We are booked onto the 12.30 train from Cardiff Central so we need to pack a lot into a short space of time. However (though I say it myself as shouldn’t) I am a World Expert in packing things in. If there
happened to be a GCSE in Packing Things In, then I am sure I would be awarded an A*. It’s probably a side-effect of the Usher Gene which, as regular blog readers know, bestows on the females of the Usher Family an innate ability always to find
space in any fridge, cupboard or wardrobe, however crowded, for “just one more thing.” It’s but a mere step from overfilling a fridge to planning a Last Morning in Wales crammed with activity.
Before the Bigger Boys set off for school, we need to watch Young Morgan open his present from his Grandad and me. We all sit around a small table on which our present (wrapped in Thomas the Tank Engine wrapping
paper as chosen by the Duracell Bunny himself on our shopping trip the previous day) rests in splendour. I have my camera at the ready to record the happy scene, as does the Darling Daughter-in-Law. We have to wait a bit while the two Big Boys
trot off to find their own cameras – then when they return it’s the Duracell Bunny’s turn to hold everything up while he rummages around behind the sofa. He emerges, triumphantly, holding aloft his own toy camera. There we are,
the five of us, all with our cameras trained on the unopened, gift-wrapped present. Nobody – not even the Birthday Boy – has a free hand to unwrap it. It is one of those classic hilarious moments which will live long in my store of Nanna
The Big Boys and I have to leave their Mum to struggle with putting together our present of a lime green ridealong tractor and trailer because we have
to get to school on time. I do so love taking the boys to school, it is one of my not-so-secret pleasures. As we progress along the road we are joined by one friend after another, each and every one dressed in bright red jumpers just
like Sam and James. There is a lot of yelling out of names. “Hey, James!” “Hey, Sam!” To which my pair respond, equally loudly: “Hi, Ben!” “Hi, Olly!” They surge, as one, across the road where the Lollipop Lady
stands on guard, and charge along the pavement, swinging book bags, sports bags and packed lunch boxes.
I tell the boys how I used to take their cousins Jack and
Hazel to school when they were at primary school. They always wanted to take their scooters, which was great for getting them to school on time but meant I had to carry the scooters home with me. “Why didn’t you scoot home?” James asks
me, with irrefutable logic. I don’t want to lose face but, like George Washington, I cannot tell a lie.
We arrive just as the bell rings and
I watch as the boys, still chattering, line up with their class-mates. I take particular notice of James’s teacher who, by all accounts, is a Good Egg but has still not awarded my Middle Welsh Boy the coveted Class Cup. I concentrate really, really
hard on thought transference. It might just work...
On the way back I meet lots of red-jumpered stragglers being urged along by harassed parents and silently
congratulate myself on having delivered my twosome on time, despite the fact that we had left home later than usual on account of the Great Present Opening Ceremony.
After a quick cup of coffee to recover from my early morning exertions, we take the Duracell Bunny off to beautiful Roath Park where he can race about to his heart’s content, football at his feet. He climbs, over and over again, to the top of
the highest, longest slide I have seen in any park, launching himself downwards with a confidence belying his tender years. “Nanna slide down!” he commands me. I pretend to be tying my shoe lace. First James, then Morgan – what a disappointment
I am turning out to be in the Adventurous Nanna Stakes.
Mr B and I arrive at the station in plenty of time, thanks to the timely transport provided by the Darling
Daughter in Law. The Duracell Bunny drops off to sleep in his car seat halfway to the station so we can only drop kisses onto the top of his head by way of farewell. If his father had been there he would have suggested that this might be a blessing in
disguise – he still shudders at the memory of Sam’s total meltdown on Platform 2 when, at about the same as Young Morgan is now, he realised I was leaving on the train.
No need to upset ourselves this time over our leaving – because next week it will be our turn to welcome the Little Welsh Boys and their parents to our house for a few days.
Just a few days – but we’ll be sure to pack a lot in...