Over the last thirty-six hours while Wifey has been swanning off down south giving a lecture, I’ve been the epitome of modern masculinity.
The house is clean. The dishes are all spotless. The stack of ironing as tall as a Bengali is gone.
Some of it (my clothes admittedly) has even been put away. I have to bow to a woman’s touch with the rest now that Things I & II are well on their way to being fully grown. Thing I borrows Wifey’s clothes while I (ahem) borrow Thing II’s. He wears cooler clothes than me and mine are mostly those which were packed away in the UK six years ago and weren’t even cool or in good condition then. Honestly, I’d love to be the ‘suave well-dressed writer’ type but I’m more likely to be the ‘mistaken-for-a-beggar’ type instead.
I’ve also practised Jazz piano, Sax, Guitar and plenty of Sitar to the extent that I notice just a smidgen of improvement in all of them. For me, of course, that means being able to honk more than five notes on the sax without passing out, get through a guitar jam without my back going, play at least four bars of a Jazz piece on the piano without going ‘oops‘ and finishing on the Sitar without peeling my fingers away from the razor-sharp strings crying ‘mother of God, the agony!‘
I really need to practise more often – as a professional musician it’s embarrassing.
Emails have been checked, blogs read, social media topped up. The machine is well oiled and Twitter isn’t getting bored.
I’ve even exercised. After the hell of running what felt like an army in-the-field exercise through Leicester and Birmingham last Saturday with heavy case (at least 70 kg if not more 😉 ) I decided to leave running and the cycle machine this week and concentrate on the upper body. I’ve made progress.
Again, that has to be qualified. It means when doing my sit-ups my neck hasn’t screamed at me and dislocated itself in protest. My stomach looks good though. A blogging friend commented on her blog recently that I’m skinny. This may be true, but my stomach belongs to that of a fat man. I look pregnant at times and that’s not an attractive look. Well, that’s gone now. To celebrate I think I should go drink some beer. Yes, that would be perfect…
I remembered to pick the kids up from school – Thing II still phoned me just to make sure; he didn’t think I’d remember. Git.
I got them both through their homework (a mammoth task when they don’t get home from school until nearly 5:30 and there is more than an hour of homework every night including weekends) and I made us all dinner. Admittedly, I banned the kids from talking to me while cooking because I can’t multi-task and still burnt the roast potatoes in end but at least the food was edible over all and the kids didn’t go to bed with faces like they were extras straight out of Oliver Twist.
Lastly, I dealt with our first all-evening power cut!
It was fun at first – reminded us of being back in Bangladesh. I even joked I was waiting for the generator to kick in. But I expected the electricity to be restored fairly quickly.
Not only that but signal on the mobile phones was all but gone and we have no landline in St Bees. It was cold and foggy and I feared we were going to get pretty cold. Wifey, down south, had checked all the major power companies who assured us all that there were no power issues in this region at all. All in our imaginations then, I guess.
I bundled us all off to bed and at some point in the later evening the power finally came back. If we hadn’t noticed it by the lights blaring away, we could tell by the cacophony of burglar alarms going off all around the village. If you’re a thief living in Cumbria, a word to the wise – try the village next to St Bees. Clearly, there’s not a house around that isn’t alarmed in this place.
This morning we were all up in time, I made sure the kids ate, packed their school bags properly and were ready. In the end we were done thirty minutes earlier than usual. And to think I only had to set my alarm for 5 am instead of my usual 6:30 am to do it. Such a simple solution.
So I’ve just had lunch as I write this on a Friday afternoon and I’m looking forward to getting the kids home and fed before I get my chance for a break for freedom this evening. I’m going for a drink with that girl who wanted me naked recently (I hope she doesn’t any longer – I may cave in face-to-face) and a couple more old friends. I think that will finish of these last couple of days perfectly and be a just reward for my good efforts.
Except…wait a minute…what was I supposed to be doing again?
You know – that thing that supposedly earns you money.
Hmm…I knew there was something I’d forgotten…well I can’t do everything now can I?