Story Blog

Codine's off for the moment, but if you haven't read 'Turning Stones' it's still up there - free read!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

A week? A whole week? Where the hell does the time go. I really never thought I'd be saying this about the summer holidays, but they're flying past. Half way through already.

Early part of last week was mindless and relaxing. Lara's getting much better at her maths work... provided Grandfather Moose is there to invigilate. (Grandfather Moose is a large hand-puppet, in case there's anyone out there who doesn't know.) He has a penchant for gaping, calling for rum, and simply falling asleep if she gets things wrong or does them too slowly – on the other hand he gives deep 'moooose' bellows and nods approvingly if she does well. Remarkable what a difference it make. Also sobering to think that one is, as a parent, less motivating than a hand-puppet. Mind you, in the last few days we've quite abandoned work again... it's getting a bit sporadic.

It was her intensive swimming lesson week, and she improved dramatically. Not only in the swimming itself, but she got enough confidence to see that she really did get better and faster, so now (miracle of miracles) she actually WANTS to practice! Today is grey and now it's drizzling, but she asked to go down to the Baths and leaped into the deep declaring: 'I want to practice my swimming!' She proceeded to do little laps up and down, up and down, putting her head in nicely and practising her 'big arms' for crawl. She did a little bit of warm up and then ten of these mini-laps. Even by the end of the set she'd increased her speed and stroke-length, and decreased breath-rate from four breaths per lap to three. Damn, if I had those kinds of results you'd never hear the end of it. Jolly damn good. She's got her regular swimming lesson slot at 4 today and is looking forward to that, too.

The real excitement came at the camping trip at the weekend. We did consider going on Friday, after her last swimming lesson... and then abandoned the idea. Very glad we did because even though I'd put most of the big stuff into the car already the night before, it seemed to take forever to get all the bits and pieces together on the Saturday. I think we eventually set off at about 10:30 – hardly an early start. We headed up to the Wattigan mountains, a total of about an hour and three quarters inland... a lot of that spent crawling along unmade up roads. We promptly re-christened them the 'Wattingers', after the counterpart family to the Pontipines from 'The Night Garden' (this will be completely lost on anyone without very young children to entertain, but does involve Derek Jacobi in probably the most questionable narrative role of his career).

…. I've barely started on this, but it's getting late and we've got to go out – plus I know that not posting for a while makes some people edgy so I'll just pop it up and finish it off in the evening. Talk laters :)

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