Friday was the kind of day that can make you want to give up, go home and get into bed! Or at least have strong drink at the end of it, which I am not currently able to do.
It all began with the weather being a heavy drizzle (for those of you who are reading this in countries with sensible weather, you may not know that just as the eskimos have about nine words for snow, we British have mini-dictionaries dedicated to terms for the weather, including regional variations in terms for the same thing. For example, what I would call heavy drizzle (or just plain shit weather), my husband from Scotland would refer to as "a wetting rain"). Heavy drizzle, low skies, enough for your wool coat to really get quite wet in the time it takes to put a child seat into a car parked in the street.
I had purposefully set the alarm to get up early enough to be able to put some washing on, have a shower, feed two year old and myself, get dressed and out of the door by 8.45am in order to attend a "Kidagility" class at our local leisure centre. For 15 months plus, this is basically bouncing on mini-trampolines and practicing your jumping up and down skills, and sounded right up our two year old's street.
We managed to leave at 9am, only 15 minutes late, and drove through the drizzle to the traffic jam at the end of the road for the morning rush hour. It took us 30 minutes to drive about three miles (too far to walk, and too wet to even consider it) to the leisure centre, so when we arrived we were already slightly late. Class fully booked. Me and about five other mothers with two year olds sadly turned away, or offered a slot at 10.30 which I couldn't go to.
We went instead to the shops to get new swimming costume, goggles and arm bands for two year old so that we could swim later in the week. In our haste to pack up and leave Kazakhstan, and given that we thought I might be in premature labour at the time, my packing list did not extend to things like swimming costume and accessories for the little one, so once again I am re-buying items which I already own in another world.
Dashed home for a rather pointless visit by a health visitor from our local doctor's surgery. While I miss having any medical support when we live in Kaz, I am also slightly concerned to see that our wonderful National Health Service is wasting so much money on silly services that people don't really need.
Managed to shoe-horn two-year-old back into her all in one red plastic rain suit (she looks like Po from the Tellytubbies, if you know them) and set off for our second session at the local library's Rythmn and Rhyme lesson. The librarian had been so welcoming the first week we attended, I thought she might be disappointed if all her good work was not rewarded with an enthusiastic follow up visit.
We arrived as everyone was putting their offspring back into their plastic rain proof suits. Half an hour too late, my mistake, missed the session completely. So I decided to stay and read from the amazingly large selection of children's books that are there. Little one and I had a lovely time, read many books, and while doing so, I managed to sit, with my chair leg, heavily, on the mobile phone that was in my coat pocket on the floor. Realised this as I tried to call home to get a lift home because it was still raining so hard outside. The phone came off worse in the chair leg experience and is utterly destroyed.
Discovered that I had obviously not moved my contacts from Phone to SIM and so appear to have lost all my phone numbers for the UK, carefully collected over three years.
Went to see a place for us possibly to rent when husband the remaining kids come over to the UK for the birth of our new arrival. It was a lovely cottage but significantly smaller than we could use, actually with not enough beds for all our current family members, let alone new baby's moses basket. But in its favour, it is in a great location and with mobile phone reception, internet etc so hopefully we will be able to cram in there. For a month!
Drove through the rain again for 30 minutes to go to the mobile phone shop one mile away. Slipped on a sloping travelator (flat escalator) in the car park because it was so wet pulling muscle in my thigh, but fortunately not crashing to the floor. It is too complicated to simply get a new phone here. Left the shop with a new USB cable in order to download software and fix my spare dodgy phone (which switches off whenever anyone calls me and I answer it). Got home, found that I cannot insert the phone USB cable at the same time as using my dongle for the internet - dongle too wide and blocking second USB slot. Decided to download software and then install to phone later when off line. Spent nearly two hours downloading software, only to find it is not mac-compatible. Grrrr! Phoned T-mobile service provider - shut for the day. Tried another number where lines were open but they were undergoing a system upgrade, so could not order a new phone until Monday. Yawn.
This took me through to about 9pm and I was feeling weary, man! Went to bed and fretted. Got up at midnight and farted around on the internet for another two hours until I was so exhausted I could only sleep! Goodbye Friday.