A slightly full diary: I've been invited to coffee at one of the school mum's homes. She has lived here for nearly 20 years so I go expecting an interesting morning.
Finding her home was an education in driving and trying to understand the GPS, but I got there in the end. Some of these streets are so narrow it defies belief that a car can actually go down them. And this narrowness is compounded by the strange habit of planting the many telegraph poles about 2 feet into the road. Her residence was in a very British looking cul-de-sac and I was puzzled to see the wall bordering her house covered in lots of black plastic padding. It transpired she was unable to manoeuvre her very large SUV in and out of the driveway without scraping it so her husband had padded the walls!
It was a nice, if rather bland coffee morning, translated as no imparted gossip or scandal. This woman has a lot of fascinating things to look at, mostly crafts she's done herself; like washi paper covered books and boxes and a particularly lovely doll all dressed in a miniature kimono, all dutifully admired.
And I found my way home again too! Then to "the office" to drop the car off for Tim. But that was a scary trip. There was one huge junction that, if I took the wrong road, I'd end up on the freeway heading off to somewhere far, far away. I had no idea where I was going: one drawback of the road system here is that there are roads underground and roads high in the air with a couple of parallel roads running at ground level. At these points, the GPS gets a bit confused as all the roads are on top of each other so you have no idea if you've taken the right one because they all merge together on the digital screen. So I shot across the massive junction and at one heart-stopping moment thought I'd gone the wrong way up a ramp. Thankfully I had taken the right road and swore to myself I'd never take that route ever again. Way too scary.
All this is because my lovely hand-carved lantern and bowl is to be delivered to work ready for him to bring home tonight, so he needs the car.
However, I forgot to tell him that it came apart into three pieces: a base, the main part and a little ball to cap it off. I also neglected to remind him that they were hewn from solid granite...
It took three of them just to lift the bowl, probably giving them all hernias. Then the ball fell off the top of the lantern and chipped a little. But not too badly and I console myself that it adds to the aged character of it. Tim had to bring a friend home with him to help him carry the items around the side to the garden. I couldn't resist pretending to dither about the ultimate position of these items in my tiny space, but they both swore a lot at me so I relented quickly and made some tea.
Rhiannon has gone to for a playdate; (to the same family as mentioned here Playdate from Hell .) I'm not too happy about this as there seems to be some tension between the girls, but I need to time to work and Rhiannon really needs the companionship of kids her age in order to help her settle in and learn about peer relationships. And it was offered so I'm certainly not going to turn it down. We'll see how it transpires. However, I do send Tim to collect her as I don't want to spend more time with the mother than I absolutely have to.
I still can't put my finger on why she rubs me up the wrong way, but it appears I am not alone, from what I hear from other mums.