My daughter went hyper when her boyfriend, a cute little guy, decided to come round to see her. The shame she feels about this farm, I share in sympathetic agreement. It's not exactly the kind of place you would want to bring your flame to, I reluctantly invite guests myself. In fact I hate the dietitian paying a visit, always apologising for the geese, dog, chickens, goats -- wall.
"Did you say you have no wall?" she asked.
Well, that's what I said and then she goes on wondering how I cope and turns into a pity party which is the last thing I want.
So back to the lovesick young gentleman who wants to play Romeo without the serenade -- least I hope so, we have enough serenading going on with the geese outside.
"He's coming at six o' clock," she said in a fluster. "Can we at least improve on something?"
Well unless my hubby could build a full gable end, plaster a whole room, lay a new yard, round up the flock, plant roses and paint the entire house, then the answer was No!
"I hate this place. Why can't we have a normal house in a normal place, in fact why can't we be normal and be normal?" And with that disappeared upstairs with heavy feet and scrunched up face.
I found myself vacuuming, polishing and cleaning the kitchen until the whole house stunk of bleach. The cat got screamed at for walking into the kitchen and flew out the door without her paws even touching the stone flags. Spring cleaning in autumn and for what? This guy was only coming to see her, not my half finished abode and if he didn't like it -- tough!
My daughter met him at the top of the hill. Hubby had cross words with me for letting her go on her own, but what can you do when she doesn't want you to chaperone her. I did moan at her a bit but you have to let go at some stage. She did walk across the field and she was in view -- I watched from the upstairs window, and what was that I said about letting go? I saw her rush to the gate as a car pulled into the lay-by. My eyes aren't that good but I could see it was a green car and I was satisfied.
They arrived shortly after as I rushed downstairs without her knowing I'd been watching. The geese kicked off in a frenzy. Chickens appeared from everywhere thinking food was on hand and the goats upon hearing the mayhem, raced into the yard for a nosey. The poor lad froze as my daughter took his arm and dragged him into the house.
"It's okay love" I said with a welcoming smile "They won't touch you"
He smiled and sat down. "I thought I'd had it when they all came at me," he said.
I reassured him although I think he felt safer indoors when my daughter asked if he wanted to go for a walk. He quipped back with an instant, "No!" So my daughter said, "Put the kettle on mum"
Sensing that they wanted to be alone, I wandered into the kitchen and then over to my hubby who was working on the wall.
"Where are they -- what are they doing?" he grilled.
"They're okay, stop worrying -- what's the matter with you?" I offered him a drink but I could see he'd begun to put his things away. "Are you all finished," I asked knowing full well that he was packing up because his little girl was alone with a boy in our front room. Before he rushed in like a jealous bodyguard, I called Steph for a moment. "Take this money and go out," I said quietly. "Take him to the little pub in the next village -- you can have fizzy drinks."
Steve came into the room covered head to foot in dust. "Awreet" he said in a deep Lancashire accent. I glared at Steph and under my breath I whispered "Go." Steve went upstairs to change and by the time he had finished, they'd gone! It was a close shave. What is it with dads and girls?
My week has been full of memories of how my parents used to react when I brought a boy home. It's true that as we grow older we become our parents, even though you vowed never to be like them. Maybe it's a fact of life -- who knows?