Attempting to make it as a writer

Posts tagged ‘teenager’

Student Digs

I didn’t go to university when I left school.  Once I was out and had a say  I fought all forms of educational establishment and set out on my own pioneering journey of discovery……          That does not mean I have closed that chapter.   My university place is waiting , waiting for me to be ready to take it up.    The difference now 35 years later on; is I actually know what I want to study, how it will shape my life and why I wish to put myself back into the arena of formal learning having fought so hard to get out of it.  Unfortunately my grant for life is no longer valid and I will end up funding it myself.  One of many procrastinating reasons I now delay the start.

I have recently made another discovery, one does not have to move away from home and onto campus to live in student digs.  My home, once the hub of rugby playing teenagers, bmx bikes and sporting  injuries now seems full of hungover bodies who appear briefly as they pass dreamlike through the house and then wave goodbye.

I left home young and spent several years renting before making my move to London.  It was not unusual in those days to find my flat or house filled with friends making the most of the chance to escape their parents and misbehave.  Many a quiet night was interrupted with a distressed friend having left home or not wanting to return home until the signs of drink, drugs or sex had worn off.

Life may have moved on but more and more I find myself waking these days only to come face to face with teenagers have never met before.  Boys, girls, youngsters! I came down to pair of high heeled shoes this morning.  Certain that I would never get away with wearing a pair like that much as I might want to I was also certain none of my boys had taken up wearing high heels.   Although Sexy Sporty Dad might have had a moment of “that’s my boy” we waited till the story was revealed.Student Digs

In time No 1 Son appeared sheepishly more the worse for drink than the embarrassment of a young lady in toe.   Discussion revealed that a misunderstanding in the early hours of the morning had left the girl stranded with nowhere to stay.   When No 1 Son offered her “no strings attached shelter and warmth” she had agreed,thoughtfully removing her heels as she went upstairs past our room.  Although Sexy Sporty Dad and No 1 Son may have had a flicker of disappointment I was delighted the girl was safe and comfortable enough to come and take up the offer of a bed.  I reassured her she was welcome any time.

This followed closely on the heels of arriving down stairs last weekend to the dining table covered with bottles mainly empty of wine, beer and vodka.  Glasses galore scattered round the room some knocked over, some partly full lying beside the packets of cold congealed chips that had been bought and never finished.   We had been disturbed in the night and the  noise downstairs reassured us our children were safely home. Unprepared to clear the mess I put the kettle on.

A noise made me take the very brave step of quietly knocking and entering the lair of No 1 Son only to be met with him lying face down on the floor in front of the door.  Well at least he was home.   I whispered that it might have been better to sleep in the bed.  The body slowly rose and looked up at me.  Someone else’s face said “the bed is full” as he collapsed back into the carpet.

Peering gingerly, I looked round the corner of the room to where the bed hides and discovered the bed was indeed full.  No 1 Son plus one other top and tailed on top of the bed where they had managed to fall.  The single bed protesting at each movement.   I made a hasty retreat straight into the path of an unknown girl headed for the bathroom.

A glance into Middle Son’s closing door from where she had appeared, revealed the floor no longer covered in the inevitable discarded clothing, but a mass of bodies.  Girls snuggled together in one corner, boys in the other,  Middle Son safely tucked up in his bed.

Retreating to my own room with a large cup of tea and the Sunday papers,  I emerged some while later to a near empty house.  Not a bottle in sight unless you lifted the bin on the glass recycling box.

Bumping into a girl sneaking in or out of the bedrooms has ceased to be a contentious issue as most of the time it heralds several other girls and boys also draped over the floor.  I don’t want my children to move on and it is wonderful that the children’s friends feel as at home here as anywhere, but sometimes it would be nice to have teenage warning.

Maybe things haven’t moved on as far as I thought and my home is still a haven for waifs, strays and needy people.

 

Tiggy

 

 

 

 

 

caterwaul

People keep pets for many different reasons: for company, to breed, as working pets or in my case to help out.   The kittens that I have now acquired are the biggest time wasters that I find in my daily routine.  A routine, already full to bursting and does not require the dippy distractions that these miniature maniacs display.    The kittens now 7 weeks old are most certainly developing their own personalities.

