Posted in comedy, Dating & Relationships, humour, women

How I Met My Husband – Whilst I Was On A Blind Date With Another Man

How I met my, now, ex-husband.

Having been on my own with my son for about 9 years I decided I’d give online dating a go. In those days, 2006, it wasn’t like Tinder, find a match and head out the door. Some men were happy to exchange multiple emails, followed up by lengthy phone calls until I decided I had sorted the wheat from the chaff. Some men weren’t, thought I was wasting their valuable dating time, but that helped me pop them onto the ‘wouldn’t touch with a barge pole’ pile.

I met my first date in a public place, in an area I felt happy there were enough people and escape routes should that become necessary. He turned up just putting out a fag, looking scruffier than his profile pic with earrings that there had been no mention of in our lengthy communications. Surprise surprise we dated for about 3 months. Never judge a book by its cover. I overlooked the fact he was in tens of thousands of pounds of debt (although that did strike him from the potential husband list) and that he had a tattoo of his daughter on his left breast. Most disconcerting. It was only when he stayed one weekend and couldn’t leave as he had been struck down with a serious case of man flu that I finally gave him the elbow. This was the result of finding out that he couldn’t go a few (extra) days without his weed!

The second fellow I had a few reservations about, but as I seemed to be hilariously funny in his eyes I couldn’t resist an evening of being that person. I met him in the same place as the last chap ( I wonder if the bouncers of the pub thought I was a lady of the night). I couldn’t have picked a busier environment to meet him as I’d forgotten it was a match day and Highbury was buzzing. I had an ace up my sleeve though, there was a pub that had a small garden/patio to the rear that no-one else seemed to know about.

We had just settled ourselves in the deserted garden when three chaps in football shirts piled in.  To be honest they looked a little old to be wearing football shirts, but as I said don’t judge a book by its cover (well, only in your head, never out loud). One of them was very drunk and they couldn’t have sat any nearer if they tried. Needless to say they joined in the conversation with us and somehow discovered we were on a blind, internet, date ( I say ‘somehow’, that’ll be me and my big mouth). So a jolly evening was had by all, some more than others.

I’m not sure, but I think when I stood up to leave is when it all went horribly wrong (ok, I am very sure).

  1. It is only when you stand up you realise you have been drinking like a football fan on a Saturday night
  2. It isn’t terribly ladylike to down your date’s leftover pint, even if you do try and suggest it’s wasteful and you’re helping the environment (How? I have no idea)
  3. If a man gives you his business card and says, “call me if it doesn’t work out”, when you’re on a date with someone else; DO NOT take it, put it in your bag and laugh all the way to the next pub.

You guessed it, I am guilty of all of the above. When we got outside the pub I could tell my date was none too pleased about what had just happened. The clue was when he said, “do you want me to go back in and have a word?”. I declined and hurried him along to the pub next to the tube station for one last drink (this is the point that if I went out more often I would know it was time to stop). We sat down before ordering drinks and I vaguely remember him almost right up in my face, I also vaguely remember that I may have been letting out a little spit when I was talking back to him. He went to the bar to get the drinks and that was the last I saw of him. I tried calling his mobile and it went straight to voicemail. The time eventually came when I realised he’d done a bunk. I went outside the pub and called the guy who’d given me his card to see if they were still about, he seemed nice, gentle and kind. He was on the train on his way home but we made a date for another time.

And that is how I met my (ex) husband.

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Posted in comedy, humour

How Being Funny Saved My Bacon – What It Felt Like To Be An English Immigrant In The United Kingdom

The best thing about turning 50 is the amount of comedy material that generously lands in my lap. I’ve finally found my calling in life. Making people laugh by taking the piss out of myself. All those foibles and idiosyncrasies that Father Nature (Oh come on, it couldn’t possibly be a woman, could it?) hands out by the bucket load.

I’ve been on a bit of a roll writing about the menopause, middle age spread and heightened anxiety. Although something occurred to me the other day, what if I get better? I overcame a challenge with flying colours recently and I thought that that’s one less thing to be funny about. I’ll come to that one another time, but take my word for it, it was momentous.

I know I’m a funny lady because my Mum told me so. And I see the fruits of my labour on the face of the person I’m talking to as it contorts into the kind of expression reserved for private appearances only. That’s when you know you ARE bloody funny.

