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Sunday, 9 February 2014

Evidence that Fran has done a variety of things twice

I said to my sixth formers on Friday,  'Chances are I'm going to be a Grandma for the second time this week.'

'The second time this week?' one of them said.  'That's very impressive.'

'Er - let me rephrase that,' I said.  'Chances are that, this week, I'm going to be a Grandma for the second time.'

And I was! 

Galling, though, to have someone in your English Language A level class point out your faulty syntax.

Anyway, here's the baby.  Phoebe Esther Hill, born very early on Saturday morning.  A sister for Elijah, who's now 20 months.






Here are some other things I have done twice.

1. Given birth to girls.  I had one baby girl in 1983, a sandwich filling of a little boy in 1986, and then another baby girl in 1990.  The sandwich filling is the one who's the father of my grandchildren, so he's done pretty well, despite starting out as a lunch ingredient.  

Here's the younger of my daughters with her niece, newborn baby Phoebe.



All the Hill children begin sweet and serene.  Then things change ...


2. Eaten artichokes.  This year, my husband grew artichokes on his allotment.  There's a saying, isn't there?  'Fool me once, shame on you.  Fool me twice, shame on me.'  Well, let's just say, the Latin name for artichokes isn't 'Friendsus Leavus Rapidus' for nothing.  I had a whole social circle to rebuild.  And it's not easy to take, when people say, 'Okay, I'll come back and be your friend, but don't get offended by the gas mask, that's all.'

3.  Read a book called 'When God was a Rabbit' by Sarah Winman.  This was finally proof that my memory is now as leaky as an inadequate Tena pad.  I got easily half-way through this book a fortnight ago, only to realise that some of the details were becoming familiar.  I'd read it last year.  I finished it anyway, because when I say 'becoming familiar' I'm playing fast and loose with the truth.  I kind of recognised it.  But not so much that the ending still wasn't a surprise.  If I write a blog post next week and entitle it, 'Fran's first blog post ever' you'll know why.  

4. Sung karaoke.  The first time was one New Year when I was staying at my sister's and someone brought a karaoke machine to the party.  My sister's partner had introduced me to gin and tonic that winter, only his method of pouring gin into a glass is to start pouring, then while still pouring, answer a phone call, stir the stew on the cooker, do a bit of washing up, go for a jog round the block, book a holiday in Madeira on the Internet, and then stop pouring.  He then adds whatever tonic will still fit in the glass.  (He doesn't get through bottles of tonic very quickly.)  All I remember is singing, 'Tainted Love' really really well, even though I'd never heard the song in my life before.  As I screeched like a banshee with laryngitis, and flailed my arms around like a windmill, I looked and sounded fanTAStic, I knew it.   

The second karaoke session was with my brother in a pub in Cardiff.  He gave me the choice of which song we could do, and I chose 'Unchained Melody' by The Righteous Brothers.  My brother looked at me and said, 'You do realise that's really difficult to sing' and, despite never having sung it before, I decided he was just playing scared.  Then we sang it.   Without the help of gin, I managed to sound as though I was having a limb amputated without anaesthetic while simultaneously having three teeth out, extracted via my eyeballs.  I'm not sure he's ever been back to that pub again.  In fact, I suspect word spread, and he's now having to go somewhere on the edges of Shropshire for a quiet pint, where people don't remember the night he brought the sister whose voice turned the beer sour.

Fran's karaoke tutor in action - another reason why Fran's brother may have been embarrassed by her ...



20 comments:

  1. Oh, Fran. How you make me laugh. Willy Dunne Wooters is sitting next to me, no doubt thinking, The ole girl has gone off her rocker at last.

    Love,
    Janie

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    1. And did you say to Willy Dunne Wooters, 'Keep up! That happened years ago!'?

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    2. I have no idea what this exchange means.

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  2. I forgot to say that the baby is beautiful.

    Love again,
    Janie

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  3. 20 months?!? But that seems barely 20 minutes ago!

    Loving your daughters facial expression and gameshow-style thumbs-up by the way. Somehow both inappropriate and spot-on at the same time.

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    1. Will you feel sorry for me if I say that all three of my kids make that gameshow-style thumbs-up gesture EVERY TIME there's a photo ...?

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  4. Congratulations to you all ! Phoebe's beautiful .

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    1. She is indeed. I'm going to meet her at the weekend... can't wait.

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  5. I've done quite a few things twice too, read a good many books twice for sure, usually because I remember I loved them first time round, but can't remember much of the story...girls? twice, boys? twice, married and divorced? also twice, you'd think I'd learn...

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    1. You're an expert at this!

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  6. Like Janie Junebug, I also forgot to say the baby is beautiful, just melts the heart she does.

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  7. Little Phoebe is beautiful, Fran.

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    1. Thanks, Martin. I am going to visit her for the first time tomorrow!

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  8. There are things that one only does once (I hope). Running out of petrol is one of them. Driving into a car that's parked right behind your driveway, in the turning circle, is another- when you're in a hurry to go and teach an evening class. As is ringing on your neighbours' doors to find out whose visitors' car it is, and to grovel. Being a Granny twice is, however, in my experience, a Very Good Thing. She's beautiful!

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    1. Other things to do only once: Teach a class of teenagers. Unfortunately, I didn't learn this particular lesson.

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  9. I haven't done some of these things once... like Karaoke or eat artichoke ( though have had it in a pulpy hot dip with parmesan & mayo... naughty but very nice )
    Not had grandchildren.
    Have got that God / Rabbit book... must read.
    Enjoy your visit with grandies ( not envious at all... )
    x

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    1. I'll be interested to know what you think of the God Rabbit book, BadPenny .. let me know when you've read it.

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    2. You might have to wait a while as I only really ever read on holiday when I get through several books and with no holiday imminent.......

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  10. I've been to several shops twice, the second time to apologise.

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    1. I can visualise all kinds of scenarios here!

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