Well, it’s not too hard to guess really, I’m back.
Apologies for the interruption to service, but one of the, more suspect, joys of growing up is the fact that our parents also age, and sometimes they like to give us a fright. Fortunately for me, this is all it was, and my dad is now recovering well, though still stuck in hospital for a while, fighting off a nasty infection.
My dad’s illness meant that, for the first time in a long time, I was back in Leicester, where I grew up, for more than a short stay. Normally our trips down south are spent jetting about, trying to fit seeing everyone in, and not really having the time to do any nostalgic sightseeing. However this time was different. Firstly, for the majority of the time it was just me and the kids staying with my mum and stepdad, as J couldn’t come straight away, due to work. This in itself was strange, as when packing everything up in a hurry and just grabbing things I thought we might need, I felt like we were doing some sort of midnight flit. Secondly, whilst back at mum’s I had a bit of time to mooch about the town I grew up in, and show the kids where our house had been (it was pulled down to make way for a new housing estate to be built in the park behind), places I used to work, places I used to play, and we also found some old family photographs to prove to the children that I really was a little girl once (though the girl was adamant they were pictures of her) and that Nana wasn’t always as old as she is now.
The kids loved it, they were totally spoiled and loved all the attention, and I enjoyed the chance to not really have much to do, except my mum’s puzzle magazines and eating copious amounts of cream cakes. It’s done nothing for my waistline, but I feel a little bit like I’ve been spoiled too.
However, by the end of our stay I was starting to look forward to getting home and getting back to normality, the kids back into some semblance of a routine, and my diet back on track, and today we came back. The car journey was the usual pleasure of alternately being asked what road we were on, and being called “stupid” or an “idiot” (by the boy, not J). Oh the fun.
On getting back to the barn, the first thing that struck me was that spring is definitely in full swing now; the buds on the trees are all bursting, and the hedgerows are distinctly greener than they were when I left.
The garden is all still there, thankfully nothing has been ravaged by the Herdwicks, but unfortunately the grass on the veg patch is looking longer and lusher than it was. The chickens seemed pleased to see me, which is probably more to do with the fact that I am the provider of treats, than anything else, but still it’s nice to get a warm welcome, even if that involves the odd peck.
Tomorrow I’m hoping to get back out onto the garden, once the kitchen cupboards are restocked, as the seedlings are starting to look more like plants now and are almost ready for going into the ground. I also need to add more compost to the potatoes, as they have started pushing through whilst I’ve been away, and get some more seeds sown. And then there are bathrooms to clean, washing to be done, floors to mop and a family to feed. Normal service has definitely been resumed.