I have spent today mopping up sick and diarrhoea. Not my own, and not just from one source either. L came down with a bug last weekend which very naughtily pretended it had gone this week, only to return with a very real and unexpected vengeance last night, which meant he spent the night on a makeshift bed in our room. Two days ago Poppy thought the best thing in the world she could possibly do was to eat a daffodil bulb. As it turned out, it wasn't the best thing she could do and her tummy has been telling her that ever since, with not great results for our carpet, or indeed my sanity.
Whilst I am stoic about such bodily things, having been a mother for the past twelve and a half years, an animal carer for all my life and a healer for the last 17 (which taken all together means there is not much I haven't witnessed/ heard about/ had to mop up over the years), I do not relish such activities and have to gird my loins and grit my teeth considerably every time I have to involve myself with them. I think it's safe to say I would never make a nurse (or if I did, it would be a very bad one).
Poppy's bulb-chewing meant that this morning she and I took a trip to the v-e-t and she now has a course of antibiotics and some soothing gel for her stomach, while I am the lighter by 77 pounds. The run-in with the bulb means she can't have normal dog food and requires a special soothing diet of chicken and fish for the next God knows how long. Which means Ted will also get a special soothing diet of chicken and fish for God knows how long even though there is nothing wrong with him, and my bank balance will have reduced itself further, as if by magic.
To add insult to injury, she isn't even lying in her bed clutching her stomach with her paws, groaning in agony writhing about and saying with sad eyes: 'I'm so so sorry for all this not-inconsiderable inconvenience I am putting you to mum, and I will never eat bulbs again.' OH NO, she is running about like a mad thing, swinging off Ted's ears and leaping onto and off the stairs like there is no tomorrow and generally being exuberant. And if bulbs are anything like Toads, she will not learn never to eat them again either, as evidenced by Ted's Summer Toad Licking Activities, which he partakes in every year, and every year returns to the house looking guilty and foaming at the mouth. Now he does lie in his bed looking very sorry for himself indeed after an episode of Toad Licking, but it never seems to teach him not to do it again..
M reads to me at night (lovely). Our current book at bedtime is Dara O'Briain, read on the kindle, and that is what we had last night.
'I don't like comedy books,' came a small voice from somewhere down near my feet, as we finally got to bed after sick-mopping and brow-soothing and bathroom-floor-cleaning and clothes changing and towel procurement and bed-making-up and bowl finding and flannel dampening and general re-arranging of our entire bedroom to make way for the bed on the floor
It's funny, I said, you'll like it.
'Is it like Miranda?' came the small voice again, after a pause during which this information had presumably been digested. 'Because if it is I don't like Miranda.'
It's not like Miranda, I reassured him. Trust me, you'll like it.
'Can't we read How To Blow Up Tollins instead? came the small voice.
Actually, How To Blow Up Tollins is a very funny book and I was seriously tempted, but in my moment of quavering indecision M settled the matter by firmly starting to read DOB (he doesn't share my and L's positive assessment of How To Blow Up Tollins, which, frankly, is his loss, because what sane individual wouldn't enjoy a story about fairies being blown up to make fireworks?). It was a good call as it happens though, to read Dara I mean, because within seconds there was audible giggling coming from the region of my feet, and it swelled in decibels as the reading went on.
I must've dropped off at some point, because the next thing I knew it was morning, the thrush was serenading me from a tree by the lake and Valentine's day had arrived.
The Small Person was fast asleep in his makeshift bed when M and I exchanged gifts. Mine to him was an upgraded rain gauge. Honestly, you've never seen anyone so excited about anything before in your life ever. He rushed straight out, rammed it in the ground beside the old one and then stood back and surveyed it critically from every conceivable angle, tweaking it every now until he was satisfied he'd got it just right. And then he looked back at it twice as he was walking back down the garden path. I know this because I was watching from the bathroom window, grinning, and he doesn't know I was watching and will only find out when he reads this.
His to me was a necklace pendant in silver inscribed with lots of tiny butterflies (which I am pretending are moths, for obvious reasons). I also gave M a bottle of red wine selected by the wine expert at our local wine shop, which was a rather lovely experience on the whole. Although he did also try to sell me a bottle of pinot noir under the verbal heading 'this wine is an aphrodisiac,' nudge nudge, wink wink, perfect for valentines, you know what I mean, misses? I laughed politely with him, but decided against telling him that a vomiting child sleeping in your room and a puppy evacuating sloppy poo from her rear end on your hall carpet were the most powerful anti-aphrodisiacs known to man and next to that a bottle of wine had no chance.
Onwards and upwards....
Have a lovely evening all,