I don’t want to wish my kids’ lives away, but I’m practically counting the days until Crox Minima leaves primary school this summer and goes to high school in the autumn. Why? Because primary schools seem to be the number one source of contagion round here – and Crox Minima’s school is the most pestilent of any school I have ever come across. A week or two ago the little cherub brought home the most vile cold I’ve had in ages – but this last weekend has been the kicker, a totally ghastly winter vomiting bug that’s floored all of us. At the moment I ache all over; the slightest exertion makes me break out in a cold sweat; and I feel like I’ve got courtesy legs*.
I’ve had enough.
High Schools are great. Crox Minor prinks gaily off to her academy of secondary learning each morning, and gallops back again in the evening, and we parents have hardly any cause to enter the premises.
Primary, schools, though, are different. Because Crox Minima’s school is way out in the boonies, she has to be chauffered there and back, and there is perforce a certain amount of time spent hanging around in the chilly playground with the Scrummies**, many of who have even smaller children in tow, these little vectors of disease darlings having as yet no idea about personal hygiene. School playgrounds, I deem, provide empirical support for the hygiene hypothesis, or for the contention that whatever doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.
To cap it all, after another long and painful night, we were visited by our builders who finally wanted to make a start knocking bits off the Maison Des Girrafes, which in the next two or three months is to be converted into the Palazzo di Girrafi.
Now, watch carefully. Here is a rare back view of the Maison Des Girrafes, taken from a Standard Location. Over the next few weeks the conservatory will be replaced by a two-storey extension. I’ll be posting pictures as the works progress.
But Norfolk builders are lovely. They took pity on us and said they’d come back tomorrow instead. Even better, they took pity on us with rich, warm, Norfolk accents – the kind of accent that makes you feel calm and reassured. I could listen to it all day. Bootiful.
* You know when you take your car to the garage for a service and they lend you a ‘courtesy car’ that you can drive, just about, but the controls are all in the wrong places? Courtesy legs are just like that, only with legs, not cars.
** Scrummies = School Run Mummies. School Run Daddies are included on sufferance.
UPDATE: the conservatory has now been disassembled and is now disported at various scenic locations in the Jardin Des Girrafes. If anyone wants to buy it, remove it and re-erect it at their own location, make me an offer! It’s 3m deep and 4.2m wide.