Monday 7 June 2010

The Bad Beginning

In general I don't think people blog much about bad days, things going wrong, etc. I can tell you why, it's because they don't have time. I decided to make some time anyway.

Our story starts with us looking forward to a holiday in Scotland which we began planning nine months ago, involving some much needed hiking along the West Highland Way. All should be going like clockwork, because I began planning and booking (mostly) before accommodation started running out. I was extra pleased that we managed to arrange to have our house painted while we were gone, even though it meant emptying our bedrooms and bathroom and packing, all pretty much on the last day. That's a lot of work.

Then it turned out that against my will and better judgement Mike had to take Antonia to Paris 2 days before the start of the trip to see some relatives who couldn't possibly come down to us because a) they don't like mountains and b) it just wasn't convenient for them, but they were damn well going to throw a tantrum if they didn't see her. So off he went with her, leaving at 4.30 am and returning at midnight.

I must admit, my main fear was that she would be exhausted. I didn't anticipate that he would get food poisoning/gastric flu (diagnosis pending). So on the last day before our trip, with my intended teammate basically unable to remain vertical, I canned all the activities designed to enhance my comfort and wellbeing (such as getting my hair neatened up) and focused on the essentials.

As I was working on the string of endless tasks I hadn't time for I remembered that Antonia had a dance class that evening. Suddenly even the essentials were compromised and I was left with a choice between leaving clean or leaving adequately rested. I've chosen leaving clean, so to hell with sleeping, I might as well blog!

Anyway, I was sort of coping under the strain when said relatives, you know, the ones who just have to see Antonia, but at their convenience, not ours, suddenly remembered that the day they had picked to tear my husband and daughter away and wreak havoc in our lives was my wedding anniversary. I had very sensibly forgotten and when they reminded me of it with an email, it did nothing for my composure.

Now, if it seemed like things couldn't possbly get any worse, what happens at 8.00pm but that Antonia gets stung by a wasp that accidentally flew into her sandal. Fortunately, she's not allergic, but it's in a sensitive place for someone who's supposed to be walking 20km a day starting very soon. I'm watching the pink, swollen patch nervously.

Also, Mike has a fever, which suggests something infectious that can last a fortnight and which we can all catch. I'm feeling a bit woozy myself, but I'm hoping it's just exhaustion. Tomorrow, before 7 am, we leave for what is basically 36 hours of traveling without a place to rest our heads. Then we start the hike. Maybe...

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