And a quick run down of the events of the last week:
Tuesday – With deadline for submission of Final Major Project looming, Ms Miffy panics and throws a wobbly.
Wednesday – BF having persuaded her to talk to tutors, Ms Miff stays up all night working.
Thursday – Having been told by tutor that if she can write some reflections explaining the gaps in her work, she might just scrape through and avoid being put on referral. She stays up all night, working.
Friday – As I leave for work at 4.45 a.m. I bump into Ms Miffy who by now has written around 12,000 words.
Friday morning – I bump into Ms Miff on the train and learn that she’s turned out a magnum opus of thesis like proportions – 16,000 words! She appears ever so slightly incoherent as well she might.
Mid morning – I arrrive in Godiva land and proceed to sister in law’s new care place. After a long chat and having passively smoked at least 10 cigarettes, I leave for (according to taxi driver) short walk over to MIL’s care place.
20 minutes later – I appear to be approaching open countryside. I’m lost. A charming old gentleman tries valiantly to point me in the right direction – down a charming (and long and windy) country lane
30 minutes later – give or take – and after an interesting ‘stroll’ through the Warwickshire countryside with periodic jumps into the hedgerow to avoid speeding motorists – I see a pub looming up in the distance like an oasis. I enter oasis – order half a Strongbow and beg directions from nice barman
Nice barman directs me the pretty way – over the fields. Five of them… En route I’m assaulted by a friendly horse who is set on sharing my Pringles
Finally arrive at MIL’s sweating profusely – my 24 hour deodorant failing dismally to live up to its promise. I also appear to have trodden in something smelly somewhere along the way.
Agitated looking manager appears at window before I’ve even had a chance to ring the bell and ushers me into office. Informs me (amongst many other disturbing facts) that MIL is not eating and looks set to be heading towards another breakdown. Are trying to get hold of CPN for assessment.
Visit to MIL confirms all that manager says. A couple of hours later I leave and am again ushered into office. More staff now. We restablish contact details. I mentally begin to ponder rearranging my arrangements for the next few days. Should I stay on? Do I call Mr M back to the UK? And so on.
Taxi to station where meet ‘Ship’ person for quick cuppa. A lifesaver, especially as train is jam-packed and my 24 hour de-odorant is again put to the test as I stand elbow to elbow with fellow passengers all the way down the line.
Saturday – Phone home. Situation pretty grave. Awaiting arrival of CPN on Monday. Looks as if MIL is set to be admitted to local mental health unit.
Sunday – Agitated phone call from MIL to tell us that her younger sister died earlier in the day. Pick up message from her neice to confirm this. Head starts whirling round, rearranging arrangements etc…
Monday – The big push for little M. Two weeks of GCSEs and he’s starting the world’s worst cold.
Another agitated phone call from MIL – over small admin matter which staff of home are dealing with. After call, take dog for walk in lovely sunshine, plant out prize winning sunflower seedlings and herbs.
Tuesday in the wee small hours – Miffdog will not settle to sleep. After 2 hours of trying every solution known to man, Ms Miff, in despair, wakes me at 2 a.m. Actually I’ve been largely awake since 12 anyway…worrying about MIL, and arrangements to fly Mr M back home. She staggers off to bed, whilst I try every solution known to man…. At 3.30 a.m. admit defeat, get dressed, make breakfast and doze sitting on bed for an hour before getting ready to leave for work. Hope that little Miff at least has had some sleep.
8 a.m. Drag self back from job number one – with worryingly scant memory of how I made the journey. Phone Job no 2 babble incoherently and excuse self. Collapse and sleep…..
Afternoon – Call MIL’s care place. Absolute astonishment! Today MIL has got up, dressed, had her hair done, and been down to eat her lunch. CPN has called and it’s been arranged for her to visit the local day hosp in a week or so for assessment.
Ms M and I book flights for Mr M. He’ll come back for a couple of days for his aunt’s funeral next week, before flying out again.
Evening. Take self out to listening course. Timing rather appropriate, don’t you think? I’m impressed at my powers of concentration considering. Though aftertwards I begin to go all incoherent….
And so to bed…. Have been asleep a couple of hours when…yes, you’ve guessed it! Try every solution known to man etc…and after that close bedroom door and ignore the poor thing. By the time I leave for work, all is quiet.
On return from work bump into migraine struck Ms Miff coming the other way. After I left, guess what?! She tried every solution known to man etc… mopped up pile of sick and mopped fevered brow (hers).
Ring vet. Mop up another pile of sick. Take dog to vet where he patiently puts up with needles being stuck in him, blood being taken, temperature being taken (I’ll spare you the details) and anal glands being expressed. (Again, I’ll spare you the details) Looks as if it’s probably just a tummy upset but blood taken for testing of pancreatic function, just in case. One positive – Miffdog has lost weight. At 15Kg – we checked to see he had ALL four legs on the scales, he’s down to normal for his breed.
Home, where Miffdog collapses in basket, Mother Miff collapses in armchair, and little Miff collapses on sofa for last, minute revision for afternoon’s exam.
Phone rings. It’s a proud Mr Miff from atop the 1,540 m Col de Soudet in the Pyrenees. All in one go. No stopping!
Ms Miff arrives home. Takes little Miff’s place on sofa.
Nobody can say that life’s boring round here.