Wednesday, 23 June 2010

Insult to injury

Tom spent last weekend in Nottingham getting drunk with his Uni mates, so on Monday we all went out for an impromptu lunch. We arrived at the pub which was full of elderly folk enjoying a quiet meal, and asked Betty what she would like to eat. She replied 'butter'. I told her that she couldn't just have butter and would she like some soup and bread with it. She reluctantly said she would. We sat down at the table and waited for our food to arrive. Dolly happily sat chewing on her two Happyland plastic dogs which she is inseparable from.

Chaos soon ensued. Betty climbed onto the table and knocked over a pint of water. Mops, buckets, and towels came out and a big clear-up operation took place. She was being loud and whingey and clumsy. Our food arrived and Betty refused to eat anything other than butter. Her cutlery clattered to the floor, another drink almost went over, and she tried to run away from the table with her butter.

As I became increasingly aware that the elderly couple at the next table were now not having such a quiet lunch and I began feeling on edge, Betty turned to said couple, and looked them up and down. I was thinking OMG what is about to come out of her mouth. 'I don't like that man or that lady' is what came out of her mouth. Having already completely disrupted their lunch this was seriously adding insult to injury. Through clenched teeth I quietly told her not to be so rude. So she said the same thing even louder. I told her that if she said it again she would not get anything from the treat box later on. So instead of 'saying' it, she began singing it, over and over again 'I don't like that man or that lady' in a sweet little angelic voice.

Tom whisked Betty outside and the elderly couple got up to leave. The lady then began heading towards me and I was terrified and embarrassed and just wanted to disappear. But in a gentle and kind voice she said 'She is at that difficult age dear, it will soon pass, don't despair.'


sew hot said...

Yes,we "elderly"(ones with grown children) totally get it and understand. The phrase that comes to mind is "been there,done that".
Doesn't make the going through it any easier, and...whew...the teen age years are just around the corner!
Fasten your seat belt, you're in for a bumpy ride.

Rob Clack said...

Ah, how sweet. Soooo glad we didn't have kids. They do say the first 25 years are the worst!

I think Sew Hot probably has it spot on - everyone goes through it, but knowing that doesn't help!

sadie said...

Yey! decent people who remember what it was like to have toddlers rampaging around.

Makes my heart sing to read that. On a Saturday we toodle off to Sainbury's to do the weekly shop. Husband takes the Girl to the cafe, with two freshly bought 'magzeens', and they sit for the entire hour or so it takes me to shop, drinking apple juice and making creations thanks to Mr Maker or Charlie & Lola.

I am a mum so have no problem with kids making a racket around the shop, but I see so many people tut tutting at kids running amok. Makes me want to slap them and say 'oi, they're only kids'. That's why I love your dinner story so much. Nice to know there are still understand people in the world.

Mind you, can't help but knowingly smile to self in a very Smug Mummy manner, when I see 'Dad Only' with tinies shopping. He sees it as a bit of an adventure to take the kids shopping. They start off brave and bold, with children NOT in the trolley and all jokey and happy. I walk past thinking 'this won't last'. Sure enough a few aisles down, Dad is looking a tad pink in the chops as little Freddie and Jack run around bellowing, fighting with each other and causing chaos. I hear lots of stage whispering of 'Jack.. put.. it BACK. NO! Put it back NOW'. Hilarious. By the end of it, Dad is beetroot and children are usually wedged in trolley.
Just an observation, but one that makes me chuckle, as I see it so often. Love that the Dads always think they can cope without the children being IN the trolleys. There is a reason why they have straps on the seats!!!!

Love the piccie of your little lady. My little rascal has a very similar stance :O)

Beccers said...

how lovely to know there are still lovely people around!

AliBlahBlah said...

As a parent I'm always hyper-aware of my two disturbing other people, and I'm always pleasantly surprised at how empathetic strangers can be. I'll definitely have to remember to pay it forward - if we ever get out of this stage.......