September 14, 2010


Blog Linda Cook - Amsterdam: juggling

Mummy, Mummy, Mummy
I want your life
Where there wasn’t any clutter
And there wasn’t any strife.
You got up in the morning
And you did your thing:
The washing and the cooking
And the hoo-ver-ing.
There weren’t any emails
No no no
Just the dusting and the gardening
And coffee with Jo.
[© 2008]

Well, no blog last week I’m afraid – too busy keeping all my balls in the air, or if you prefer, my plates spinning. When I lived in England, and on regular visits since I left, I used to buy ‘She’ magazine which had ‘For Women who Juggle their Lives’ printed down its spine. And that was in the Eighties, before internet. Nowadays, before it checks its emails, that caring and conscientious army of working single and semi-single Mums strives to get its kids to school smiling, wearing clean clothes and with a healthy lunch in their collective rucksack. We try not to leave too much breakfast clutter on the kitchen table (you’ll just have to tidy it up when you get home) and we dread that moment when we open the fridge door and get to see the muck that’s encrusted on its inner back wall. That means the fridge is empty and we have to squeeze in a trip to the supermarket sometime. Shopping is never a thing that gets planned in. It’s a filler. Of course, you can consider doing it when you’ve picked your son up from school. But then you run the chance of him complaining the whole time because he’d arranged to continue fighting the Battle for Middle Earth in a virtual Lord of the Rings environment, online, with his mate, at 4 o’clock. So you get home and try to motivate him to feed the guinea pigs without spilling hay all over the floor. If you can find love in your heart, and reserves of humour and patience from wherever their natural springs are, you can probably persuade him to help you put the shopping away and empty the dishwasher before he collapses onto the couch with a Donald Duck. Then, and this is a challenge that usually coincides with the preparation of dinner, you remind him to do his bass guitar practice, and persuade him, despite protestations to the contrary and threats of tears, that no he can play the bass riff to ‘Respect’, which is being sung by Aretha Franklin at an astounding tempo on YouTube. I’d love to go on, but I’ve got three deadlines on consecutive days this week. Never mind, I’m planning a break in Berlin before too long. ‘Logo!’

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