I wrote this blog post a couple of weeks before Christmas, whilst this blog was still in its gestation period (i.e. whilst I was waiting for a young person to help!).
Last week was one of those week’s where calamity simply followed calamity; I was beginning to wonder when it was going to end!
On Thursday I took Alfie for his morning walk. As we were walking back up the snicket from the main road to our estate (AKA the lemony snicket), I stood in something substantial which resulted in me doing the splits. I surmised that it was either a lump of mud or a dog egg; I resolved to check later.
On arriving home, I stood outside my door and started to remove my boots. Why I did the next unnecessary act i don’t really know, as I always keep my boots outside the front door in any event. I decided to check what I had stood in, through the only way I know, by smelling the sole of my boot. The problem was that i misjudged the distance between the sole of my boot and the lower half of my face. Yes, that’s right, the lower half of my face, not just my nose. The result was horrific; I had stood in what I thought I’d stood in, and now my lips, chin and nose were covered in it! Ignoring the urge to vomit, with lips pursed outwards in an open mouthed trout-pout, I hurriedly climbed the stairs to wash my face and rinse with mouthwash, repeatedly! The thought of it still leaves me feeling queasy.
Anybody for a Christmas kiss?! Thought not!
On Friday, after taking the dog on his morning walk, I found myself stood at the front door once again. After taking Alfie off his lead, the previous days’ events fresh in my mind (and nostrils), I carefully removed my boots. As usual, I opened the door, encouraged Alfie to “Get in”, switched the alarm off, put the lead down, took my coat, hat and gloves off, and put my stick behind the door. I went into the kitchen and checked my work phone to make sure no-one had tried to call me as work was extremely busy, and went to switch the kettle on. At this point, I sensed Alfie looking at me. “Bloody hell, you need feeding don’t you” I said as I rushed into the utility room to put his food in his bowl. “Go on then, get stuck in” I said, but he didn’t. “What’s matter, not hungry?” I asked. Such behaviour had become fairly regular, especially since he has become more ill with his heart problems. “Oh well, be like that. You’ll get poorly you daft sod, but I can’t make you eat” I explained.
As I strode out of the utility room a thought, spoken aloud, struck me; “I bet you want a drink don’t you, and I bet you haven’t got any water have you?” I checked; his bowl was empty. “Bloody hell Alfie, those flaming kids, they’re rubbish aren’t they”. I filled his water. “Go on then, have a drink. No? Come on have a drink you’ll feel better. Come on, there’s a good dog. No, oh well, it’s your own fault if you get ill you daft little fecker. You’ve no-one to blame but yourself”. I left the utility room, telling him to get into his bed, and I continued to rant at him all the way back to my laptop on the kitchen table. I intermittently tried to encourage him to eat, but all to no avail.
After working for about 20 minutes, there was a knock at the door. “Who the bloody hell is this Alf? I bet it’s more Amazon for R. You get back in your bed you little bugger, I’m not having you getting under my feet”. I opened the door.
“Hiya mate, is this your dog? I’ve found him wondering around the streets”.
“Erm”, my mind was spinning. “I don’t think so, my dog’s in the kitchen” I said, my brow seriously ruffled.
“Oh, it says his name is Alfie and it’s got this address on his collar” said the man. I stood transfixed. I was sure Alfie was in the kitchen.
But the man was right! Alfie gave an unmistakeable nervous shake of his head and snorted. “Sorry mate, I’m blind and I’ve been talking to him and trying to get him to eat his food for ages, obviously without success!”.
“Right” he said slowly. “Bye” he said remarkably quickly, as he shot off, eager to escape the madness!!
I can only conclude that Alfie had wondered off amidst the standard mayhem which is my entry into the house!
Later that evening, R and a few friends put up the Christmas decorations in the lounge. A few drinks and a Chinese take-away were enjoyed by the girls, and then R and one of the friends went “Up town”. Meanwhile, J was putting-up the exterior illuminations and I was banished to the garage gym.
After doing half an hour on the cross-trainer, I bent down to pick up my pint of water and head butted the brick wall, right on a corner, cutting my forehead. I was greeted by J as I exited the garage.
“Dad, it looks really f***ing tacky” said J, describing the lights with genuine pride!! “That cut looks quite deep” he said as an after-thought. I wasn’t bothered, it didn’t hurt, which made a nice change.
Saturday morning began as many had before, and no doubt many will in the future; Frazier on C4 whilst laid in bed, then downstairs to put the Morning Line and the kettle on. After doing the latter, I entered the lounge to switch the telly on. The TV controls were not on my armchair. As I searched for them, I knocked over a half-full bottle of Lambrini. Luckily, I caught it, but it still made me rant. After emptying it and putting it in the recycling, I returned to the search. I immediately knocked over an empty glass, and after adopting a much slower gentler search methodology, I found several more glasses with varying degrees of contents. “F***ing kids, they treat this house like a b***ard hotel” I ranted. “It’s just not good enough, things are going to change around here” and many similar sentiments were directed upstairs to the sleeping culprit.
Several cups of tea later, I was much calmer. As I sat in my armchair looking at my horse racing bets, I heard footsteps coming downstairs. Confusingly, the front door opened, and then closed, and then opened and closed again, and then the footsteps came down the corridor to the lounge.
“Morning” I said in a monotone voice.
“Morning” came back a most croaky voice.
“Good night was it then” I said in a “You deserve all the pain that you get for leaving this room as you did” kind of way.
“Yeah” came a sheepish voice.
“Right! You left this room like an absolute sh*t hole. You know the rules; all party stuff is to be put away before I get up so that I don’t knock it over” I said rather aggressively.
“Ok” said an even more sheepish voice, although she didn’t really seem that interested in stopping to listen to me and continued looking for whatever it was that she was looking for.
“It’s not a hotel you know. This carpet cost a sh*t load of money and I don’t want it ruined by you ungrateful little sods”. My anger was starting to rise again; I was really getting into my stride now.
“What?” The sheepish voice was a little unsure now.
I wasn’t quite sure what I detected in her voice. “Don’t give me that. I’m not asking much, just put the bloody bottles and glasses away before you go to bed. It’s hardly f***ing rocket science! How many times have I had this conversation with you?”
“Erm …. erm …. I …erm” was the response.
A thought suddenly hit me; “You’re not R are you?!”
“No, I’m not” was the response which slightly preceded a rapid reddening of my face.
“Bloody hell …. I thought you were R.” I put my head in my hands. As the footsteps disappeared off down the corridor I mustered a half-hearted “Well you’d best get yourself upstairs and tell her what I’ve just told you””
I later found out that it was R’s friend simply coming round to pick up her bag which she had left the previous night. The poor girl! Still, it might have an effect the next time they have a party!