Easy As Falling Off a Bike pt 3211

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The Daily Dormouse.
(aka Bike, est. 2007)
Part 3211
by Angharad

Copyright© 2017 Angharad


Can it be Sunday morning already? My eyes cracked open and I glanced at the clock, it was four in the morning but the herring gulls on the roof were holding a clog dancing contest and a couple of them were acting as the publicity for the event, squawking the equivalent of, ‘Roll up, roll up...’ I did roll but over not up and felt pressure on my bladder—bugger, I needed a wee. I crept out of bed so as not to wake Simon, he was tired after supervising the girls while I was gadding about yesterday, the fact that Jacquie was there, as was Danielle didn’t count—he struggled manfully on his own and probably paid them all to support the fairy story he told me when we got back. Apparently it cost him a fiver each—I told Trish to hold out for a tenner next time, she giggled like a fiend—some days I do wonder about that girl, not that I’ve heard too many fiends giggling.

After weeing I realised it was very light despite being dark, if you see what I mean. Sunrise isn’t until after five, so it had to be a full moon or near one. I peeped out of the bedroom window—it’s something I rarely do because in the day time I’m busy and at night it’s dark—well usually it is. I couldn’t see much in the garden but I could enjoy the moonlight on the edges of the clouds which it lit up like they were made of silver—the silver lining of black clouds, perhaps?

Of course the moon doesn’t produce its own light it’s reflected sunlight which obviously has lost much of its power by the time it reflects to earth, but I enjoyed the heavenly show and then decided I was getting cold and slipped back into bed with my resident hot water bottle to warm me up. The last thing I remembered was thinking about the beauty of the clouds caught in the moonlight and feeling pleased that I could enjoy it partly because I loved the beauty of the natural world and because I believe such things are a privilege to see. It’s rather sad that so many can’t share in the appreciation of such beauty, but then I’m an unashamed romantic so sort of predisposed to it. It was also better than worrying if my children will have shorter lives than I have because of two lunatics with nuclear weapons sabre rattling at each other. Surely, it has to be rhetoric, anything else would be suicidal but I’ll bet the people on Guam are sleeping less soundly at the moment.

At seven the alarm went off and I switched it off as soon as the lead story wasn’t about an ensuing nuclear holocaust. If it was safe to get up, then I was going to stay in bed a little longer and enjoy cwtching with Simon, or whoever the bloke in my bed was. I checked, it was Si, so I dipped out again. At eight o’clock the patter of little feet led to a patting of my face—not the best way to be woken. Lizzie wanted her breakfast and Cate was standing behind her chuckling and egging her on. Several alternatives flashed through my brain but it was easiest to get up and feed them while I roused myself with a cup of tea and made some coffee for his lordship.

Apparently, my two younger children were excited about dressing up to see their paternal grandparents—at eight o’clock in the morning—these kids are crazy, I’m sure of it. Their dressing up meant I’d probably have to press or iron their best dresses before they could wear them, only for them to drip gravy all over them at lunch—life is such fun with small children. I wasn’t looking forward to dressing up, I much prefer dressing down these days—a far cry from when I first met Simon and actually had a reason to dress up—now it’s just an effort too far. Hark at me, I sound like an old woman, but I’d rather be pulling on a pair of jeans to go dormousing than a posh frock to go and have lunch with my parents in law. Sadly life doesn’t work like that too often and in supporting Simon, I have to make an effort, it’s just the unfairness of it. He’ll pull on a shirt and trousers and probably a sportsjacket and be ready while I have to do things to my hair, put on makeup, wear jewellery and a dress, that given the weather of late, will have a force ten gale blowing up it. Damn, it’s my turn to check the dormice. I don’t do it that often these days but everyone else seemed busy this morning and those with young children will probably be queuing at an airport somewhere on the continent.

As I fed the little ones and the cat—no not to the cat, tempting though it might be—I fed each of them separately—I also wondered how much of a trek it would be to take the ferry to Santander and drive across to Barca and then another ferry to Mao. Probably more than I could do in a day, safely, and in the Veedub not the Jag, not too speedy or comfortable and the rental of a private flight would probably cost as much as the villa was worth. Should I call it off, the whole idea of a holiday? No dammit, I was worth a few days sunshine and the girls will enjoy it once we get there, they always do.

I made some toast and ate it with my tea, then after the two weenies had finished theirs, suggested they might like to go and cuddle with their dad—serve him right. I went and dressed and set off for the university and to attend to my favourite rodents.

None of these are pets, I thought to myself as I put out food and checked for waste products in the cat litter stuff we use under the cages. I thought about Spike and how much she’d meant to me and then the girls, and how upset they were when she died. None of the current cohort of dormice were characters like her, but then I was no longer as intimately connected to them as I had been—the responsibilities of rank had taken me away from them—and I did wonder if it was all worth it or would I have been happier staying as a lecturer and researcher in dormice, doing the things I enjoyed rather than being talked into working above my comfort level to support Daddy. As I could never let him down, it was a purely academic discussion.

I collected the Sunday papers on the way home and saw that the others were all up except Simon and the two little ones, who’d all gone off to sleep again. Danielle was supervising breakfast while i went and got Simon up so he could take her to her soccer game—he half grumbled until I reminded him that he’d volunteered and so it was his own stupid fault, so he’d better get up PDQ or I send the rest of them up to tear him apart. I don’t think he believed me—at least I hope he didn’t—but he complainingly got out of bed and into the shower.


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This story is 1300 words long.