Zeus is the sandy brown one who despite being smaller than the rest is nosier, noisier and naughtier than all the others put together.   He is the instigator of many of the DSC_0125sibling battles that take place.  It was him that ventured to test out the food his mother was eating and encouraged his brothers to do the same.   He learnt to climb the stairs struggling to reach the top and luckily for him his claws could catch the carpet and he could pull himself up. Then he learnt to fall down the stairs using his claws to break the fall.  He does not like his tail as it bobs up and down independently and chases him round the house, he then bravely stops to face the offending tail and then chases it turning round and round until he is so dizzy he falls spectacularly over or off wherever he has stopped.

DSC_0113Sparta is grey in colour with unusual striping down his back.   He is more aloof than his siblings and learns quicker than the others what hurts when you run into it.   He will run and play and wobble more than the rest and his head still bobs Churchill like (the insurance dog not the politician).  No 1 Son wants to mount him on the back shelf of the car to bobble at people.    He like the rest of them has found his speed although the balance is not quite perfected and he falls over as he runs.

Obama and Nelson are both black kittens with Nelson having a tiny smudge of grey (white) hair under his chin.  Mini Son instantly knows them apart,DSC_0142I have to catch them which is proving more and more impossible, before I can upturn and check the underneath.    They play well together and can often be seen and heard thundering around chasing each other, stopping suddenly at the top of the stairs.  The chaser launches, unaware of the dangerous precipice and they both tumble loudly down in a tangle of jaws, paws and claws. These two egged on by each other are leading the quest to claw their way up my curtains without falling off.

Mum however is giving me the most headaches.   Busy writing in the early hours on my own I glanced out across the garden.   We seem to have had a string of strange cats at our door recently, waiting.  I have shooed them away and many I do not even recognise as being from round here.  As I tried to glean inspiration from the freshly mowed lawn and the late blossom on the tree I noticed a young black cat sneaking through the garden.  Another stranger!  This one turned and saw me, a spark of recognition in her eyes.  I knew Princess to be locked in her room with all her babies but did she have a twin I knew nothing about.

I moved quicker than her as I had less area to cover. I opened the downstairs cloakroom door just in time to see her climbing back in through the window like a naughty teenager.  The window which had always been left slightly ajar for the fresh air had been pushed open; the array of newly acquired cat essentials on the ledge now lay discarded or fallen. Having explained to her in no uncertain terms the dangers out there for a young teenage mother cat, who must not to do that again.  She looked insolently into my eyes and with typical teenage disdain walked away.

Woken in the early hours of the morning by a horrendous haunting hurt crying from just outside the house, I rushed to see which animal was now injured.   I was beaten to the door and nearly knocked down the stairs by the charging Princess crying to the creature beyond in a newly acquired guttural groan.  My concern changed to her as she cried and writhed in skin tingling irritation.  Rolling her uncomfortable body in un-relievable discomfort she moaned and meowed for many hours.

As soon as the shops were open on a bank-holiday Sunday I went to the local rural supplier to acquire flea tablets.   Although no evidence of the evil parasites she was rolling against anything to relieve the agony.  She wanted to lie on the cool tiles of the kitchen floor to help.  She liked being stroked but did not want the babies near her.   Fast acting, safe for babies and feeding mothers I bought the tablets administering one immediately to ease her pain.   For an hour she fussed and fidgeted, only content to be groomed roughly and not leave my side.  I rang the vet as a precaution and she advised that I seem to have done the right thing and she would call in a couple of hours.  Finally the cat calmed down and stopped her crying, she curled up in front of the window and lay soaking the sun’s rays.  The vet called back and reassuringly I told her the cat was sleeping and all pain seemed to have eased.  I launched into the thankless task of where to de-flea the house first.

Minutes before I served our evening meal Princess as if on a timer woke up crying.  She rubbed herself against my leg causing potatoes to plummet over the kitchen floor.  She yowled as if she were walking on shards of piercing glass.  She slunk low to the ground unable even to lift her back legs as she forced her rear and tail into the air.   The babies came running to see their howling mother in such agony and tried to suckle the pain away.  Princess turned away aggressively and pushed them all away.  Her stomach full of milk maybe she had mastitis or the way her rear end was convulsing could it be urinary?    Laying her gently on a cold pack wrapped in a blanket the meal became fast food rather than leisurely repast. The glass of wine untouched adorned the table invitingly, as we realised a visit to the vet may be called for.

