For to be free is not to merely cast off one's chains,
but to live in a way that respects and enhances the freedom of others.
- Nelson Mandela -

Monday, March 19, 2007

Mummy's here

My Mum is over from Holland. Being a bit of a singer herself, she’s come over for Myrna’s performances in the Carlisle Music Festival. And of course to see all of us, because she misses us big time. As we miss her.
Because she doesn’t like to travel alone, AL went over to Holland to pick her up and at the same time arrange her six week work placement in the summer, with the natural horsemanship riding school she used to go to. Eventhough she’s decided not to do the second year of her course she still wants to do this. Then, while she’s there in the summer, she’ll look for work. Her mind is made up now that she doesn’t want to do an other course or study, not here in England, nor in Holland. She’s totally fed up with ‘organised learning’ and much rather learns through working. I think it’s a choice that suits her perfectly and I’m sure she’ll be just fine.

When Mum is here she doesn’t want special treatment or any special trips organised, she just wants to go with the family flow. Well, this week it was a bit of a torrent. Apart from picking Mum and AL from the airport, we had two EO group meetings that we really wanted to go to, the usual French and drama classes, badminton, swimming, archery, an afternoon of cat kennel building and gardening at Mr D’s, Owens birds of prey centre day and LOTR sessions, singing lessons and extra rehearsals for Myrna, long and intense discussions with AL about her plans for the immediate future...

Never a dull moment, indeed. I would have liked to see more of the Music Festival, but there just wasn’t enough time. And besides, both Mum and I were absolutely exhausted at the end of each day, if only from all the chatting... So much catching up to do!

Although we’re quite used to having guests in the house, it effects the daily routine at the best of times. This week it seemed to completely disappear. For Myrna that’s not so much of a problem, but for Owen it can be. I made a genuine effort to keep him on track, but he very cleverly made himself invisible a lot of the time and managed to get away with a whole lot more screentime than we usually allow. The worst day was yesterday - Saturday - when Mum, Ken, Myrna and I went off to the Festival and had to leave Owen and AL home alone...

Normally when we go away for more than an hour I make a list of things for Owen to do, but this time I forgot all about it. So by the time we managed to drag ourselves home he’d had so much computer and television that an explosion was inevitable. After listening to singing in various degrees of loveliness, Owens bellowing was quite a change, though not altogether a welcome one. To avoid Mum having a heart attack I took Owen into our room; once he’s going there’s no stopping him until he’s got it all off his chest. He was so annoyed by AL ‘bossing him around all day’, but he's also slightly scared of her, so he hadn't dared to say anything. She’d probably suggested several times that he’d do something else, possibly not in the most kind and considerate way, and both of them were extremely distressed because they were woken up early - 10 a.m. - by barking and howling dogs and mad cats. Poor, poor children.

Just as well we’d had a lovely day, although I probably was at least as nervous as Myrna. Ken’s Mum had also come on the train from Newcastle to Carlisle and Myrna did wonderfully well, obliging her personal fanclub by obtaining a third, a second and a well deserved first prize! Both Grannies and me were crying our eyes out when she passionately sang “Part of Your World” from the Disney Classic “The Little Mermaid” and I’m sure even Ken’s eyes were red...

Tomorrow Mum’s going back to Holland. I’ll take her back to the airport and I’m sure we’ll be chatting all the way there. We’ll both happily go back to our much quieter homes and our own routines again. And at the same time we’ll miss each other tremendously.

Time to go to bed now, I’m typing with my eyes closed... Hopefully I’ll have more blogging time and energy next week!

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