This time last year, the four of us were at the very beginning of our five week adventure around France and Spain. Living out of our car, navigating the roads armed with patchy sat-nav, really bad snacks, and so much happiness.
Looking back on it, I just feel pride, really. Proud of my husband for suggesting the trip and making it happen, proud of Tibbs for being so incredibly adaptable, and, proud of Mack the dog, who was still a puppy, for being such a keen companion. Both my babies, human and canine, are such inquisitive souls, and keen joiners-in. They may not remember playing in medieval fountains in the Loire together, or taking down some early evening pintxos in San Sebastian, but I will remind them, probably at about this time each year!
We were the four amigos. I guess now we’re going to be the five amigos. I still can’t picture it, but it’s happening. Small fractures in our day to day life are occurring now. I find it hard to lean over the bath to wash Tibbs. I had second thoughts about climbing into the flower bed to pull nettles.
I remembered I couldn’t roll down the hill in Brandon Hill Park (am I the only mum who willingly takes on this demo role? Never too old for hill rolls!)
We went to Pinkmans Bakery on Monday (as an aside, they even let dogs in there you know, at the front). In the back, on the high tables, were lots of families. It struck me that everybody was having a Bank Holiday excursion, taking time to enjoy a special ritual in the sweet capsule that is eating great food together, with all the associated behaviour and conversation that goes with it. I had this custard-dipped brioche and maple bacon thing. But I enjoyed sitting opposite my husband and my daughter, listening to them bartering with each other for morsels, teaspoons and napkins. I just can’t imagine this scene with another baby sat beside me, or on me, yet. But, as I said, it’s happening. The de-caff flat white I nursed as I watched them told me so.
Proudest Bank Holiday moment? Tibbs taking on the trapeze wire at the Bristol Old Vic 250th anniversary carnival. Such concentration. And her hair, which I still don’t really understand. I guess I need help understanding a lot at the moment!