As a child my family moved around a great deal. This was very hard for my brother and I. Always the new kids on the block. The first day of school was like groundhog day for us. I recall on one occasion praying at night that I would wake up paralysed so that I wouldn’t have to endure being the new girl again.

Northern Ireland (NI) 1978 was a very bad time to be an English resident. Everywhere we went there were slogans screaming ‘Brits Out’, even cut out of the high mounds of snow piled up on the sides of the roads. The people of NI wanted the British Army to leave; bombing was at a peak; cars left unattended were taken away and destroyed in controlled explosions; soldiers with big guns patrolled the streets and we were searched in every shop we entered. If we got lost in the wrong area we were right to be scared with our English Registration plate.

My parents finally changed our car registration when my Mother was the target of makeshift missiles as she drove along the Falls Road in Belfast when Bobby Sands, member of the Provisional Irish Republican Army died on hunger strike in HM Prison Maze in 1981.

So, there I was, Little Miss English thrown into the Lion’s Den. Not the fault of the children, they learned from their parents that we/I was the enemy. I was 13 years of age, I could forgive the children, but not the teachers. It didn’t matter that I was of Irish descent, I was from the country that as far as they were concerned had stolen their land; I was an alien, an unwelcome immigrant.

This is when the humour really started to kick in. Not easy, but a necessity to survive. It’s awfully hard to kick someone’s head in when you are laughing so hard you almost wet your pants. I was talented and skilled at impersonations and accents. I knew the words and songs to every advertisement on the television. I could do all the voices, and Cilla Black was my pièce de résistance. Being funny and smart saved me from years of bullying.

I was saved from being bullied by the children, but not the teachers. I was in a school play just before we were about to make the move back to England. I played a Belfast woman, my accent was spot on. The next day the maths teacher commended me on my performance, the same teacher that would make me answer questions with the number eight in the answer because it sounded SO FUNNY. He said, “it’s a shame you are leaving just as we’re getting used to you”.

I learned how to judge and cater to my audience to save my backside. This is something that will live with me forever. Survival. Even if I am cured, I will always find the funny in everything. Being funny overcomes shyness, anxiety, bullying and insecurities. Laughter really is the best medicine, and nothing feels greater than being the one that makes it all happen.

 

Posted in comedy, humour, women

Making Sunday A Fun Day – When You’re Billy No Mates

I found myself at a bit of a loose end on Sunday; I thought I should do something completely different (usually Sunday afternoon is spent in the pub). I would learn how to survive a Sunday on my own, not just survive but enjoy, without the pub. I pulled on my skin tight jeans, threw on my white blouse and scrunched my hair up into a messy bun (in my dreams, that’s the stuff Jilly Cooper is made of. Two hours of face painting and a comb over before I’m ready to pull on my high waisted jeans and a top long enough to hide my muffin top).

I walked with a jaunty step (still in chick lit mode) feeling determined and liberated. I planned  to pick up the Sunday papers and take myself for brunch. I had it set in my head which paper I would buy, but it appears the early bird catches the worm on Sunday mornings, how was I to know, I’d never taken flight before 2pm.  I was in a  bit of a quandary as I couldn’t possibly give money to the papers that fund hate. I didn’t want the local paper, if I read that I may well never feel safe enough to leave the house again. I chose one that I wasn’t sure if it did or didn’t fund hate. Had a fair idea it didn’t.

Feeling terribly cosmopolitan I pootled along to the cafe, newspaper at the ready. My cosmopolitan, liberated, jaunty mood subsided slightly as all the windows were steamed up. I panicked in case I walked in and there wasn’t a spare table, everyone would be looking at me. I would be awkward and clumsy and no longer the woman I had dreamed of being. I had no idea how important it was to be able to see through windows before entering a premises.

Good fortune shone down on me and I settled myself into a corner table with my back to the wall.  I always sit with my back to the wall if I can. Last Saturday I gave up my ‘back to the wall’ seat so a man who wanted to watch the rugby more than I did could have a better view. I discovered I had the right idea all along, people insist on touching your hair and stuff when you allow yourself to sit within arm’s reach of passers by. As another aside I did say to aforementioned man, “What the hell are you doing on your phone when I gave up my seat so you could get a better view!”.

I digress. I took out the magazine supplement, I thought that was the safest bet as it would be awfully inconvenient to gather up a sprawled out broadsheet when my decaf tea and veggie all day breakfast arrived. I observed the other patrons and made some notes. I was surrounded by young families and couples. I convinced myself that that didn’t make me jealous or lonely as:

  1. You could stay at home eating breakfast and staring at your phones.
  2. I’m an independent woman of age, happy with my own company.
  3. I don’t have to sit trying to make conversation until the food arrives.

