Tuesday, 26 August 2008

Staying with my mother

There are so many things I want to write. And I can't write any of them really because I don't have an internet connection. At present I'm at my sister's borrowing her computer. It is still another couple of weeks at least until we'll move into our new house. Staying with my mother is quite an experience. She doesn't actually have chickens in her kitchen but it's that kind of set up. The place where she lives is a beautiful but semi-derelict farm house at the foot of the Malvern Hills in Worcestershire. Water pours through the roof when it rains and nothing works. For years my mother didn't have mains water or central heating and she didn't have a kitchen - just a sink, a table and one round pin socket. Things have improved recently but not that much. The whole thing is still like a really badly organised camping holiday. The whole house is covered in dog hair. When you take your clothes off at night you find dog hair down your bra. My mother can't see anything odd about any of this. On good days, I love sharing her life but there are times when I really have to struggle to keep my temper. The upside is that it's paradise for my son. He brings in buckets of mud from the garden and spreads them all over the kitchen floor and my mother says, 'Lovely dear, do you want some water to mix it with.'

Thursday, 14 August 2008

Sons and daughters

We moved house. Currently we are not actually living anywhere. That is not as bad as it sounds except that everything I need is in a bag which is somewhere else ...... I'm typing this from an internet cafe. Today I heard someone repeat a saying which I had never heard before. It goes likes this: 'A son is a son until he takes a wife. A daughter is a daughter for all of her life.' That one hit me pretty hard. It's true, of course. A mother-daughter relationship is a special and unique relationship. I'm never going to have that and I'm lonely without it. I have my husband and my son but they're blokes and so there are some things that they just don't understand. But I'm defiant. Defiant. That's an important word for me right now. I want life, life, life. In spite of what has happened I want as much life as I can have. It won't end well. I'm running myself into the ground and I'll finish up ill. But until that moment comes I'm just enjoying the fact that I, at least, am alive.

Monday, 4 August 2008

Foxy the bike

Life should be absolutely terrible right now. It's four days until we leave this city. I'm packing all day, every day. It's physically exhausting and emotionally draining. Everyone I know is away on holiday - and even if they weren't I probably wouldn't see them. My husband is busy at work and says, 'It'll get done some how.' (I noticed that men say that often. It means, 'Some woman will do it.') So here I am alone in this half packed house. Whole swathes of my past have been carted away to the junk yard, and loads more will go. But the strange thing is that, on a minute by minute basis, I don't feel that bad. I don't really feel anything at all - but I don't mean that in a negative sense. I'm like somebody in a dream. Today I did have a moment when I lost my nerve. I should have taken my son's bike to the dump but I couldn't do it. My son has out grown the bike and it was always horrid anyway. My mother got it from a dump. It's black and orange - a combination of colours I particularly dislike. For some reason it has 'Foxy' painted on the cross bar so that's what we call it. My son and I have had some fun with Foxy. Last summer I taught him to ride without stabilisers and he's written miles and miles on that bike. And so when it came to taking Foxy to the junk market I couldn't do it ..... It's funny the odd things which tug at the heart strings, the bits of the past which refuse to be cut adrift.