We’ll be heading out in a minute to a play cafe, but as it doesn’t open until 9.45am, it’s pointless going out quite yetand as the kids are happily occupied drawing, it means I’ve got about 15 minutes to spare and as I don’t want to work on my NaNoWriMo (although it desperately needs it, I’m that behind) because I wouldn’t want to leave it after those 15 minutes were up, I thought I’d have a go off the hoof on Anonymom’s latest Motherhood Monday Fiction Meme and yes I know it’s Tuesday, the theme this week is playdate.
Ok, leaking toilets and Thomas the Tank Engine puzzles delaying things a bit.
Rebecca watched feeling as dejected as Lucy looked as she walked out of playgroup alone. The other children came out in gaggles of twos and threes, giggling and laughing, joining their mums as they chatted in groups by the gate. Those children had probably known each other since the maternity ward, had been in and out of each others houses like yo-yos, whereas nobody ever came to Rebecca and Lucy’s house, it would be too embarrassing.
Rebecca resolved to make a change, she couldn’t have Lucy going through life as friendless as she was. Maybe if Lucy could have some one to one time with somebody? That would mean though only one thing. She’d have to do it. Ok, that decided, who was she going to ask? Not one of the covens of women by the gate, no. Someone also on her own. Fredrick’s mum. Ok, she thought, here goes . . .
In stilted and nervous conversation on Rebecca’s side and surprise featuring heavily on the side of Fredrick’s mum, the playdate was arranged after playgroup the following Monday. That gave Rebecca according to her calculations, 72 hours to tidy up, if she subtracted just 15 hours for sleep and eating, she might just do it.
Lucy and her father saw little of Rebecca that weekend, shoeing them out of the door, she tidied and bustled and cleaned, ready for the grand first playdate. When Lucy and her father were there no one was allowed to touch or breath on a thing. It came to the final morning, when Lucy was at playgroup, only 1 hour to go till the playdate and there was still that big pile of toys that didn’t have anywhere to live. Rebecca toyed with the idea of gathering them all up in a large bin bag and leaving them for the dustman but that actually wouldn’t leave many toys left for Lucy, as the floor was where Lucy’s toys lived, they didn’t have much space in their tiny flat for storage. So picking out a few choice toys for Lucy and Michael to play with, Rebecca spent the rest of the hour utilising the only storage space she had left, under the beds, under the sofa, everything went.
The playdate was a reasonable success, yes the conversation a little stilted and Lucy a little shy but still not bad for a first attempt and then it was time to go.
“Fredrick darling, what have you done with your shoes?” asked his mum.
There was no sign of the shoes and poor Fredrick couldn’t leave without his shoes.
“Oh he’s probably put them under the sofa or a bed” said his mum “he’s very neat and tidy like that.”
“Oh it’ll probably be the sofa then” said Rebecca panicked “I’ll check for you” she said hurriedly.
Rebecca checked under the sofa, there was no sign of the shoes amidst the detritus.
“I’ll check under Lucy’s bed” called out Fredrick’s mum, already steaming out of the room.
Rebecca reached the doorway of Lucy’s room just as Fredrick’s mummy was bending over to look under the bed, just as Fredrick’s mummy said “Oh dear.”