Shaken, But Stirring

Ma’s eyes lock with the butcher’s. It’s a match made in Hell, the meeting of two naughty minds. Ma’s obviously feeling chirpy again, after our accident, and is ready for some serious flirting. Our butcher, a fine figure of a man with a wicked glint in his eye, is more than up to the challenge. Neither of them wants to be the first to look away. As the conversation grows ever more risqué, I’m the only one blushing. They’re still at it as I grab our purchases and drag Ma out the door.

Whilst Ma’s on the mend, Tom and I are still feeling pretty shaken. Tom’s been a tad on the snappy side (you know it’s true!) whilst I seem to have lost a few layers of skin and see danger lurking round every corner. The stupidest thing reduces me to tears. Whilst hacking away at some overgrown clematis at the end of the garden (must be feeling unlike myself to be gardening) I uncover a tiny nest, beautifully lined with moss and downy feathers. Inside are four perfect, dazzling blue eggs and I am horrified to have exposed them to the elements. Even when I gently touch them and find them long cold, I can’t shake off the feeling that it’s my fault that they’ll never hatch.

So, instead of floating about being swept around by the currents, I try to regain control of my life. Running helps, a constant, mesmeric rhythm that lifts me to a place beyond worry. Writing, because I’m a much happier person when I’m putting words together. And, hey, I’ve even got round to sending stuff out, including entering the Mslexia poetry competition (but with no foetus, scrotum, penis or slaughtered pig in my entire 22 lines, I’m not hopeful).

And finally, some lighter news...
Last Friday, I visited the lovely Helena Earnshaw at Honno to collect my prize for the Coming of Age One Sentence Competition. Helena made me feel very welcome, said lovely things about me, and put me at ease so that I could be photographed collecting my prize without frightening everyone. I now have a year’s supply of Honno’s very fine books (they always look so beautiful, apart from anything else) which is a real treat. Thanks, Helena, for providing an oasis of calm in a rather fraught week.

And, last night, I had a phone call from my darling Rose. She has just received her invitation to the formal ceremony at St James’s Palace to collect her Duke of Edinburgh Gold Award and she has asked me to be her guest. Aw! Since I am Mrs Boo-baby at the moment this called for a few more tears. Guess who’s going to be bursting with pridiosity at the beginning of June? My only slight worry is that I now have to find something to wear so as not to let the side down. I currently own one Funeral Frock and a lot of jeans and tee shirts. I’d say, someone call Gok, but I don’t think this is an occasion to bring out the ‘bangers’ (perish the thought). Ah well, at least it seems to have taken my mind off motorway accidents.

Painting is 'Winter Seascape, Dusk' by Tom Tomos


elizabethm said…
I am not surprised you are a bit weepy and wobbly after that (a bit surprised and impressed that your mother is already recovered enough for a quick flirt with the butcher though!)
How exciting about Rose, that should be a grand distraction.
Sally's Chateau said…
Sorry to hear of your accident Chris but well done on the award, Mother must be on the mend to flirt with the butcher !!
Celtic Heart said…
It looks as though you have positive things starting to happen again. It takes a while to get over the shock of such a trauma. Glad to know that Ma is recovered enough to be causing you such a state of embarrassment! I am squirming for you!

p.s. do you get a discount with the butcher now?
Debs said…
Loved the thought of Ma and the butcher, brilliant.

I'm not surprised you feel weepy, you had one hell of a fright, but at least you have a wonderful occasion to look forward to in June. How special that will be.x
Frances said…
Chris, all that you write about being still shaken seems so natural. All the comfort that you are taking from doing what you love, collecting the award from Honno, and from hearing the fabulous news from Rose, will certainly ease you towards fresh and more welcome memories.

Preseli Mags said…
I'm not surprised to hear you're still feeling shaken after your ordeal. Lovely to hear Rose's news and about the Honno presentation. All those lovely books! xx
Jude said…
Brilliant,I hope I'll still be flirting when I reach my mum's age...she does!
Fabulous news about Rose.
Yes, I remember being scared stiff in a car, slamming my foot on the brake even when I'm in the passenger seat, scaring the driver to bits. As I had careered? off the road and down into a ravine I was scared of going down that road again or going anywhere near the edge of road.Tears....??? Yep!!Gallons!!But it gets better, honest, keep running.!
It does get better, honestly, and
Elizabethd said…
After shock can last for a long time, and emotions and tears leap out just when you werent expecting them, and usually at an embarrassing moment.
It passes.
Go find a super LBD to wear, and shine for your Rose.
Faith said…
It'll take a while to get over the accident. I always love to see Tom's paintings on your blog. Wish I could've seen the nest, maybe it was a Dunnocks, they lay blue eggs.
Flowerpot said…
Of course you're wobbly after that near miss - you're bound to be.But it will fade and pass and life will pick up again. Brilliant news about Rose though - proud Mum you!
spoil sport - dragging ma away from the butcher! Just concentrate on finding the outfit for June and keep running - the nasties will fade in time.
ChrisH said…
Elizabthm. My Ma is very resilient (sigh!). Yes, lovely about Rose, thank you.