Going out for brunch seems to be a ‘thing’ these days. I get embarrassed if I say I’ve been out for brunch. When I say ‘breakfast’ they look at the time and correct me, “don’t you mean brunch?” What is this fascination with joining two words to make a whole other new word. Brexit. Guesstimate. Brangelina. Chillax. The only good thing about it is the word that describes that process. Portmanteau, beautiful word. I was only there for Breakfast Lunch because I didn’t have any food in the fridge and I was too hungry to go shopping and then go home and prepare it.

I’m lucky really, despite my idiosyncrasies*, that I do have the confidence to walk into a bar or cafe on my own. A good job really, if I didn’t I could spend days never seeing or talking to another human being. The moral of my story, if there is one; don’t get stuck in a rut. Even if you do the same thing everyday, try and do it differently. You’d be surprised how something as simple as having a pot of tea instead of a  teabag in the mug can lift your spirits. Carpe Diem!

*a fairly nice way to describe someone who is frankly a bit odd with a bucketful of anxieties.

 

Posted in humour, women

Carry On Caravanning – The Highs And Lows Of Being Off Grid

February has arrived. It’s that month when you start to feel that  Christmas is really behind us now. Time to start thinking about the summer and where to go on holiday. Fed up of the short, cold, days we dream of the sun on our face and sand between our toes…..

A few years ago I decided to buy a caravan, a static caravan in a field, off grid, back to basics, at one with nature. This was going to be all our holidays from now on, weekends, bank holidays, you name it we would be there. The first night we slept there I was awake all night.

“Oh My God! We are in a caravan at the bottom of a field in the middle of nowhere!”

“Oh My God, what if one of us needs an ambulance in the night, it’s so dark out there, they’ll never find us!!!” (If you’ve read my other posts this whole needing the police, or an ambulance, during the night is a recurring theme).

I got out of bed to check my purse for the piece of paper with the address of where we were, and placed it next to my mobile phone. Suddenly the thought of that dark, star filled sky lost all of its romantic appeal. My imagination went into overdrive as I pictured masked invaders smashing through the door. Wouldn’t be hard, that flimsy coffin I was suffocating in was a pushover!

“What time does it get light?” I blubbered.

The next morning I sat outside in the sunshine, fag in one hand, tea in the other, my chin down to my feet. I finally plucked up the courage to say that I couldn’t possibly EVER sleep in that caravan again. Needless to say, after spending two grand on that hellhole, my pleas fell on very deaf ears as Mr Happy positioned himself, eyes closed and face up towards the sun,  the corner of his mouth twitching slightly as he became heady with pleasure.

A few alcohol induced comas helped me through the nights on that first trip as we got stuck in to ‘rebuilding’ the interior. I might add at this point Mr Happy did advise me against buying the caravan. I have tried to curb my impulses since. Once we had everything looking just the way I had imagined, transforming a 1980’s static into a vintage delight (as long as you were only looking at the inside) I started to feel more comfortable. We bought a solar panel that charged two batteries and a 12 volt television. I was a green wellied water collector that didn’t brave the shower block until the smell got so bad Mr Happy had to start spraying me with Mr Sheen. As dusk swept across the field we would watch the bats do their evening dance around our heads and we felt we could live like that forever. Yes, I did at times suggest it would be the greatest way to live (curbed that impulse).

I became so ‘relaxed’ about it all that one Friday I decided to drive down to the caravan ahead of Mr Happy. I would fetch the water in, open the curtains and windows and prepare for his evening arrival. I felt amazing, so grown up and independent (I HATE driving with a passion – see travelling with anxiety). I drove my car across the field down to the caravan to avoid running the gauntlet of rabid dogs, and would move it when I had a dog handling expert at my side later on (weren’t supposed to have cars at the vans).

Once the curtains were drawn I spied a man I hadn’t seen before staring across at me.

“Oh Shit. I’m in a caravan all alone at the bottom of a field with no one around to hear my screams!”

“Shit, shit, shit!”

