I have come to the conclusion that I am sorely in need of a holiday.
It is the correct use of the word ‘need’. I do not want a holiday. Actually, the thought of packing and booking and faffing and organising and thinking about who will look after pets and whose permission I should ask for various types of absences, fills me with the horrors.
I do not know who once filled my head with the idea that a holiday should be a simple affair in which you could, in theory, take a credit card and an overnight bag and decide where you’re going in the blink of an eye, but it is an enduring dream.
I have never been on a holiday like that. I have never met anyone else who has been on a holiday like that, but this is the sort of holiday I aspire to. This, I think to myself, as I pack seventeen pairs of children’s pants into the corner of an already overstuffed suitcase, while a child neatly unfills it from the other end, and I erroneously tick another thing off my ever spooling list of doom, is what a real holiday would be like.
Would it? Is it? Have any of you ever done such a thing? Was it marvellous?
Actually, maybe don’t tell me. I will only be sad for myself if it is as marvellous as I suspect, as the prospect of such a holiday flickers on the edge of impossible/never.
I ‘need’ a holiday because I am even crankier, more impatient and generally up sticks with humanity than I have been for a while. Six weeks of kow towing to a school regime, exams, auditions, recitals and recalcitrant pets, alongside various domestic uproars will do that to a person. I have very little bandwidth for human error, especially my own.
My own errors include having to go to the supermarket three times in one day, just because I cannot remember a list, or even a basic string of simple objects for more than three seconds without it falling out of my brain; trying to pay for petrol with my leisure centre swimming card; driving past three petrol stations thinking ‘I must get petrol,’ and then sailing straight past them; grating all the skin off one knuckle, mistaking my own finger for cheese etc…
This adds to:
being absolutely sick to the back teeth of the fact that Tallulah could not find the cheese slice this morning, even though it was sitting on the chopping board awaiting the slicing of her cheese, and she had walked past it twice.
It was sitting on top of the bread board because last week I caught her chopping up lumps of cheese with my lethally sharp Japanese kitchen knife directly onto the work surfaces, and had decided I needed to perhaps prepare things before she attempted anything else quite so guaranteed to send me into apoplexy, so that the morning could run slightly smoother.
I was deranged by the fact that she also got a new bottle of sparkling water out, even though there was one, already opened, right by her breakfast place setting, because setting the table every morning to avoid four of us all using the same small kitchen work space is another of the things that I do to try and make mornings go more smoothly.
I was rendered speechless by the fact that Tilly thought maybe that her physics exam might over run to such an extent that it would stop me taking Tallulah out at seven o’clock tomorrow evening.
I was dismayed by the fact that Tallulah has exhibited another set of strange behaviours around setting her alarm clock, despite being repeatedly reminded of how to set her alarm clock.
I was bewildered by the fact that when I asked Oscar to get his swimming things together, for today is swimming day at school, that he came downstairs twirling a pair of swimming shorts on one finger and asked ‘why’ he needed them?
Indeed yes? And why not a towel, or goggles, or a swimming hat to go with the casually twirled shorts?
Things did not improve when I arrived dutifully at school to accompany a trip to a local mosque, something I had promised to do weeks ago, when I found out that the trip had been cancelled last week, and somehow the message to tell me this had failed to be delivered.
Let us not go into the shenanigins at the local swimming pool this lunch time where people who were merely chatting, tutted at me repeatedly when I actually dared to try and swim, and were so obstructive that I actually got out of the swimming pool half an hour early to avoid having to murder them in cold blood.
Nor the fact that when asked to help put the washing out this afternoon, not one single child could remember how to hang up a shirt, or a towel, or any item of clothing at all, despite the fact that I do at least two loads of laundry a day and it is one of their jobs to help me.
Perhaps I just need a holiday from today. I won’t even need a credit card and an overnight bag for that.
I suspect I need a holiday from myself. That’s a little trickier to arrange.