11 Mar 2011

Hestia and....Tartarus (again)

Evidence of Hestia's last minute tidy up 
As far as I can remember, Tartarus has come home on a Friday from Mexico.  Sometimes, depending on whatever weather or security problems have arisen en route, it is Saturday morning before we see him.

I had decided to prepared for his arrival by looking a bit more organised.  So, I secured myself a wash, blow-dry and straightening session with Angela so that I looked fairly presentable for his arrival.  I organised it for Friday.

Trouble was, he came home on Thursday.

Ah well, the best laid plans of mice and men and all that....

Part of my preferred displacement activities (ie stuff that I wasted time on instead of cleaning the house for his imminent arrival) is shopping on ebay.  I bought Sonshine a ridiculously expensive Bakugan thing which arrived the other day - six little plastic balls that fit together to make a plastic dragon - for £45.  I was appalled at it's expensive cheapness. Still, it was his own money (Christmas cash) and he was delighted with it. So fair enough.

I also bought myself a blue and white striped jersey with some red detail because it's Spring 2011, people, and I have NOTHING with a nautical edge.  The bidding started at £3 which was fine, but I got itchy fingers and ended up bidding about £11 for it, which, added to the postage, meant that I could probably have bought the damned thing new for the same price.

Anyway, it arrived.  I put it on.  Horizontal stripes may be in, but I look like a deck chair with tits.

The doorbell rang.  It was a courier.  Delivering something.  I signed for it.  But I had not ordered anything.  A quick glance at the side told me that it was from Laithwaites, the wine people.

I went on line and checked our account (more displacement activity) and confirmed that we hadn't ordered anything since early December.  I decided to phone and a very helpful girl explained that when we bought a case in December, we automatically set up a standing order for a repeat box every 3 months.

Somewhere in the back of my mind, I recalled an instruction from Tartarus about cancelling something. I  hadn't been able to remember what it was and so had done nothing.

This was obviously it.

We now had 18 bottles of the same kind of wine.  Would I manage to get away with it? I wondered to my self as I dragged the box through to the back room.  I slotted the wine bottles into the rack and hoped that he would not notice the veritable wine cellar accruing next to the downstairs lavvy.

Ah well, what else could possibly go wrong?

The day flew past in a haze of furniture polish and a small boy chattering rubbish ('Mummy, imagine if I was a dinosaur - would that be scary? No?  What if I was a dinosaur with a hand grenade? Mummy.  Mummy are you listening?  What if I was a dinosaur in a SPITFIRE?')

The phone rang at ten minutes to seven in the evening.  It was dad.  It was time to go!

We hopped into the car, swishing the windscreen wipers to clear the screen of hailstones and got the heater on full bung.  Two minutes later we were at the ferry port and watching for Tartarus and his little trundle case.

Sonshine could stand it no longer and got out into the howling gale and hopped about whilst looking hopefully into the deep shadows and bright pools of light for the familiar outline of his dad.

And then he was there.  They hugged and kissed and all was well.

I got out of the car to get my hug and kiss only to find Tartarus had already climbed into the front seat and was already telling his son that yes, he would be quite terrified if Sonshine was a dinosaur in a spitfire.

'How was your journey down from the airport?'

'Two arseholes were fighting on the ferry.'

'I heard that,' piped up the voice of Moral Rectitude in the back seat.

Soon we were all back in the house and I got my hug (woopee).

I was quietly quite pleased with the nick of the house.  I've actually been trying to be tidy in his absence. Sure, the compost bin for the kitchen scraps was starting to get a bit whiffy again, but I had gotten kind of used to its cabbagey scent.

He lifted the bin bag out of the bin and tied a knot in it.

'When was the last time that you cleaned out the liquid at the bottom of the bin?' he asked, peering into the darkness of the blue bin.

'Eh, never.  Wasn't aware that there WAS stuff that needed cleaning.'  I looked anxiously over his shoulder into the bin please don't let there be anything stuck to the bottom, pleeeeease.......  Of course there was. Some unspecified stickiness of ancient lineage.  Possibly related to Kevin in the bread bin (yes, he's still there).

Tartarus cleaned out the bin silently.

And I marvelled, for the millionth time, how his long-awaited homecoming left me feeling like a deflated party balloon.

Still, things will pick up in a couple of days - it always does.


  1. I realise that you and T are happy and that this is his way of being, and that he is after all a Scottish man of annoying pragmatism, but if Dave did that he'd be getting heavy evils. Not the lack of hug and kiss(though, that would annoy me), but if he dared to comment on my cleaning or lack of it I'd threaten divorce.

  2. Legend Jnr has always called those things Bockleguns. I could never understand what he was ranting on about until he showed me a rack of them at the store. "Ah, Bakugan", I said. "No Daddy, Bockleguns."
    I gave up.

  3. Oh dear, I'd have been forced to poke him in both eyes if I'd been you. That way he feels pain for his stupid comment AND can't see any further evidence of bin juice.

    Is it massively nosy of me to ask what it is that he does? Mexico seems an awfully long way to commute!

    ps - dinosaur in a Spitfire would surely be mindboggling rather than terrifying? Hope he wasn't imagining being a t-rex. I don't think those little arms could fly a plane.