I jumped in the car, left it in the car park and started walking to the nearest village. I didn’t drive, as like I said, I hate driving and I’d done my bit for the day. I was wearing new sandals. Oh my poor feet. I jumped (more jumping, mainly out of my skin) on a bus and headed into Rye. Once I’d exhausted the shops I went on a pub crawl, intermittently phoning Mr Happy to explain my dilemma and beg him to arrive soon. I ended up back in the village, and headed inside the pub to wait for him. During the 3 hours I waited for him I was sexually harassed by the local drunk who wanted to take me back to his caravan for a bit of How’s Your Father. After he had smoked his fifth joint I had no concerns about being able to fight him off.

This is merely a snapshot of an adventure that spanned two years. Yes, I endured it for two years. The highs outweighed the lows and I learned a lot about myself. All bad. Look out for Carry On Camping – Didn’t I Learn Anything From Caravanning!?

Posted in social media

If I See One More Post About Trump On Social Media – I Think I’ll Explode

I’m not writing about politics, I’m writing about humans; humans and bandwagons.

I’m mostly writing this because social media has been ruined for me, and many others like me. If I didn’t need it for work I would flounce off in a huff (for at least a week) and refuse to look at my timelines ever again. Of course not until I’d made a grandiose statement of my intentions on the book with the face; I would then sneak back in and hope that no-one notices my return to Messenger from Whatsapp, where I would undoubtedly have referred them.

I’ll start by making it quite clear I am not a supporter of Trump, I didn’t vote for him, because I live in England. That doesn’t mean to say I am ignorant to the knock on effect of what goes on in other countries. I’m not. But i don’t need to know every time Donald does a Trump, or how and why every individual hates him, personally, and wishes him dead. I grew sick of all the social media in the build up to the election, and I naively thought it would all end when the new President was elected.  Oh how wrong was I.

So, back to humans and bandwagons. Let’s start with Melania Trump and that video that went viral of her looking crestfallen after Donny turned round and said ‘something’ at the inauguration.

lisa2

That one brief insight into their relationship had people campaigning on social media to Save Melania from the evil tyrant. Now correct me if I’m wrong but I’m pretty sure theirs wasn’t an arranged marriage. Which leads me to hazard a guess that they dated for a while first. Which leads me to assume she already knew what a total twat he is. A twat with a big wallet who will one day rule the world. What’s not to like? Secondly, how do we not know that Mel was looking forward to a big roast dinner that night and Donny said, “looks like this is going  on  longer than I thought. It’ll have to be a takeaway tonight I’m afraid my darling”. Quite possible.

I’ve been taken quite by surprise at the strength of feeling in this country about Old Donny at the helm in the USofA. During his election campaign he said he was going to do a lot of stuff that we think is really bad. The Americans still voted him into office. In their country. And we (I use the term loosely as I didn’t step foot outside the house on Monday) have taken to the streets in our thousands to protest over the decisions he is making. Can you imagine if countries around the world were doing the same in response to our referendum to BREXIT? We would become keyboard warriors in defence of our country, our democracy, our choices.

Yes, there are humanitarian issues, without a doubt. But as far as I know he hasn’t actually killed anyone yet. There are many, many other world leaders who have a catalogue of atrocities  committed against their own people. The dictatorships, the infringement of civil rights. Where are their memes? Why aren’t we out marching for those people. In those countries? In 2011 following the ‘Arab Spring’ President Bashar al-Assad, responded to the peaceful protests in Syria by killing hundreds of demonstrators and imprisoning many more, that was only the beginning.  All the articles about Aleppo, the photos of the tortured, war ravaged, faces of the babes in arms have disappeared from our screens. It’s not gone away. They still need us.

I read the news every day. I know what is being said about Donny, I don’t need it plastering my timeline every other post. It’s like I’ve been transported to a desert Island with only one book that I have to read over, and over again until I’m rescued. Katie Hopkins is loving it though, Old Donny is keeping her in enough acid to prop her career up for at least another four years. By the way, if you type ‘how long’ into google the first entry in the drop down box is ‘How long US President term?’

This is my SOS from my desert Island. Please send me another book.

 

Posted in Dating & Relationships, women

When Valentine’s Day Doesn’t Get Your Heart Racing

Hand in hand St Valentine and Cupid (great image) contribute to this multi-million pound industry without even signing off on it. The names of a Saint and a God used to line the pockets of the fat cats, would they approve do you think?

At a time of year when we’re still vacuuming up the pine needles; the next onslaught of commercialised, materialistic, ‘invented’ celebration rears its ugly head. St. Valentine’s Day. Another 24 hours for the singletons to feel like social outcasts; or for those who choose to be on their own to keep justifying why they aren’t ‘looking’ for Mr/Mrs Right just now, if ever.

