I’m writing this on my mother’s home computer.
This means two things:
1.) I may be discovered and
2.) I’m not sure if that is good or bad.
I mean, it’s not like anyone reads this blog due to the extreme veil of secrecy surrounding it.
Oh well. Today is my first official day of maternity leave, and with the emails coming thick and fast from work, with content such as “Milly burst into my classroom as I was speaking to another student, shouting “English is rubbish at Key Stage Three anyway!”” and “Lionel kept saying repeatedly “I ain’t doin’ no detention for this,” as I wrote the detention in his diary”* I have to say I’m missing it terribly. About as much as one misses the proverbial hole in the head.
Meanwhile, I have been concerning myself with annoying beaurocracy that would put the European Union to shame, courtesy of the NHS (apparently it’s not the done thing to be changing hospitals at 38 weeks, and everyone from hospital porters to the Health Minister is up in arms). It’s enough to make one want to dispense with hospitals entirely and give birth on their own, on a barge (I once read an article in the Guardian about a woman who had done exactly this. I think she lived on the barge though. In my case it might be a nightmare scrabbbling around at the last minute trying to find a canal and then an unlocked, unattended barge to sneak onto. To be honest it might actually be easier to stick with the original plan, i.e., hospital. Plus now I have a car seat they might let me out again). Yes, I have an actual car seat and, despite my pronouncements of frugality and enhortation to my family to purchase-and I quote-“the cheapest one that is actually safe”-as though car seats in baby shops might be divided into two sections marked “safe” and “unsafe” and then priced accordingly so that you would pay considerably less for the ones that would be completely ineffective in an accident scenario, my mother bought the most expensive one, i.e. the one I actually like. My brother has since been engaged in merry japes such as attaching it to the car, admiring it, taking it out of the car (my mother and I thought it might get stolen. My brother seemed to think that such things only happen “up North” for some reason, as though “Up North” was some sort of lawless rogue state, while Down South exists in a constant state of utopia) and attaching it to the pushchair, the latter of which took about two hours. I can now pretty much categorically guarantee that unlike my own mother in the eighties, I will not be a dab hand at running for the bus, tucking a toddler under one arm and folding a double buggy simultaneously. To be perfectly honest, I’m not sure I’ll even be able to remove the rain cover without assistance. Still, I have been told that these things are instinctive, right?
*Names have been changed to protect the guilty