Buses Trains and Balls

Apologies for the lack of activity here over the last couple of weeks. Real Life ™ has intervened. Half term was the apocalyptic event that stalled creativity. I work from home so I look after the children. I can’t complain as that was the idea behind the arrangement and I do love being with them and being able to be so involved with them as they grow up. However as anyone who does it knows, it takes a lot of effort. My daughter, thirteen going on twenty one, is not so difficult to entertain or engage these days. She is rapidly developing her own life which involves minimal fatherly input as long as finance and transport are taken care of. We still talk but she chooses the down time from her hectic social schedule to do this and fortunately this tends to be late in the evening.

My son on the other hand is seven and is still (I am delighted to say) at the stage when Dad is great and fun to play with, although I have on several occasions been told that various television programmes are not suitable for me and I should leave the room whilst he watches them. As the main driver for this appears to be a slight feeling of embarrassment at being seven and still liking Peppa Pig I am happy to indulge (and yes it is still tuned to PP when I enter unannounced on a confidence check). It’s not all about sticking him in front of tv however, tempting though that may be. Walks, kicking a football, rugby or soccer, about, running around a field playing some bizarre variant of cops and robbers, bus rides and, still the best, train rides occupy a large part of school breaks. While we do this we talk about all the things that occupy a seven year old boy’s attention; how old is the class 43 locomotive, why do the fields around the castle flood after rain, what are squirrels, are there lions in Wales, why do so many people crash lego trains on You Tube, what would happen if a car really stopped on a level crossing, why doesn’t mummy take the train to work any more, how do you get more than half way on the monkey bars and will his sister ever give up watching X Factor and stop boring him?

(38 years-1975, the brook isn’t big enough to take away all the water, fast and annoying, only rugby playing ones, don’t know- I blame Jeremy Clarkson, very bad things, she needs a car for house calls, practice, never – in that order)

I get loads of good ideas for stories, articles and plays as we walk, talk and run, but for the life of me at midnight after making dinner for the family, listening to my wife’s day, getting my son to bed and listening to my daughter’s plans for world domination I’m stuffed if I can remember any of them. As I drift off to sleep some of them pop into my head and I half heartedly think I’ll just scribble that down before I go unconscious. I rarely do though. Tiredness and experience tell me it will probably wait. Whilst I will forget most, many will in any event resurface unbidden as I sit at a keyboard.  On the occasions when I have grabbed a pen and notepaper either the scribble is indecipherable or I wish it had been, as the idea that was brilliant in my half unconscious state proves to be ever so slightly less than perfect in the cold light of morning.

My excuses have now dried up however. Children back at school, wife at work, cat fed and snoring. Lots of writing to catch up on. See ya!

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