Again the shops are adorned with the trappings of expectation; as well as luring some in they serve as a reminder to others that an evening of ‘aloneness’ looms. For some this involves eating ice-cream straight from the tub; polishing off the last of the Baileys; weeping over Pride & Prejudice and dreaming of meeting our own Mr Darcy. Memories of my past. Nowadays I’d probably be joining an online chat for singles who laugh in the face of Valentine’s day (whilst eating ice-cream and drinking Baileys).

For others St Valentine’s Day is filled with the excitement of a possible proposal of marriage. I got engaged on Valentine’s Day when I was 23. Well, we chose to announce it on that Day having decided earlier to commit to each other; my boyfriend wanted to move back to London. Ok, I decided we had to be engaged if I was going to move away with him as I never wanted to move to London. Very romantic. It was an amazing day though, a dozen red roses (maybe it was 2, I don’t remember, I’m 50 now) sent to my place of work, balloons filled my car, so much fuss and attention bestowed on me. Lots of oooo’s and ahhhh’s as I showed off my £130 Ratners engagement ring.

There was a time when I bought into it all. When love was measured by the size of the card and flowers. I cried as girls at school clutched their wads of cards and spat the numbers at you asking “How many did you get?” In that mean, schoolgirl kind of way. And there was always one girl that you just knew had written cards to herself. I never stooped so low.

But now I am older, wiser, and a parent. I’m older and a parent anyway.  I’m not bitter or resentful, I do have a boyfriend (the engagement at 23 never got as far as a wedding) who will buy me a card, and something really obscure that after a couple of drinks I will question him over (one year it was Scratch Art?!!). I don’t mind if he doesn’t, probably would rather he didn’t. An article, posted 13th February 2015, in Psychology Today stresses the importance of ‘all year round’ love; as the expectations, comparisons and magnifications actually contribute to couples breaking up in the weeks before and after Valentine’s day. Expecting great romantic gestures; comparing what others have done, especially on Social Media; and the magnification of flaws in your existing relationship.

If you are in a relationship and all, or some, of the above apply to you here is how you can avoid the pitfalls:

  • Don’t let one silly day of the year put your relationship under a magnifying glass. Work on it as much as you can all year round.
  • Read the article in Psychology Today for some tips on reigniting the passion you once felt for each other.
  • Be realistic. Life gets in the way of love sometimes. It can’t be hearts and flowers every day.
  • Don’t believe everything you see and read on Social Media.

If you are single and Valentine’s Day makes you feel lonely; it doesn’t matter which day of the year you fall in love or go on a date. You are not a social outcast, you just haven’t found anyone good enough for you yet. Learn to love yourself first and the rest will come to you.

Happy Every Day, For The Rest Of Your Life

Posted in comedy, women

If Google Translate Took Over Your Online Profile – Dating Over The Age Of 50

Disclaimer

I am writing this for a friend; Any Resemblance to Actual Persons, Living or Dead, is Purely Coincidental

A friend of mine who has recently found herself single after 15 years of marriage is ready to take the next step

For the sake of argument let’s call her, anything other than her real name, Liz. Liz is 51 and filled with a truck load of insecurity; this is what her profile would look like if she was brave enough to be honest. After all, they all find out in the end.

 

You?

I am a recently separated 51 year old mum of 6, almost grown up, children. Yes, I know, I clearly started young; if you really want to know I’ll be a bloody grandma next month.

Physical Characteristics

I have bloodshot green eyes, wiry bleached blonde hair, a saggy tummy and boobs down to my knees, I did a lot of breastfeeding. I’m 5ft 8 inches tall but shrinking a bit now, mainly due to curvature of the spine that in the wrong clothes makes me look like the Hunchback of Notre Dame. My wiry hair is starting to come out in handfuls due to my underactive thyroid, but if I do a Trumpian comb over you’d hardly notice.

Greatest Achievements

Getting through the day without having a number 1 or number 2 accident. This is  due to my irritable bowel, and inability to sneeze without letting out a little wee as no-one actually explained what pelvic floor exercises really are. Lying on the floor and raising my legs didn’t cut the mustard. I do have tablets to hold off on the number 2’s but I don’t always remember to take them. I would consider remembering to take my tablets quite an achievement as well, the memory is going a little, I know, too young!