We called in neighbours and friends to try and work out what was ailing this poor creature.  Her crying now a moan, her whole back in painful spasms and then she tried to walk.  Her back legs were dragged with tail in air desperate to raise the underside of her body.  Yowling loud enough to wake the neighbourhood dead I rang the vet again and she agreed to see me straight away.  Princess struggled with the pain as we put her in the carry basket, all the way over she moaned and tried to escape the painful captivity I had enforced on her.

I prepared myself for the worse.  How was I going to tell my boys?  The owner who I am still in contact with?  The cat’s protection league who had entrusted me to continue looking after her?   What was I going to do with 4 orphaned kittens for the next fortnight till they can go to homes of their own.   Driving swiftly but carefully over the bumps which seemed to give her a cataclysmic jolt of pain as I bumped over them, I reached the vets who were ready and waiting.

A miracle!

As I opened the travel cage and pulled the half dead cat from there; she leapt out of my arms to the floor and began pacing the room. No sign of pain, legs fully compliant with her body movements, spasms all spent, she appeared as fit as ever a cat could be, sleek, shiny and speedy.  She began crying as a wave of new exciting smells hit her.

“She’s calling”

The vet informed me.   The next ten minutes taught me more about animal behaviour, in particular cats, in particular Siamese cats than weeks and years reading in a book or on the internet.  She was calling for a mate.   She was desperate to escape and get herself pregnant again. The tail in the air, the craving attention, and the guttural growl are all part of her flirting repertoire.  I learnt that Siamese cats are one of the most vocal and dramatic breed and she definitely has Siamese in her.

Relieved beyond the realms of believability, but angry as any parent of teenage girls I returned to the tense household to explain to my boys that rather than breathing her last she was displaying all the feminine wiles in order to catch herself another boy.   Boys beware, she is cat wailing!

“No chase there then” was Sexy Sporty Dad’s words of wisdom to his male offspring.

Tiggy

Check out my cooking blog at Teatime Treats with Tiggy

Bruised and Battered

You will not believe my week again, waves of déjà vu, nausea and pummelled heart strings.

In some small ways that I haven’t worked out yet we are probably lucky where we live.  We do not however, have an A&E department nearby but like buses within an hour’s drive we have three.  Depending on the ambulance crew will determine where you end up.

At work the other day we had nearly reached break time when the call came through.  Ironically I was already taking a call from another member of top school staff on a less important matter.  I cut the call short as the other line was ringing.

“Middle Son has been playing rugby and taken a bad tackle.”

My mind on overtime “Have you called an ambulance?”

“No he’s fine, he walked off the pitch but is complaining of a sore neck.”

I know I spend a lot of time; some might say too much time dealing with the aftermath of rugby induced sore necks so maybe I am a touch hyper sensitive in that area.  He had, after all walked off the pitch.

I agreed to get there as quickly as it took me to go home and get the car.   I walked or teetered in my high heels and thankfully had the intuition or was it premonition to grab my handbag as I went.  As I drove, that horrible feeling crept over me; haven’t we been here before.

I got to the turning off into town and heard it.  It got louder as my stomach sank low into the well of the car.  I reached the roundabout and there it was coming from another direction; the paramedic, lights flashing, sirens wailing.   Swallowing down the wave of nausea I slipped in behind her and followed all the way to school.

He had become agitated and delirious they thought, so they had called the ambulance.  He is a teenage boy; he is always agitated and usually delirious but only on occasions when you can get anything out of him.

Assessing the tableau before me, I already knew what she would say.   “X-ray needed, neck injuries, just a  precaution,” all words I had heard previously.  How that word, precaution rules my life.

We waited, he breathing deeply on entonox to ease the pain, me pacing the room or holding his muddy hand telling him it will all be ok like an expectant father.  I gave all the complex and intricate medical history and elaborated when they learned he’d been run over, receiving a fracture to the base of his skull.  An event long filed in the memory banks of my mind was now being revisited with each delving question.

