Had a short visit by prodigal long lost son yesterday. I refer to him as prodigal son because the only time I ever see him (and he only lives up the road from us) is when he is after something/wants me to do him a favour/ wants to borrow one of my Xbox 360 games or we have persuaded him to accompany us on one of out jaunts around the UK which cost him absolute zilch.
He arrived about 2.30pm. This is unusual in itself as he normally sleeps all through daylight hours and is awake only at night. (His inbuilt body clock works in entirely the opposite timescale to the rest of us, and so he only functions during the hours of 10.00pm to 06.00am in the morning. Sort of a similar body clock that vampires have I suppose. You know, nocturnal)
‘Hmm’ I thought to myself as I opened the door after calling out my usual “Who is it?” from the top of the stairs before bothering to descend, ‘wonder what he wants?’ Sounds cynical I know, but as this is usually the only reason that he shows his face without being cajoled by some treat out or other bribe into making a visit, and as he was already in bother and could expect a ‘ticking off’ from me because he had insisted that he was definitely going to accompany us on our walk on Saturday morning, and was definitely on his way down to our flat but never showed up, (which incidentally after years and years of experiencing the heart rendering realization that my youngest son is about as dependable as the weather forecast) meant that we set off without him.
“ I came Mum, but you had gone!” was his excuse. Hmm. Another bone of contention. Does he think that if I say we are setting off at 09.45am in order to meet up with the others, that we are then going to hang around forever waiting for him to show his face on the off chance that he might really mean what he says?
“Well, what do you want?” I enquired teasingly as he ascended the stairs. “What makes you think that I want something? Can’t I just visit my Mum to see how she is, without wanting something?” he retorted sounding quite annoyed with me as I followed behind him up the stairs. Hmm, perhaps I have misjudged my youngest son and he has a definite need to know that his old Mums still alive and kicking! Has he suddenly become attentative and concerned about the state of my well being after all these years? Son makes his way into the living room where I am currently on the computer surfing my favourite websites, and we begin a conversation about video games or something of that nature. After about two minutes have elapsed he says
“Can I ask you a favour?” Ahah! What did I tell you? “Will you print me out two application forms for Tesco’s?” What the? If I have printed out one Tesco application form previously for my youngest, I have printed out a thousand! And after all that use of paper and printing ink, was he offered a job? In fact my printer must know that form off by heart, its a wonder its not imprinted (pun) in its memory! Added to that, its a stupid form to print out into the bargain. Its sort of like a booklet, but you can’t print it out as such because some of the pages inside it are full A4 page and yet others need to be folded in half. Plus this time he wants two of the blighters! To rub salt into the wound, or alternatively to make Mum’s blood boil, they have their own computer up there! With a printer! No ink Mum because its so expensive to buy. (Son’s explanation why he always has to resort to asking Mum, who somehow has to manage buying inks for her printer from her measly state pension.)
“Why do you want two? Are you applying for a day job and one at night as well?” (Sarcastic retort from Mum)
“No! Of course not! One’s for M.” What? Bloody cheek! I’ll be asked to print out stuff for every Tom, Dick and Harry and their dogs next! Honestly, who’d be a Mum? Its the hardest job in the world in my opinion! In fact my Mum used to recite a Yorkshire poem for my sister and I when we were children about Mums and we used to love to hear her say it. I have managed to track it down on the internet. Its from the book ‘Yorkshire Lyrics’ by John Hartley, and here is some of it. You have to read it in a broad Yorkshire dialect because that is how it is all spelt.
A’a, dear! what a life has a mother! At leeast, if they’re hamper’d like me,
Thro’ mornin’ to neet ther’s some bother, An’ ther will be, aw guess, wol aw dee.
Ther’s mi chap, an misen, an’ six childer, six o’th’ roughest, aw think, under th’ sun
Aw’m sartin sometimes they’d bewilder Old Joab, wol his patience wor done.
They’re i’ mischief i’ ivery corner, An’ ther tongues they seem niver at rest.
Ther’s one shaatin’ “Little Jack Horner,” An’ another “The realms o’ the blest.”
You can download the whole Yorkshire Lyrics book HERE if you want to read it all, but I warn you that even for a Yorkshire lass such as myself, it is quite difficult to decipher it! But when you read between the lines, you can see that our role of being a Mum hasn’t really changed much at all……