I know, three days away from the computer, I’m amazed. Let me share all the fascinating things I did with you.
On Friday afternoon, I decided that the Princess and I would go to IKEA. I picked her up from school at 3.15 and when, at 4.00 we still hadn’t reached the motorway, I should have realised that we were doomed. Once on the motorway, I took the wrong exit and found myself driving despairingly round deepest, darkest Anderlecht.
Me: Insert swear word here, we’re insert swear word here lost.
Princess: Mummy, say “oh dear, we’re lost” and there’s no need to worry, just stop and look at the map or maybe we can ask someone for directions.
Following the three year old’s sage advice, we got there eventually at 4.40. This left us just time to buy the bar of chocolate I had promised her in return for her good behaviour in the car and a small selection of Christmas baubles. I was saved from buying further tat (including obligatory nightlights, pog) by my daughter who put her chubby hands over my eyes and said “don’t buy anything Mummy, we have enough stuff and, if we buy it all, there won’t be enough left for everyone else”.
At 17.08 we left IKEA to pick up the boys from the creche, the Princess munching contentedly on her large bar of chocolate. By the time we reached town, she was begging me for water. “Mummy” she said desperately “promise me, you’ll never buy me chocolate again”. We stopped in a shop for an emergency bottle of water which she immediately spilt all over herself. She spent the remainder of the journey to the creche elaborating on how wet she was “Mummy, my vest is wet. And my t-shirt. And my socks”.
Saturday was spent admiring Saint Nicolas in the Grand Place. The Princess managed to secure five plastic packets of sweets by looking pathetically at the acolytes of Saint Nicolas as they went past while hastily stuffing the fruits of her last pathetic glance in my pocket. If you want to know who Saint Nicolas is, may I refer you to this charming story?
Sunday saw the Princess at a concert. It was Sleeping Beauty done for kids. A bit of Tchaikovsky, a bit of story, a bit of general classical music for kids and a bit of looking at musical instruments. Mr. Waffle told me that the ex-pat middle classes were out in force and you couldn’t swing a cat without hitting a brilliant, multi-lingual international tot (including ours, of course). It transpired that we have, however, let her down badly in the Peter and the Wolf stakes. While all the other kids in the audience bellowed out the answers to which instrument is which part, our girl was baffled and silent. And we have the U2 boxed edition as well (of course, we do). Mea culpa, mea culpa, mea massima culpa.