A weekend away

Some highs and lows of a mother daughter bonding weekend.



It’s one of those things that people tell you when their children grow up. “It all goes so fast and soon they’re gone”. But you don’t think about it or only in fleeting moments during the rollercoaster of the early years and the general getting-by-ness of the other years.

Daughter one is now 18 and will be applying to university imminently and then she’ll be moving on.

So, as you can’t stop time, I’m making the most of this year. This weekend we had a mother daughter trip to Scotland. It didn’t start very well. We were both recovering from colds and I got about two hours sleep on the sofa on Friday night due to a terrible cough. En route from the car park to the airport,  the bus was delayed and a kind man gave me some Strepsils.

When we got into the airport we had 20 minutes to get to the gate.  I ducked and dived through the crowds. Daughter one is much more serene than her mother and doesn’t do rushing. She glided behind me.

We got to the gate in the nick of time. The small problem was that the combination of running and drinking lots of water to beat the cough is not a good one. There was no time to stop or to get any more water for the flight. Daughter one was seated somewhere several rows in front of me. I was between two men. Inevitably, I started coughing, even before take-off. The men turned away. This was going to be one long flight. In the course of the time between take-off and being able to take the seatbelt off, I consumed four Strepsils. I had a vague recollection that you are only allowed a certain number in any given three-hour period [it’s one, I later found out]. We arrived in Scotland feeling fairly spaced out.

I grew up in Scotland, on and off. I showed daughter one round all the places we had lived and my old schools. 2018 seems to be one of those years when I have been forced to revisit several episodes of my past.  I guess it’s an opportunity to reassess and move forwards.

Daughter one was enthusiastic about every bit of Scotland and especially impressed by the fish and chip shop offering pizza in batter. We went to see a friend on day one and explored Perth, Loch Leven and Edinburgh on day two.

We received multiple messages from home. Daughter two texted on Saturday night to say she had broken her phone in mid-snapchat to a boy. There was an extended exchange with daughter one as she wanted the password to daughter one’s phone, which is apparently classified information. “xx will think I am rude,” she said. “You will look enigmatic,” I replied. Ping. A message followed from daughter three. She had dropped her phone and smashed the screen. We leave the house for a day and there’s phone-armageddon.

We returned late on Sunday night. This time I chose Lockets. There is no safety limit on a Locket. Daughter one, who had been an expert co-pilot throughout, had taken a photo of where our car was located. Unfortunately, the photo was so blurred that we couldn’t read the letters and numbers. When we finally located it the car had a puncture. All in all it was definitely a bonding experience, but maybe not the one I had envisaged.

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