12 October 2009

Cat and Mouse

It was risky but, due to babysitter shortages, Chick was coming with me to meet the Headmistress of his potential new school. Before we left, I gave a short but inspirational ‘briefing’.

“You see these sweeties” I removed the jar of Percy Piglets from the shelf before wafting them around his nose. Chick inhaled, his pupils dilating with longing as he nodded emphatically.

“Well” I whispered, crouching down, “they can all be yours.” Now in a trance like state, Chick’s eyeballs never strayed from the piglets. “All you have to do is be SUPER good when we go to big school.”

He licked his lips. “Agreed then” I said, patting his head before bundling him into the car. On the way, I ran through some behavioural expectations.

“Remember manners. Don’t run. No squawking, roaring or spitfire impressions. Whatever mummy asks, do it quickly and quietly.” Chickie stared ahead.

“Your entire future depends on it” I added in a sinister whisper for dramatic emphasis. Confident that my four year old now understood the importance of the occasion, we trotted off, to meet Mrs Bewbush.

In my head, when imagining the introductions, Chick had been waiting, cross legged, whilst flicking through ‘GCSE Maths: Higher Level, The Revision Guide.’ What I hadn’t anticipated was that I’d be pulling him out by his legs from beneath a giant paper mache elephant.

“Let go of that carpet tile now!” I spat through gritted teeth, whilst turning around to smile sweetly at the Headmistress and the other families who were all waiting patiently for Chickie to release his grip.

Once retrieved, I whispered, “They’ll be no Percies now, Mister” before he scampered off down the corridor. And then nipped through an open door into the playground. Agog, I stared at the retreating silhouette I couldn’t quite believe was mine as it sprinted across the running track before disappearing. I apologised to Mrs Bewbush who continued her presentation as I took up pursuit.

“They’ll be no sweets, no aeroplanes, no playdates, no bike, no trains and no FUN!” I ranted at the child smirking at me as I pulled him back across the field towards the normal families. “Wait till I get you home” I jabbered on.

Later, at home, Chickie was distinctly unimpressed as I closed all his blinds and tucked him into bed at lunchtime. Ignoring his wails, I stomped downstairs to email his father.

Eventually, all that could be heard was the tv. Until the chuckling started. Curious, I checked his room, where he was no longer in residence. Nor was he in our room, or anywhere upstairs.

That’s because he was on the sofa – enjoying cartoons. Until I started chasing him around the living room, out into the garden and then back up into his bedroom - the Tom and Jerry theme tune, playing in the background.

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