Picnicgate

Everyone has been going on and oooonnn about Liborgate for the past few days – and rightly so! A proper scandal. At work I dared to comment that perhaps Bob, while certainly culpable, was being used as a scapegoat – “the unacceptable face of banking” – really? – The English do love to burn a witch. Case in point – Wimbledon is on at the moment. Andy Murray is a British HERO today, but god help him if he loses in the semi-finals tomorrow. Then he will be persona non grata and well and truly Scottish. My (Australian) boss wishes he was English and plays the part well – “Bob was the CEO – he DESERVES it! He’s GUILTY GUILTY GUILTY! Of course he should have resigned!!” Um… angry much? I take issue with the blame game. Things are rarely so cut and dry…

… apart from the case of picnicgate. Cut maybe, but not dry.
I love my brother-in-law. He’s one of my favourite people actually. He’s laid back, funny, smart, a worthy husband to my wonderful sister and a great Dad to my amazing little nieces. But the dude is too English. It’s not his fault – he IS English.

Setting the scene:
I spent most of the past weekend at Mark and Britt’s house, babysitting the two beauties on Saturday evening while their parents had a date night. It was far less traumatic than I envisioned thankfully! Both kiddies played, ate and bathed with no fuss – bath and reading time was fun, and sleep time… was a little more complicated but very entertaining (Aeryn just grinned at me from her cot – even half an hour later when I checked on her – the bubby was grinning from ear to ear. It took epic strength not to giggle and hold her hands while doing a happy dance. Anais! She’s a ridiculously bright four and a half year old and tells the most incredible stories to delay bed time. I’m savvy, but I’m transfixed by her tales. She’s an artist. I think it was I who held up lights-out by listening to the madam and wondering at the beauty of her imagination).

Cue Sunday.
I am woken up by a giggling blonde cherub, and almost immediately a spring-clean ensues to get the house ready for a viewing.  M & B are selling their house as a precursor to moving back to SA (silent anguished scream). I have the lucky task of playing with the kiddies while M & B clean, which mainly involves jumping on the trampoline. Did that all rhyme? So far so good.

Then the great British Summer set in. Our plan was to go for a picnic while the viewings ensued. The problem – the heavens opened as the car pulled up to Virginia Water (a gorgeous rustic woodland area near Windsor, perfect for long walks and picnics alike… when the sky is dry).  Britt – a bona fide child of the sun, curled her lip and pronounced that a visit to Spur (burger type restaurant) was the ideal solution. Anais and I wholeheartedly agreed, Aeryn grinned (I may have made that up) but Mark shook his head. “GIRLS!” He said. “Can’t you see the patches of blue?” “Um… no.” “They’re THERE! It’s a perfect day for a picnic!” Oh really.

Long story short(ish):
After two attempts of walking towards our picnic spot, being rained on and returning to the car, Mark managed to procure a last chance go at the picnic. Not sure how though– I think it might have been the persuasive grin and never ending optimism. So we walked into the woods, and it was beautiful! But wet. Very wet. Nonetheless, we spread our blankets, ate yummy picnic food, shivered a bit, and laughed a lot. It rained. My resourceful niece opened the umbrella to shelter what she could. At one stage a rather large dog bounded over to check out the snacks (my heart rate increased 100%, had my arms hovering over the beauties, glare fully directed at irresponsible dog… while Britt was the picture of control – knowing full well that the pooch didn’t pose a threat to the girls. Hmph – Mothers!). The dog owner came over to apologise, and remarked how odd it was to see people “having a picnic in this weather”. Quite. On the way back to the car, I had a lovely chance to explain to Aeryn that the Gruffalo couldn’t be found because he was having his afternoon nap.

I told Mark that a little bit of my love for him died that day – making us have a picnic in that weather!
But I lied. It was fabulous. Everyone should have a picnic in the rain.


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5 Responses to Picnicgate

  1. Patrick says:

    Lady K, Lady K, Lady K!! I found this piece so entertaining, I chuckled all the way through the read! What an author you would make! So proud of you.

  2. Lauren says:

    Brilliant! Love reading your blog, Kirst! You’ve found your calling.

  3. Britt says:

    Love!!
    Chuckling reading this! Re-living it!!

  4. niamhdom says:

    Haha! Thank God for the optimists hey! Great post, has made me smile in the taxi in traffic, a rare feat indeed!

  5. LadyK says:

    Ah THANKS guys! I love getting feedback, makes me so chuffed! Looks like it’s another picnic-weather weekend in London…

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