Unconscious, for how long?  What were the lasting effects?

The land ambulance arrived and I had to replicate and repeat all the same information.

Finally on our way; Middle son neatly cocooned in the new style back boards which are more like a swimming lilo strapped tightly over the prone body then inflated.  Apparently this cushions the body holding it still.  They also had to cut the collar off his rugby kit to get the neck brace round his neck.  Looks like I’ll be out shopping at the weekend for a new rugby shirt then.

We set off for a very windy, bumpy and rushed journey, well if the rugby didn’t injure the neck the journey had a very good attempt.  Middle Son was offered morphine to quell his pain, unaware of the beneficial pain relieving qualities and learning it involved a needle; he declined.  They unfortunately didn’t have anything strong enough to suppress my nausea or heaviness in my neck and shoulder.  The fact though that middle son was prepared to suffer pain rather than a needle levelled my emotions.

I was glad to arrive at the hospital and get him out.  The journey had become very claustrophobic for him and he was distressed.  He felt very sick, causing a problem in his strapped and prone position we could not turn him easily.  He started trying to fight his way out of the protective cradle while the ambulance crew struggled to hold him still.  It took a while before we were calm enough to be able to get out of the ambulance.  It had served a purpose though; an agitated youngster with a neck injury; they had the doctor look at him very quickly and we were taken to x-ray as soon as we were booked in.

The x-ray thankfully was ok.  They lifted his bed to a seated position, removed the head blocks and allowed him carefully to sit up.  Later, releasing him to a standing position, a wave of giddiness hit him as blood surged to forgotten places. The nurse went through the head injury leaflet with me, another to add to my collection.

If any of the following occur contact my GP or Emergency Department  immediately.

Increased drowsiness or difficulty waking the patient from sleep; he is a teenager!

Confusion or poor understanding of what is being said; he is a teenager!

Mood swings or irritability; he is a teenager!

We escaped.

Realisation hit me I was stuck in town; hungry and thirsty with a hungry thirsty grumpy injured teenager.  Sexy Sporty Dad was stuck the other side of the county in a meeting he couldn’t get out of.   Another ambulance crew and we could have been in the same town as him.

We walked, well he walked I teetered; not really the time to remember I was wearing high heels, into town.  I found Cafe Nero and we both indulged in well earned lunch and the most delicious cup of tea.  I am not sure if this is representative of Cafe Nero or just my timings and need.

On his phone he facebooked all his friends who despite the no phones in school rule all managed to answer him.  I got a text from Sexy Sporty Dad to say he would be able to leave in about 2 hours and would drive straight to me (another hour).

My I-phone came into its own; I googled train times.

There was a train at 29 minutes past or another an hour later.   We crossed to the bus stop there was a bus to the station at 5 past the hour that would get us to the train on time.  It was now 10 past the hour.

Tottering round the corner I discovered the taxi rank.  The driver knew the train times and reckoned barring traffic we could make it despite it now being 20 past.

We arrived with three minutes to spare to find no one in the ticket office.  The station master hardly older than Middle Son was also ticket seller, guard and playing porter when I found him.  The train pulled in to the station as I told him I needed tickets.  Loading top up drinks and snacks, he relayed my need for tickets to the guard on the train, who allowed us to hop on and pay on board.

All well and good but my last cash had been eked out to pay the taxi, who had let me off the last 7p as we were now officially cashless.

The guard however didn’t need to settle for my body or selling my son he arrived at our seat with a portable card reader.

I don’t actually know how much lunch was that day or how much the train fare finally cost.  I know the guard said that in school uniform Middle Son counted as a child.

My final teeter of the day; back up to get the car from school.  I did contemplate getting another taxi home but we needed the car later.   The idea of a taxi to school also crossed my mind, but we had no money left between us.  We walked.

Apart from researching for this week’s blog; I have still to write some new stuff.  Even rugby was called off this weekend so no match report.

Have a safe week

Tiggy

Have you tried http://tiggy-tea.blogspot.com/.  Check out this weeks recipe.

 

 

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