Hi Sally, thank you. Yes - see above!

CH... we did get an exceptionally large piece of pork (no comment).

Debs, neither of these experiences are ones I'd care to repeat!!

Frances, wise words. Have kept up the running and its helping.

Mags, the books are fab, very thrilled.

Jude, I'm glad it gets better, that's good to hear. But flirting, no - I'll never be as accomplished as ma!

Elizabethd, thank you - I'm surprised at how shaken I've been. Don't know about shining! So long as I don't let her down!

FP, thanks - yes I am soooo proud!

Faith, what a clever old sausage you are, I think it is a Dunnock nest (or was, poor things).

SBS, thanks for visiting when you are such a busy shepherdess. Yes, I'll worry about the outfit instead, yikes!
Pipany said…
I would be weepy too after what you went through Chris. Don't be too hard on yourself and take it easy if you can. You'll have a great time with Rose and have a great excuse for blubbing as much as you like xx
Un Peu Loufoque said…
Look I already offered to lend you a hat and Madame grognonne says you can borrow her best apron if you don't spill gin on it so don't worry!!
Milla said…
poor you, I do sympathise, time's your chum here, time and distraction. And what IS it with butchers?? Is it the dressing up, the hat and apron? Oo er.
BT said…
You will be wobbly, Chris, of course you will. Just take it easy and life will improve and get back to normal (whatever that is)!! In the meantime, how super to have won that prize and what a day you have to look forward to with Rose. Go and get a fantastic outfit and have a brilliant time. Oh, and keep running, but I know you will anyway.
Hugs across the sea.
Pondside said…
Of course you're a bit shaky, Chris - you've had a big shake-up.
What lovely news about Rose. You'll do her proud!
Salle de Bain said…
Sorry to hear about the motorway incident.'s terrifying isn't it? You are bound to feel shaky for a while.

Hilarious about the butcher...
My mother used to do her hair and put her lipstick on before visiting our village butcher.. reckoned she always got an extra faggot and a better cut of steak when she did!!
LittleBrownDog said…
I don't know what it is with butchers - our's is just the same - just don't mention the sausage machine or you'll set him off. Must be all that red meat, I suppose.

And, yes, of course you'll be feeling fragile after your brush with the hard shoulder of the M4 only last week. Great about the award, though. xxx
Anonymous said…
Oh I think that could be fun having to find a new outfit. How proud you must be, what a marvellous achievement.

CJ xx
Fennie said…
You must be very proud of Rose. Bet you'll have a tremendous day! Your find of the nest of blue eggs has resonance in that starlings have occupied our attic again for the first time in two years and yesterday there was a blue eggshell, neatly pecked in two, below the nest. Another months and they'll all be squawking furiously.
Lane said…
I was thinking of you after your incident and wondering how you were coping with the after effects. Glad you managed to put those jitters to bed, although I know that they strike at the oddest moments (like sad bird's nest exposure).

Now pridiosity. Is this a Chris-ism? Excellent word and I can see why you're bursting with it:-)
ChrisH said…
Dear all, sorry, have been a bit tardy catching up. Busybusybusybusy.

Pip, no would not dream of blubbing in front of Rose - don't want to let the side down!

UPL - what about whisky stains? Could she put up with that?

Milla, sigh, they're all the same, aren't they??

BT, (my gardening inspiration!). Good point! What is normal?! I've been for a run today and felt good! Hurrah!

Pondside, thanks, yes, it's nice to have my day with Rose to look forwards to.

SdB, I'm not even going to tell Ma that! There'll be no stopping her and she'll be in there asking for a large chop.

LBD - I can only think it is something to do with all the red meat - but I'm certainly not going to let Ma near your butcher. The thought of her flirting with a man wielding a sausage machine makes me feel quite faint.

Fennie, I love starlings, but not in my attic - what a thought! And I know everyone loves house martins but not me! The constant chatter under the eaves, not to mention the droppings all over the steps, drives me mad!

CJ, I forgot to factor in Roses' thoughts on the matter in my excitment so will have to co-ordinate with her. Decisions, decisions!

Lane, pridiosity has been in general use between Rose, Lily and me, as we are vair, vair, influenced by the marvy confessions of Georgia Nicholson as told to Louise Rennison in gems such as 'Angus, thongs and Full-Frontal Snogging' and 'Dancing in my Nuddy-Pants' to name but two great titles.
Exmoorjane said…
But honey, of COURSE you're still feeling shaky...would be weird if you weren't....
Hmm sounds like I would be right at home with the Mslexia competition! Shame I can't write poetry......
Keep calm and carry on. Big hug.
Expat mum said…
Phew - just read previous post. Definitely deserving of a new frock at the very least!
ChrisH said…
Jane, ah, go on, write that poem! We want to read it! And thank you.

Expatmum, thank you, too. Hmm, developments on the frock front.

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