I have often had cause to bewail the state of my hair. Well groomed I will never be, not when my Crowning Glory is the opposite of, well, glorious. However hard my hair stylist tries to tame my curly locks, they revert
to waywardness almost before I have left the salon. Never before, however, have I had cause to complain that my hair was too shiny. Let me explain.
I have just
returned from a truly splendid long weekend with my Little Sister and her fella, leaving Mr B in the tender loving care of the Really Rather Wonderful Rosalie. I never need to have a particular reason for visiting them but this time round we did have something
to celebrate. Back at the beginning of May, when they were planning to mark their Golden Wedding anniversary with a full-scale family party, COVID restrictions meant my sister and her fella had to cancel their Big Day and opt instead for a smaller (though
by all accounts extremely special) celebration. Now that we have all been allowed out to play again, the Golden Couple decided to organise a Picnic in the Park, issuing an invite to all the family. Obviously I just had to be there.
The weather forecast on Saturday was horrendous, with the Met Office even going so far as to issue an Amber Warning for the country park where we were supposed to be heading. It was decided that we
would be safer to stay home and enjoy what I used to describe to my children and grandchildren in similar circumstances as an “Indoors Outdoors Picnic.” My nephew went as far as to suggest that the Picnic in the Park could be restyled as Picnic
with the Pensioners though for some reason this new title wasn’t included in the messages which went out far and wide, advising of the change of venue. Meanwhile my never-to-be-outdone-by-a-weather-forecast Little Sister started planning how to fit twenty
people into the conservatory, allowing for an over-spill into the dining room where the table had been pushed back against the wall to allow more breathing room.
the event, the weather forecast turned out to be just about as wrong as it was possible to be. Unexpected sunshine meant we could set up our camp in the back garden, making a large circle of beach chairs to accommodate us all. There we gathered, all twenty
of us - covering a span of seventy years from oldest to youngest. That’s what you call a Family Picnic.
After our picnic lunch it was time for fun and games.
Chinese Whispers was the first game, which was skilfully sabotaged by the youngest party goers who chose to substitute their own choice of words rather than even attempt to pass on the original message. Think poo, po, bottom and the like - I’m sure you
get my drift. This was followed by a spirited game of Wink Murder where my creaky joints prevented me “dying” theatrically when the murderer winked at me. Fortunately the rest of the family made up for my deficiency by playing the game properly,
as it is meant to be played - nobody meeting their end more enthusiastically than Young Faris, despite this being the first time he has ever played that particular game.
Finally my Little Sister produced the wherewithal for team games - plastic eggs and wooden spoons, colourful cones, and small, squishy bean bags. The latter were to prove my undoing. I was pitted against my grandson - we each had to balance a bean bag
on our head while weaving between a line of cones. Faris’s bean bag sat securely on his head, held in place by his curly hair. My bean bag slipped and slid off my shiny hair seconds after I started out. Every time I rescued my bean bag from the grass
where it had fallen and replaced it on my head, my shiny hair let me down yet again.
Which would have been bad enough but instead of keeping my arms straight by
my side like Faris, I walked along with arms bent and my hands curled just below my chin. I looked exactly like a slightly demented meerkat. On the incriminating video film (yes, of course, my performance was recorded for posterity) the Middle of the Darling
Daughters can be heard guffawing with helpless laughter.
Bring it on, I can take it! When it comes to providing free entertainment for a family gathering,
I am a Shining Example of the very best way to do it…