Monday, 29 March 2010

Once bitten, twice shy...

While Mrs Rational (often confused with Mrs No-Nonsense, her close ally and confidante) would advise Springgirl to focus on her large reading list - coaching screeds, positive pyschology tomes, "The Girl Who Played with Fire" - the Escapee is very excited that Springgirl took the plunge, began the blog and now has two followers. This show of support and interest has buoyed Springgirl's spirits measurably. 

Mrs Rational is sulking in the kitchen over the dishes with Mrs No-Nonsense who is sweeping the floor. The floor could always do with more sweeping, it has to be said. Meanwhile, the Escapee is stretched out on the sofa with a nice cup of tea and the latest "House and Garden", luxuriating in the glow of success she always feels during those "I told you so" moments. 

So where will Springgirl go with this now? The critics seem to be losing ground in the battle for her heart and mind. Will they take the opportunity to devise a new offensive while they attend to the domestic preoccupations they savour? They can be heard muttering things like: "keep it in perspective Springgirl, this is not paying the bills". Churlish pair, those two.

Shall we see what will unfold:

I have been rather vexed these last few days by a succession of large bites - almost welts - on Son Number 1's neck and legs and on Middle Son's arms. Son Number 1 has a tendency to find all forms of malady extremely discomfiting and worthy of endless attention and anxiety, so naturally he drew the bites to his teacher's attention. She approached me at pick-up today to show me the latest additions to the collection - they appeared during morning break apparently and Miss T said that Son Number 1 was rather uncomfortable. I knew of them already, as the first thing he uttered on greeting me was - "I have three more bites. Look!" 

I have had a range of spider, mosquito, sandfly, midge and ant bites. I have also suffered from wasp, bee and blue bottle stings. Basically, where I come from if it's not  a red-back spider or a box jellyfish everything should be fine. I suspected, perhaps naively, that my sons' bites came from insects or their larvae emerging in the communal garden in which they play. "Stay out of the shrubbery," I suggested.

Miss T was concerned that the bites were those of bed bugs or fleas. I gather she knows both from personal experience. When I said they are not exposed to any small animals and I very much doubt they are bed bugs, she elaborated that she grew up in the country. Before I could stop myself I replied "I would have guessed you grew up in the country." The Barbour coats, the posh voice, the sense that one could very easily be in an episode of "All Creatures Great and Small" or about to be recruited to join the Land Girls circa 1943 are just some of the reasons. Admittedly, one makes all sorts of snap judgements and relies on first impressions often without foundation, but in the case of Miss T one is confronted with a veritable poster girl for the Young CWA.

She seemed to find my remark humorous, much to my relief.

I am in actual fact a huge fan of the countryside. I love all things green and pastoral and stamp around in my wellies in glee through many a muddy field, over stiles, past hedgerows, up hill and through icy streams, in quest of the peace, serenity and cream teas so abundant in the English landscape. So I certainly intended no offence.

I must admit to feeling decidedly itchy now though...

Note to self: call the exterminator.

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