The world has gone back to normal today, and I am loving it. No stress about Christmas, no stress about New Year, no worrying if I’ve got enough chocolate oranges to see me through a nuclear winter. Everything is open again, and I know for some people that is awful, because it means they have had to go back to work, but I am truly, truly grateful to you all.
The children and I have done ordinary things today, like go to the post office, and the supermarket, but we have been delighted with ourselves. We have become a little stir crazy, and in desperate need of something normal to do. When I announced that I was taking down the Christmas tree today there was none of the usual waily waily that accompanies the decision. We are all glad to see the back of it.
In the midst of all our chores we treated ourselves to a huge bag of chips and went for a walk in the rain, eating chips and chattering away like magpies. We went round the local church yard. We love a good church yard. We read all the inscriptions, and worry about people who have no flowers, and give marks out of ten for headstones. We were particularly impressed with a double headstone for a man and his wife that had a gigantic carousel etched into the top of it, picked out in gold. We presume they worked a fairground, either that, or, as Oscar said, they were run over by one of the escaping horses.
The best name we found all afternoon was a Victorian gentleman whose family had a very fancy mausoleum, and who went by the title, Mr. Preston Mash Esquire.
They don’t make names like they used to, do they?
I’d like to be an Esq. But apparently girls cannot be Esq.s. I think this is very mean. We can’t even be Esquiresses. I might just start calling myself Mrs K. Boo Esq. anyway. Who will know in this day and age, except perhaps the Queen’s equerry, and I’m hardly likely to meet him/her in Aldi, am I?
Our church yard adventures kept us amused for ages, and we were plodding about long after the chips ran out. Which must have helped work a few of them off.
The only other excitement of the day was coming home to find out that the cat has taken on ownership of the CLD (TM). We walked in the door to find she had thrown up spectacularly all over the hall rug and the play room. She seemed quite sanguine about it.
We are used to it. She sometimes forgets that we aren’t going to throw her back in the ditch we found her in, and panic eats. Then she throws up. It happens about once every couple of months, so we put it down to the usual, are they going to throw me in the ditch with the Christmas tree thing?
Then, we had just finished dinner and she came to announce that her litter tray was dirty. She will not go outside to perform her ablutions, and she will not use a dirty litter tray, so when she has used it, she comes to inform us, in no uncertain terms that it needs to be cleaned.
I bowed to her will, only to find that she had blood in her pee, which was not at all the thing, and Jason and I ended up taking her on an emergency dash to the vet. We called them at ten past six. They shut their evening surgery at half past six. If we get there any later we pay out of hours fees, which are enough to make your hair curl.
Speed was of the essence.
We only live round the corner, so that’s not a problem. Catching her and putting her in the cat basket is. Especially when you share the cat basket with your mother, and you realise that she has current ownership of it, and she lives twenty minutes drive away.
In the end I bundled her into her favourite blanket and sat in the back of the car with her on my knee, praying that she would not turn the inside of the car into a furry wall of death, and Jason drove us gingerly to the vet.
I was anticipating catmageddon. I was pleasantly surprised by the fact that she was extremely chilled about the whole thing, and sat carefully in my arms, only moving so she could get a better look out of the window.
The vet lent us a spare cat basket to hold her in the waiting room, and we were in and out in twenty minutes with no damage to life or limb, human or feline.
It turns out that she has cystitis, which, according to the vet is usually a stress related complaint in cats.
We find this mildly hilarious, as the only things Derek usually gets stressed about are high winds and the sound of plastic bags. We are not sure what has caused this extra stress in her life.
It might be that the fledgeling stationery business she was running under the bookshelf has been discovered and has now gone into receivership, due to the fact that the children have reclaimed four pencils, one biro, a pen lid, and a rather chewed eraser.
It might be that she been out twice in the last two days, despite the weather, and has decided she has a chill on her kidneys, and because I cannot wrap her in red flannel and apply a hot bread poultice, she is fussing.
It might be that she’s just a bloody nuisance.