Housekeeper’s Diary

34

There are words in this life no sane woman wants to hear. Namely, “I’m really sorry but I have dripped fish juice all the way from the kitchen to the front door and I haven’t got time to sort it out, sooooooo sorry, byeeeee, mwah!

Fish juice!! At seven forty-five in the morning the very idea of “fish-juice” makes me want to vomit. Actually scrap that, at any time, day or night, the term “fish-juice” makes me want to vomit. So yes. My day started trying to banish the stick of mackerel from the entrance to the house after a certain somebody didn’t quite fasten down the lid of his oh so healthy lunch.

Then the overgrown child started his usual non-uniform day fussing. Apparently convinced that the very idea of non-uniform day was not a raising money for charity scheme, but in fact an elaborate ruse to get him to school in a Batman T-Shirt while the rest of the school arrived in their usual tie and blazer combo. Much ado about nothing ensued with me having to remind him that last time he totally forgot, went to school in his uniform and cared not a jot, so how in the name of a school tie, could it be the end of the world the other way round?

After shuffling him out of the door with a promise to pick him up RIGHT AWAY if he got to school and found the rest of 9C wearing uniform, I stood in my fishy hallway and breathed a sigh of something along the lines of pure relief until I noticed that my little finger had turned green.

Yup. I am the proud owner of an infected little finger and without the sense I was born with, don’t know what to do. So I rang the men. Hey Ste, I have sorted the fish juice but my finger is green, what shall I do? Answer… stop being a wimp and pop it with a pin. Not particularly feeling compelled to commit minor surgery upon my person, I decided that I needed to go higher up the man chain and put in a call to my Dad.  He hummed and haa-ed in the manner of a builder deliberating over a patch of rising damp, and finally decided a call to the doctor was in order before saying, hold on I will call you back in a minute and apparently vanishing into the ether. Perhaps going off to consult Doctor Google, and deciding he couldn’t share news of my impending doom this side of a Bank Holiday and would instead pretend I had never happened.

Ah yes. The Bank holiday. In this part of the world, there is only one event to concern ourselves with this weekend: Liverpool football club in a final of some sort that has got many a man-person apparently quite delirious. As my Dad will be recovering from the shock of his gangrenous daughter and whizzing up the motorway with my five year old nephew in tow, and Ste is one of Liverpool’s most dedicated supporters (damnit), I will tomorrow afternoon find myself in the hell that is a pub marquee with a BIG SCREEN (trust me, you cannot even begin to fathom the kind of excitement such a turn of events can inspire: a BIG SCREEN!!), chasing a five year old in an out of a crowd of screaming men, while my fourteen year old mutters because he hates football and I calm the madness in my head and simultaneously medicate my finger with a bucketful of bad wine, despite having given up drinking alcohol a month ago and frankly feeling all the worse for it. (Ye gads I’m going green…)

You understand though that not going would be unthinkable? That here on the outskirts of Liverpool, the football police will come and frog-march you to the pub anyway if you decide that you would rather be shoe-shopping or sitting in the cinema watching something quietly beautiful? That partaking in this ritualistic celebration is the LAW around here and anyone who won’t play ball (see what I did there??) will suffer the slings and arrows of outraged men dressed in ugly nylon odes to their favourite team?

Too much fun is going to kill me. In the meantime, I am curbing my enthusiasm with a day spent preparing for the chaos a house full of men is going to inflict upon it. One five year old, one twelve year old, one fourteen year old, one forty-seven year old and one sixty-nine year old can, as a noisy, chaotic group with bigger balls to kick than time spent worrying about the little, but quite large, lady shuffling about behind them trying to maintain some order, inflict all manner of domestic grievance upon a home and I need to be prepared. While battening down the hatches might be a bit over the top, dealing with fish-juice- gate once and for all before the madness begins, might just mean I don’t go truly off my trolley during it…

Have a lovely bank holiday won’t you? I will be sure to let you know if my finger drops off.

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  1. Oh my stars!! I love your writing! ?
    Had a Fish Incident here as well once…my dear, sweet husband thought it would be a good idea to thaw some fish in the microwave so the dog could have a treat. Unfortunately, this was about 30 minutes before guests arrived! ??‍♀️ I ran around like a madwoman lighting candles, spraying counters and opening windows. Luckily, he’s never done it again! ?? My condolences. ?

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