you see two deep and 8 long in a nice 'L' shape with folded sleeping bags on top, makes a great sofa for my caravan awning when we go to festivals or just camping. And of course I pack all our stuff in them. I always give them back. However the last delivery man spotted my vast collection, which I was intending to use for the move, and said they were under new instructions not to let any customer keep any due to the new handles and new design, my plans have been ruined.
I do find it hilarious. (among st more alarming states of mind), that I am now moving to a house that I had previously told the local estate agent to demolish immediately. I am glad I had that second, third, fourth, fifth and yes sixth look! Here we go. It will take time and energy but I will be living less rurally, so easier for us all to access the things we need. Also I like a new project and various friends are going to help when I am not up to it. I am also delighted to have found that my double bed fits exactly with space into our outsize bell tent. I love camping, and it will give me a chance to get used to a new garden, and not to inhale brick dust and other worse things into naughty at times 'Lupusy' lungs.
My friend Dithers has also been ringing to fill me in on how hopefully her talented art career may take over from her office jobs. Her description of a recent attendance at a workshop, delivered by a very talented artist in terms of their marketing, but not what they produce was most hilarious, I was told that the artist in question was one of those ladies that had an Aga and far too many labradors and that her work was most irritating. Dithers will be hot footing it to East Anglia to supervise over planting of the new garden, as she does mainly paint flowers.
The buyers of our house turned up again during a frenzied hive of activity, I knew they were coming but had got the day wrong. So a clenched teeth moment as I hoped and prayed that the mouse that one of my cats had brought in, had stopped running around my sitting room and did not appear until they had gone. I spent a whole day and evening previously, chasing it red faced, with a child's fishing net. I never did catch it. All I needed was the sound track to Benny Hill. 'He' meanwhile the minute they arrived, went off and fried some eggs without the extractor fan on, and left them to blacken underneath, as I explained to the buyers it is vital to test the electric smoke alarms from time to time, and as they could see and hear, all were working most efficiently. They are younger than us but have a certain twinkle in their eyes whenever we talk to them.
I am sure the chickens have sensed change, they have taken to flying over the fence and coming with me to collect fresh water and scraps and then getting annoyed when I don't let them straight back in again. I had some pecked ankles the other day for being too slow. Also they have adopted a defiant wings on hips type persona indicating that they would prefer less left over roasted butternut squash and salad and could I go back to rice and peas and more down to earth food.
All my cupboard and turning out activities have activated him into action, he unfortunately discovered a bag I had secretly packed up months ago, of most inappropriate bad taste waistcoats which he is totally thrilled with, 'oh I wondered where these were dear etc' Today he left with wearing what could be described as fashion as an extreme art form on a windy day. The same applies to myself, I was overcome with joy to have found a totally still in it's wrapper from the early 90's lipstick, (aptly named, Twilight Teaser). One of my best friends in London, also was fond of the same shade, and as two ladies out being ourselves, (ahem cough) this was always liberally applied with usually successful results. It's alluring slightly shimmering mauvish shade, most becoming. However having re applied it the minute I came across it, I looked in the mirror and wondered if I had recently had some sort of coronary event, so not one for the up-cycling section.
I am sure over the coming weeks there will be many events and epic squabbles and goodbye parties to report, but we are only moving ten miles so all that is vital in life to us will be kept intact, certain treasured friends and neighbours will be around as frequently as ever, and one or two local specimens will be a thing of the past. I may even come to miss the woman with whitened knuckles and a uptight shade of aubergine who passes my various doors daily, bristling with annoyance, with steam coming out of her ears, with her car on maximum revs, but that is certainly another story.