We are about to be Space Invaded

Saskia the Space Invader

Next week if you listen carefully you will hear the collective sigh of millions of parents knowing that their little darlings are back in school for another year. No more hunting for cheap things to do to keep the kids occupied.

I had almost forgot what it was like to keep kids occupied, ours fled the nest years ago. I can only imagine that in this day and age it is even more of a challenge. In this age of instant everything kids have forgot what it is like just to sit and do nothing. My granddaughter can manage about five minutes before she visibly starts twitching looking for the next thing to do.

Now she will be staying with us for the next couple of weeks whilst her mum goes into hospital so I can expect my workload to quadruple during this period. On Saturday she came with her list of things she needs to do just to survive for the couple of weeks at our humble abode. Bearing in mind she thinks we live in a technological black hole and she questions how can we survive without what she considers essentials.

Its the amazement in her voice when she found out our shortcomings. “What do you mean you don’t have Sky catchup”, “Isn’t your broadband slow” and the unforgettable “When you die Granddad and can I have your Mac”? All this from an eleven year olds lips.

She will arrive next Monday with various iPads, iPods, hair straighteners and enough clothes to keep her going for six months. Also she will bring her beloved Saxophone which for some unknown reason she likes to practice when I am watching something.

Now I know I am sounding very grumpy but the plus side of having young people around the house is the energy and laughter it brings and that is no bad thing. I think I am lucky in the fact that the job I do brings me into contact with young people everyday and it’s fantastic.

Just to sit and listen to them and try to work out the reasoning behind some of the discussions they have is brilliant. The what colour should I have my hair done this week conversation is a personal favourite of mine, mainly because I have hardly any left and if I did I wouldn’t dye it anyway.

Now I know that you will find this hard to believe I was once young and can remember a particular conversation I had with my dad after another weekend of treating his house like a hotel and not letting them know I was staying at a mates.

I can remember turning to him and saying “dad, I am eighteen and you just don’t know the pressure I am under”. To this day I don’t know why he didn’t batter me senseless. I am now at the age he was then, and if I knew what life throws at your average fifty odd year old then, I think I might have kept very quiet.

So think of me this coming fortnight, bringing in horses, running her to guides, listening to her playing her Sax, homework and not being able to use my computer because she will have commandeered it like she does every time she comes.

The surprising thing to me and my wife is that we wouldn’t have it any other way because when she is here she is great fun and at our age being around that is priceless.


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