I’ve just spent the weekend at home with Hannah, while Mike and Ben went gallivanting on the train for football-related reasons.
Being at home proved almost as expensive as their return trip to London.
I thought Hannah needed some winter boots, “need” being a comparative term, when she already has her school shoes to wear out before she grows out of them.
But I was feeling kind.
So Saturday afternoon found us in town.
In the shop, I point out three pairs of girly, flowery, pink-type boots I think she may like.
But she turns up her nose up at all of them.
“They’re not my kind of thing,” she says.
“So what is your kind of thing?”
“These,” she says. And without hesitation she points to a pair of purple, suede, slouchy boots with daisies on them.
“Suede?” I gasp, remembering my beautiful red suede jacket which was ruined after one rainy excursion and which cost more to have cleaned than it cost to buy.
“Or these,” and now she’s indicating a pair of what can only be described as miniature S&M riding boots with shiny turquoise detail.
I’ve already resigned myself to having little or no influence over what she wears, but I do insist on certain parameters for footwear…
- must be free of heels
- must allow wearer to walk and run unhindered
- must last until wearer grows out of them
So I choose three pairs for her to try on, including two of her choice and one of mine.
Luck is on her side.
Her feet are too narrow for my choice, and also for one of hers, which leaves the purple suede slouchers.
She is jubilant, especially when she notices they have dolls secreted inside them.
She jumps and leaps her way back to the car.
She has no patience with me when I want to try on some jackets.
“I want to go home, now, and I want to go out tomorrow, with a friend, so I can wear my new boots.”
So what did we do today?
Invited one of her friends round and went out, each wearing their very new (Hannah) and almost new (friend) boots.
I did manage to buy a jacket though.
So I can make a reasonable attempt to cut a dash in my new life, and avoid turning up draped in a saggy old fleece, a sensible waterproof cagoule, or a ten-year old coat which may have been good in its day, but whose day, like Brigadoon, is lost in the mists of time.