Mission: Impossible

16 Jan

If someone had said to me this morning that my mission today would be to survive for as long as possible with just one baby, one almost-out-of-battery smartphone and a car fuelled by roughly two wine glasses full of petrol I would have said forget it. I’m staying in bed. Put the kettle on, would you?

Little did I know, when I volunteered to drop my husband at the train station at 9.15am, that it would be around five hours before I was back in my house. If I had realised this I would probably have had a shower and brushed my hair. I would most definitely have bothered putting on a bra, and ditched the flip flops.

It was roughly four minutes after R’s train departed on its 120 mile trip that I realised coming out without my gigantahandbag had been a bad idea. Especially when said handbag, containing all my bank cards, cash, nappies and the only set of keys to our house in the whole of Dorset, was now deadlocked in the hallway next to the buggy thanks to my security conscious (and rightly so) other half.

I drove home at about 14 miles per hour to conserve petrol (apologies to all who got stuck on the neverending single carriageway behind me), parked the car as close to our Wifi access as I could get and started googling locksmiths. My phone helpfully informed me it had 20% battery life left.

The first locksmith lived around the corner but was on a job 20 miles away all day. The second was an hour away. He got the gig.

It was around that time I realised the baby had last eaten at 6.30am. This meant I was about seven minutes away from a major infant meltdown.

Time to channel How to be a Woman author Caitlin Moran, who claims that she once managed to get from Crouch End to Downing Street for an interview within half an hour on a Tube strike day when her cab didn’t turn up – because she’s a MUM and mums can do anything.

Resisting the urge to fall to booze, I called a friend (15% battery) and drove (slowly) over to his house to borrow 69p for a carton of formula milk. Once I got to the chemist I realised I had nothing to actually feed the baby with and no money to buy something – which meant a call to another friend (10% battery) to borrow a milk bottle.

While all this was happening the locksmith spent two hours doing battle with our locks in vain, keeping me up to date on the phone (5% battery). He was essentially on his own outside our house hacking away at the street door for most of that time. Interestingly, nobody called the police but hey, I have already told you our neighbours are a bit mad.

Ordinarily I would be proud of our little Fort Knox but today I cursed every tooth in the fucking-five-barrel-super-bastard-proof-lock on our front door. The locksmith was just about to give up when we came up with a rather genius solution. If I told you what it was I might as well list myself on pleaserobme.com so all I’ll say is that it was a similar trick somebody used recently to nick my mate’s Mini Cooper. This leaves me in the odd position of feeling strangely grateful to the criminal underworld today.

With spectacular timing, the phone died just as I walked in to the hallway, like the best expendable heroes in the action movies. The baby, who had by this point miraculously fallen asleep in the car, was put in his cot without waking up. I celebrated this almighty victory by studiously ignoring the calls of the wine rack and mashing up an avocado for the baby’s lunch. Because Caitlin was right – I am also a MUM and this is what we do. Stupid aren’t we?

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3 Responses to “Mission: Impossible”

  1. Mrs Pop January 16, 2012 at 8:47 pm #

    Awesome. Congratulations on surviving!

  2. The Coffee Table Years January 17, 2012 at 3:56 am #

    I’ll be honest and tell you that I laughed at your misfortune, but only because it sounds so much like the kind of thing I would do. Except that I wouldn’t have a phone with me that would have anything as fancy as the internet. My phone, circa year 2000, has been without battery since I forgot the charger in a hotel room over Christmas. Still haven’t bothered to replace it. Hey-ho.
    Glad you finally got in and survived. I’d have headed straight for the liquor and bypassed the wine.

  3. zskdorset January 18, 2012 at 9:27 pm #

    Needless to say today I went out armed with everything but the kitchen sink – and the baby was hysterical all day. Maybe he needs more drama in his life!

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