Biggest Fears

See Above

Lifestyle

Since my separation, after the initial shock and clothes shredding spree, I have learned to live my life alone. I threw all the razors in the bin, I am a liberated European woman with more hair under my arms and legs than anywhere else on my body. And I mean anywhere. I enjoy going to bed early and not having to put up with my beer bellied, unshaven, whisky breathed hubby pawing me. I’m peri-menopausal so not really interested in a physical relationship right now. Not to mention the enormous amount of effort it takes to clench my buttocks (just in case) and fake an orgasm; my COPD can be exacerbated by that kind of fast breathing. I have two different types of inhaler for that, but it’s just not worth the risk, you know.

Career and Financial Solvency

Thanks to my ‘children’ not being ‘children’ I’m not entitled to any maintenance. My lovely little job I did for pin money has now become my main source of income. I am really poor so DSS need not apply.

Looking For?

I’m looking for a man between 35 and 45 with a busy career that keeps him away from home for long periods of time. Tall, dark and handsome, big heart and even bigger wallet. Someone I can flirt with over the phone and on messenger but not have to see too often, The odd meal out, but home to our own abodes. Generous to a fault. Someone who wants to make sure I live comfortably but wants nothing in return.

Whoever said that 50 is the new 40 was having a laugh

Any Takers?

Posted in comedy

When You Choose To Spend New Year’s Eve Alone – Hit Or Miss?

When, on the last day of 2016, you realise that the biggest decision you have to make each day is whether to use the curling tongs or straighteners you know it’s time for change. I thought I’d already started to implement enough changes when my son left for Uni not to still find myself in this position. I have a notebook full of scribblings, ideas for blog posts, a journal of my 50th birthday holiday week, and funny one liners fed to me by my BF. Not to mention the makings of a piece of flash fiction and my notes for a new radio show. And yet here I am, still flailing at life. I woke up this morning, the first day of 2017, home alone. I decided to spend New Year’s Eve on my own. The son was away for a party and I told the BF in true Greta Garbo fashion “I want to be alone”.

Being on my own was supposed to free me to do whatever I pleased, when I pleased, and without having to please anyone else. Lounge around in my house clothes (I don’t own PJ’s, even though saying that I was lounging in them would have sounded much more romantic) watch chick flicks, drink beer, maybe read some chick lit or be productive, bring some of these scribblings and ideas together. In reality by the time I’d had a couple of beers and my son headed off at 8pm I was already wondering how I would stay awake long enough to do any of these things. I didn’t.

I spent half an hour thinking I was having a twitter conversation with Simon Pegg, not hard to believe he had nothing better to do on New Year’s Eve is it? I did have a twitter conversation with Simon Pegg, but it was the wrong one. Much to my embarrassment after I’d catalogued the chat in status updates on facebook and pm’d my son. I rapidly deleted the Facebook updates and ceased to chat with the 40 year old, lonely imposter. Had he nowhere else to be? Really? Ok, he wasn’t an imposter, I didn’t have my glasses on and the profile pic looked pretty professional in it’s haze. I know, I should have gone to Specsavers.

 

screenshot-2017-01-01-at-13-15-47

 

After catching up on Eastenders, real home alone tv viewing, I went to bed at 11pm with:

  • A beer (had to show willing)
  • The landline (just in case my son or the police needed me in the night)
  • Laptop (just in case the Real Simon Pegg, or any other celebs I have tweeted over the last couple of months, actually had the good manners to reply)
  • Bluetooth Speaker (so I could listen to the 3 hour New year’s Eve party mix on the radio, bed dancing?)

I turned the tv on with the volume down low, tried to find a subtitle button in the dark to no avail, and fell asleep before The Birdie Dance! My BF phoned, waking me, at midnight, to wish me a Happy New Year, tell me I was right that the Mrs Brown’s Boys episode was a repeat of the Christmas Day show, and to invite me to lunch at his Brother’s house on New Year’s Day. I declined the invitation after, yet again, commenting how they leave these things to the last minute in his family. And I told him I wasn’t planning on leaving the house for 2 days as I have so much to do… I will be letting my creativity flow not flail.