  4. Oh Ali! You never fail to get me snorting coffee over my keyboard. The getting carried away with bidding on a top that makes you look like a deckchair with tits, getting the old man's due date wrong and Sonshine's cute chatter.
    Jon is so much like that and I can't even blame having a kid on distracting him. He's always noticing a strange smell, a cracked bit of paintwork or a long-forgotten cat toy before all else.
    Have a wonderful time catching up. xxx

  5. I have the same feelings about myself in stripes. Also large florals, except substitute couch for deck chair.

  6. No matter how much we look forward to it, it can be a bit of a letdown when they come home..but how thoughtful of he to silently clean out the bin!

  7. You're so licky to be partnered to such a strong silent type. If it was me I think I might have made a comment like" Have you everheard of disinfectant. Dear."
    Nice about the striped top. Now you'll be giving me fantasies of sitting in voluptuous desckchairs, and that's bad. Deckchairs are supposed to be restful, not arrousing.
    *must have a cold shower*
    BTW Like Sonshine's attitude. A Dinosaur in a Spitfire is sooo cool.
    Look at http://www.buzzfeed.com/ihatedinosaurs/how-the-dinosaurs-died-war-ppz
    Not quite a spitfire, I think it's a tyranosaur in an F-15

  8. oooh and aaah......how I remember the longed for homecomings and the come down.....the father of the kids used to work in rock&roll and would be away for ages...much missed......and then return and start rearanging, prodding and poking......in the cupboards that is ...then the fight.....then make-up.....

  9. Again I think it is an unspoken rule that you are always grumpy when you come home - even a sparkly person like me, but men especially need that cave time apparently - I am making excuses for him and I am sure all will be lovely in a day or two. For some reason I cant comment on my own blog so thank you re the London fab comments and will get back to you x

  10. I am saying nowt cos I have said it all before. Kissy kiss kis

  11. and I see Bute has been nicking Borough of Hackney bin bags again Ali xx

  12. Horizontal stripes are always unforgiving - the mean bastards... Talking of which, WTF was that about the bottom of the bin? He should see ours...whole ecosystems live at the bottom - entire biology lessons for our son.... tish tosh ... Janexxxx

  13. Ha very amusing and as for grumpy chumps, settling back in is the worst, I'm full of glee mixed with moments of temper tiswas as I feel out of sorts.

  14. Dear Ali, I feel for you. I have a cleaner but I still find myself running around checking everything before The Actor arrives, he hates mess too.

    If you want to buy anything on Ebay get in touch with me first. I'm sure I can find you a sequin jacket too. But let me bid on it as I bet I could get it cheaper.

    Hope you've had a great weekend. And you've got away with it re the wine! love, C xx

  15. Dear Alison, I am intrigued, intriuged I tell you, what does T do? is he in the SAS? or is he a pilot? or a spy? please please tell and why does he come home on a ferry? is he in the Navy? Boys 1 and 2 blow ridiculous amounts of money on Bakugan and other plastic crap - the latest is some spinny type things - Beyblades and a stoopid plastic thing to spin them in, when I suggested they just use a washing up bowl, I got short shrift but £7 for a plastic thing with edges?? Anyway, hope you are having a nice time with the Spy/Sailor/International Man of Mystery xx

  16. Blighty - I cannot tell a lie, he is a guitarist in a mariachi band, plying his trade in the streets of Mexico City - speciality song: Delilah (Tom Jones style).

    If only he was a spy, but he is, in fact, a marine engineer in the British Merchant fleet who currently works in the Gulf of Mexico. Think, less Ian Flemming, more Para Handy.

    He is away for six weeks at a time and it has crossed my mind, more than once, that he might be living two entirely separate lives - one with me and Sonshine in darkest Scotland and the other with Conseuela and Jesus in Mexico.

    He comes home on a ferry because we live on an island :-)

    Christina - I really should just get you to do my ebay stuff for me because I'm RUBBISH at it!

    Mrs Make Do - you're right, it's the settling in period that is rubbish. In a few days he'll be fine :-)

    Exmoore Jane - I *know*. I think he's a bit OCD. In fact, I think they all are. I wrote about it somewhere on here. All men are somewhere on the autism scale. I think one is very lucky to find a high-functioning one indeed.

    Di - yes, unashamably nabbed an internet picture. You didn't HONESTLY think I had THAT much rubbish. Well, may be you did. You do know me pretty well.

    Mrs P - come and live with me. I'd love to live with a sparkly person. Instead of a little rainy cloud with a terrible farting issue.

    Mrs YaH - oh, I need to know more about your man!

    TSB - just remember that deckchairs, even the voluptuous kind, have a habit of snapping shut in a painful manner :-)

    Fanny - that's a much healthier way to look at it lol!

    Implausible - I should stick to things with v necks at all times :-)

    Vix - I'm telling you, they are all on the autism scale, somewhere. Looks like Jon and Tartarus are on the OCD side of things :-)

    Alex - he works in the merchant navy in a big boat that is mainly held together by rust :-)

    Legend - Bockleguns - FABLAS!!!!!

    LM - it'll be ok in a few days. He just takes a while to re-bed into civilian life.

    Ali xxxx

  17. This line is genius:
    I look like a deck chair with tits.

    Love you, Ms. Deck Chair.



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