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Thursday, November 3, 2011

mid term break

Mid term break. Here is how it was for me.

We always go to the Marathon. Always do a bit of cheering and “Keep going!”ing. My parents were joggers and it has been an annual thing for me since I was eleven. And this year it was an even bigger deal. My two best friend’s husbands were running, there was going to be free face painting at our local Centra and the day fell on Halloween, which meant the kids were in excited form from the start.

We got there as the 3.30 balloon went by. With so many people running I was surprised we even spotted Lorcan, but there he was, right on time and doing fine. Then we had about twenty minutes before Kevin was due so I agreed to find the face painter. There were four of them at a table on the footpath and about six people ahead of us in the queue. Every once in a while I tried to peer at the road to see if I could spot Kevin.  As time went by it became clear I was going to miss him but had promised the face paint, so I stayed put. Finally we were at the top of the queue and my six year old was on a stool explaining what colour dragon he wanted to be.

“Excuse me!” I looked up to see a very angry man beside me. “She was next!” He pushed past me, marched up to my son and told the face painter that it was not his turn. She acquiesced, the mans' daughter sat down and my little boy came meekly back to me. I said in a loud voice not to mind the very rude man. Then he came over again and continued saying forcefully that I had deliberately skipped the queue. I protested that I hadn’t and hadn’t even seen his daughter but there was no stopping him.  “Just because you didn’t see her doesn’t mean she wasn’t there!” he shouted and I finally realised that the best thing to do was not to argue.  As well as that I was painfully aware that all around me were other parents I half knew from school and now I was the mother involved in a loud fight about free face painting. So I shut up, we got the dragon done and I returned to the sidelines, shaking a bit.  

And needless to say I went over the whole thing hundreds of times in my head for the rest of the day.

In a desperate attempt to have an uninterrupted cup of tea, I put one boy on the Xbox, one in a highchair with a penguin bar and two giddy boys into the shower. Just as the kettle boiled I saw water dripping through the light fitting in the kitchen.

I went to a playground with my four kids plus one playmate. Met my friend, a lovely mum whose son has played with mine many times. To my great discomfort today he decided to ignore her son and play with his other friend. We had an extremely awkward chat while I gave him filthy looks, which he ignored.

Went to Tesco. Everyone behaved, mostly due to the three bags of cocktail sausages, (a euro each) three bread rolls (finished by the time we got to the checkout) and three cartons of strawberry milk (not sure about the price. At that stage I was way too frazzled to check). As we headed out to the car with the full trolley, my eight year old ran ahead and was the first to open his door. Smack, it hit the car beside us and I looked in to see a teenager sitting in the passenger seat. She looked at me and then back at her phone.  Figuring she was either texting her Mum to say their car had been damaged or texting her friends about boys, I prayed for the latter.  

While loading the boot I had a quick glance at her car. There was a noticeable scrape and he had definitely taken the paint off. I heaved a sigh. Why couldn’t one week pass without my having to face a moral dilemma? Although now I am not being completely honest. There was no dilemma. I threw the food into the boot, got my euro back for the trolley, jumped into the driver’s seat and put my foot on the accelerator.  
“Mummy!” came a horrified shout from the back seat “the car is moving and I don’t have a seatbelt on!”

Well, that’s tomorrow. I’m hoping for a quiet, uneventful day. A break. As it is after all, mid term break.

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