Monday 13 October 2008

Olivers Army

The boy was away this weekend at his first cadet camp. Excitement had been high in the week running up to it, but that didn't mean that he thought to make sure that we had everything that was on his kit list. The net result was a last minute Friday night dash to Waitrose on the way to meet the prodigal uncle for a a celebratory meal at Buckhurst Hil's finest (and actually one of the UK's) Indian restaurants.

This gave me a free weekend. Personal space and time. Hurrah. So what wild things did I get up to? A salacious time at Brighton's seediest night clubs? The chance to catch up with much missed friends, or even family? A gorgeous meal at a great restaurant?

Erm, well no. I headed to Ikea (oh no, not again) to pick up a couple of things (actually, is it possible to ever get out of Ikea with a bill of less than £200...I've never ever achieved that, often picking up stuff that's really not really not needed). After that I headed down to the flat by the sea, achieving precisely nothing all least it was a warm and sunny time to do nothing very much on the coast.

I've been planning for when at some stage the boy would fly the was my target date (and as I've mentioned to him on one or two or several dozen occasions, when he leaves for higher education that is the time that I stop the real job, climb on the, as yet phantom motorcycle, and spread my own wings). And I've also known that as he heads through his teenage years, my role would increasingly be reduced to taxi driver and funds provider. But I hadn't really realised that at the tender age of 13, he would not be around all the time. So this is an unexpected bonus...but I need to change my mindset slightly, open up that little black book of mine and renew old well as gallop into a whole set of new ones. Hurrah!

After all I have no intention of spending my middle years watching endless repeats on TV, wearing a hole in the carpet in front of the sofa!


  1. Hello there. I used to live in Buckhurst Hill for a while. Pretty place. I was in a block called Glenmead, almost next door to the vets.

  2. Nature's designed things like this to smooth the tranistion from full to empty nest - you're right to prepare for the 'big' day (and so what if sometimes that means chillin' doin' nothin'?

  3. It's weird having the time isn't it ? Sometimes it is hard to fill but try and find a playmate, even us middle aged parents need to live it up once in a while, (says the woman who spent saturday night in her jammies watching bbc iplayer ! rock and roll baby !)

  4. French Fancy...I know exactly where you mean...we're at the top of the hill in Beech Lane. It is lovely...but I have a feeling you've moved somewhere just as glorious're right, but I find it challenging to be doing nothing (life's not a rehersal is too deeply embedded in my head!)

    AG...yes I crave for the time and then wonder what to do when I get it. Never satisfied eh? I want to go back to living it up every day...but suspect I couldn't keep up the pace now...

  5. How reassuring you don't intend to settle for a boring life once the sprog has flown (?) - I trust that means *not* emigrating to Spain boring everyone with how little you paid for your villa compared to what you sold your flat for and drinking yourself to death either?

    If so, bravo! Even volunteering for the church bazaar must be more rewarding than such squandered meaningless lives. I have this theory that in days of old ex-pats would be the very people to be transported, so they are now transporting themselves! I know there must be some nice ones, but they do seem thin on the ground.

  6. I found that my daughter seemed to develop more of a social life that did not involve me from about 14 onwards. She also went on bigger and more adventurous school trips that took her away from home for longer or did quite a lot of girlie sleepovers (not sure if boys are into that though - ie sleeping over at other boys' houses!!) So I think you are right to get out the little black book and start preparing for your freedom every now and again. Though I bet, it will seem strange without the little fella, after all these years.

  7. And what's wrong with sitting on the sofa watching repeats making a hole in the carpet? Works for me!

  8. But watch out when you get onto that not-so-phantom motorbike. They are very fast these days and many a not-so-young boy racer has been knocking at the pearly gates sooner than he intended!!

  9. Poet Laura-eate...the thought of fading away quietly is not one with any appeal!

    Rosiero - yes, the boy is already off to see friends as often as he can...keeps the house a little tidier!

    Millenium Housewife - ah naughty me -it was a reference to my Dad, who did that literally for twenty five years from the day he retired...I couldn't understand how such a dynamic person could do that and waste away the last third of his life...'re right....I'm practising on the Vespa until I'm ready to start challenging St Peter!


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