Wednesday, 20 October 2010


My daughters are in the bath. I listen to them counting, splashing, giggling, fighting over plastic toys. Today, I've redrafted pages of my book, picked up toys, dipped chips in ketchup and looked in Thesaurus to find synonyms for 'orange', I found words such as apricot and flame. I've read articles about strikes and talked about petrol shortage with friends and passersby. I've watched videos of almost riots and wondered at the French capacity to say 'No'. I've heard about cuts in the UK, about losing jobs and I've made cheese and marmite on toast. I've carried a trombone and comforted a tired man and listened to tales of survival. I've been tired, chirpy, giddy, silly, inspired and now I'm at the end of my day. I can hear my daughters talking about farts and tickling in the bath. That is the end of my day.

Monday, 18 October 2010


Today, I sorted through their clothes: pink T-shirts, odd white socks and third-hand cotton dresses decorated with green umbrellas. I unrolled blue plastic bags and put things aside for one child and packed another for a friend. We found new second-hand dresses. Treasures put aside for a rainy day; despite the fact that it was sunny. I folded a tiny floral blouse, bedecked with little red roses, into a neat square and wondered whether I would hold another baby in my arms, need miniature trousers and 1 month old tights. I sighed with my seven year old as we tried to hold on to all of our favourite things, our arms too small for the weight of everything. " But, I want to keep it Mummy" my seven year-old said. I explained that we couldn't keep all our old clothes because there wasn't enough space on the earth. We had to learn to share and to say 'goodbye'. I was understanding, harsh, slow and fast; the odd mixture of the mother that I am.