I, like so many others, have been tricked into thinking that we have to make the first day of the New Year really count for something. The New Year a new me. So at 9am on the first of January 2017 I relieved myself of that last beer I took upstairs and went back to bed and watched Come Dine With Me. That different enough for you? I was quite pleased when I finally got up that I had managed to be so Indie, what next? The world was my Oyster. Twitter flagged up Katie Hopkins on LBC, how better to start the new year than to listen to Katie Hopkins on the radio. Research purposes only of course. I laughed myself silly for 2 hours and then tweeted @KTHopkins, she didn’t even reply to be mean to me. [Insert sad smiley here]

 

screenshot-2017-01-01-at-12-47-26

 

The day is not over, I have absolved myself thus far by at least writing this. I can now curl up on the sofa and watch The Devil Wears Prada feeling moderately satisfied that I have ticked at least one thing off my list; before my son returns and sprawls his 6ft 4 hungover body on the sofa and asks for cuddles and scrambled eggs.

 

Posted in women

Reflections At (nearly)Fifty

In one week I will be 50 years old, half a century.Old! It’s not surprising then that I’m reflecting on my life right now. There is this sense that the occasion should be marked in some way, and I don’t mean a party. I’m not having one of those. All that money for a few hours with a load of people I haven’t seen since my 40th, when I could put that money to better use, a holiday. I’m so scared of getting old I feel I need to reflect (and discuss) my coming of age to exorcise some demons and convince myself it ain’t over ‘til the fat lady sings.

My first thoughts were at the weekend whilst I was waiting for my fry up at the local greasy spoon, I was looking out of the window at a happy family passing by and it got me thinking about Christmas amongst other things. How you see more families out together in the run up to Christmas and on the day itself. Then that got me thinking about how I’ve never experienced that lovely, family, togetherness. Single parent, only child. And then it hit me, I will never experience it. That ship has sailed.

I had never intended to only have one child, but there was a distinct lack of willing sperm donors for the next 20 years. As the hot flushes move in, my egg production moves out. Oh God, I am that woman ‘of a certain age’. Feel free to read my little meandering ‘A Day In The Life Of Mr & Mrs Flush – Surviving The Men-O-Pause’. No more babies for me. If I am being totally honest, as much as I would have liked that 15 years ago, I really am too lazy and selfish to do it all over again. I also enjoy a drink or two and have enough of a problem sleeping without a screaming baby needing my attention when I have social media to keep me company.

So, no more babies. What else? I won’t be winning Miss World or fulfilling my lifelong dream to be a star tennis player anytime soon. I think that particular ship never raised its sails on either of those as I barely picked up a tennis racket or wanted to be the winner of a beauty contest. I always held out for wishes making things come true, 49 years of blowing out candles on your birthday cake and wishing gets you bugger all. I was clearly always lazy!

What I do enjoy and look forward to the most about ageing is the kind of peace of mind that has come with it for me. My body image, my honesty, my ability to happily embrace so many things about who I am. And to be be able to say that some of the things I have inherited from my parents didn’t mess me up, they have made me a better person. I feel sorry for the younger me, the one before becoming a mother. So many unhappy years worrying about my weight, my looks, living in the past, forgetting to live in the moment. So now is the time to tell myself that, stop reflecting on the past, live in the moment and look forward.

There is so much to look forward to, my work as a mother isn’t done until the day I die. I will enjoy watching my son grow into the wonderful man he is already becoming. And being a grandmother will be awesome. The love for my baby’s babies will know no bounds. I hope to be the kind of gran I’ve been as a mother, but naughtier 😉

I recently picked up a children’s’ book called ‘Two bad Grans’ by Geraldine Durrant & Sarah Horne.

But then something happened

Which no one had planned.

Those naughty old ladies were turned into grans!

And handed their babies, in pink and in blue,

Those naughty old ladies knew what they must do.

They looked at each other, and both understood,

That when you’re a granny you have to be GOOD.

Mrs M said “A Gran must behave like a LADY!”

“And set an example,” agreed Mrs O’ Grady.

And do you know what made them naughty before they were good?

They never washed dishes,

They never baked pies,

Their knitting was awful,

They often told lies.

They were rude and revolting,

Said “Piffle!” and “Poo!”

And refused to do housework,

Or mend and make-do.

What? I think the pages have been put in the wrong order. If anyone else has a copy, check yours and let me know. I can say a lot more than “Piffle & Poo!” I have no plans to start baking and going to knitting classes. What message is this book sending out? They were NEVER ‘bad grans’ they behaved like that before they were grans, once the kids had left home and they finally got the house back for themselves. Nah. I’m not going to be a sweet old lady, no way. I Shall Wear Purple.