Mamma has avoided the worst of the winter by jetting off to Spain. Actually, she’s on a bit of a world tour, since languishing in Malaga will be followed by a Swiss sojourn with my other brother, or as I like to call him, The Pest.
Well, I’ve called him that since he was six, so I see no reason to change my opinion now.
She flew out in the midst of Hurricane Brian or Edna, or whatever it’s called this time, and the easyJet pilots earned their crust that day. The jet apparently took off sideways.
The cabin crew managed to get down the aisle with the trolley of things to buy. Of course they did. It’s easyJet.
They’d take that trolley out even if the plane was doing a barrel-roll, because heaven only knows, someone in that cabin might just want to buy that Lancome La Vie Est Belle 30ml for a tenner less than in Superdrug.
The lad behind the trolley had an unmissably anxious grin on his face. According to mum, the girl looked pretty worried too, but had so much make-up on she couldn’t frown in case it cracked and fell off.
The plane was doing a credible impersonation of a Spitfire on bomber escort duty, no mean feat for an Airbus 319.
Mamma was not in the slightest bit alarmed. After all, she lived with the effects of my dear departed father’s DIY for many years, and God knows, that man clearly attempted to take us with him. Among many notable achievements, he managed to wire the bathroom so lethally that the electrician who came to look at the replacement electrical element on the cooker ordered the entire family out on to the front lawn while he checked the rest of the house.
On the flight, people around mum were actually texting their nearest and dearest. She’s not that good on the old texting, yet anyway, but she is getting better.
But I think she felt a bit left out, so when my wonderful sister-in-law met her at the airport, she said she’d have to get to grips with this technology, in the event of another dodgy moment in the air.
My sis-in-law is an American, and thus very in touch with her feelings. She emotes easily about her inner dimension and, in the case of a life-threatening situation, doubtless would be in a position to fire off a quick missive involving deep emotion and heart-felt expression.
So that’s what she thought my mother would like to express to me, her only daughter, in a time of crisis.
But no, said mamma. She was worried that the plane might crash and I wouldn’t know that the man who had fixed the guttering hadn’t been paid, and would I be able to sort that out?
That autumnal carpet conceals certain dangers
I Love a good drift of autumn leaves, me, but I have to admit, they faintly annoy me.
It’s because they are so lovely. For a few brief weeks, they carpet the city with those golden reds, russets and browns, but I always have the nagging feeling that someone should be gathering them up and using them for something, like making jewellery, or wallpapering a living room or expertly stitching them together to create a simply fabulous gown to grace a screen queen at the Bafta awards.
Instead of which, all that lovely colour goes to waste.
And sadly, and perhaps only in Leith, I saw a young mum stop her toddler charge into a massive drift just on the way to the Links. No, she said, not after last time, when the little lad had emerged from the other side with shoes covered in dog mess.
Supermarket warrior queen
It’s that time of year when I start badgering you about the most amazing history festival, starting on November 17.
Check out the amazing line-up at www.historyfest.co.uk. The programme’s got a sort of warrior queen on the front cover. I’d like to say it was modelled on me, but one glance will tell you that’s nottrue, but I’m thinking of having the armour made up.
Just for a quick trip to Tesco, you understand.