To the man in beige trousers
My daughter started school September just passed. So in the run up to starting school, it was important to me to cherish the time we had being carefree and having lots of last minute fun in parks and seeing new places before school took over.
We had lots of activities planned as well as visiting friends and family. One day that sticks in my head for all the wrong reasons is when an old grumpy guy decided to insult my parenting abilities. So thank you old man for giving me this memory!
I met up with a good friend and her twins (3 year old) at the National Trust site Dunham Massey. A beautiful site with gorgeous grounds where deer roam. We took a picnic which we all thoroughly enjoyed. We had ice cream and drinks in the cafe. The paths are great for scooters, bikes and prams so it’s a big favourite for families. On the day we went it had been raining for the previous few days so like any parent we anticipated puddles and mud (can you see where this story is going yet!?). Waterproofs and wellies were the attire for the day. Now my daughter will tell you, she is not allowed to jump in puddles with her best shoes on, only with wellies. She will also tell you that you need to be careful you don’t splash people.
Now I always consider myself a little harsh when I restrict activities like ‘jumping in muddy puddles’ as the famous pink pig puts it. So on a day like this I say, what the hell go and jump in muddy puddles. Have fun kiddo.
So the day progresses on and the we decide it’s time for home. A lovely day had by all. So we head for the exit. At this point my friends son decides it not quite time for home and runs in the opposite direction but as we’re in no rush we hang about chatting as friends do. My friends twins nearby, Pud in the pram and Pops about 3 metres away from me.
The following all seemed to happen in slow motion. I turned around to see Pops with a smile as big as the puddle she was about to jump in. Only problem is the man in beige trousers is standing very close to the puddle! Just as I say, ‘no, Pops you can’t jump near people’, it was too late. It was done. My daughter still beaming, myself mortified. I said to Pops ‘that was naughty go and say sorry to that man, I think you’ve splashed him’, my daughter promptly went to say sorry to a now very grumpy looking man. The next bit stopped me in my tracks. He turned and spat out the words ‘I should think so, you silly little girl’. At this point my blood began to boil.
Anybody who knows me will tell you that I’m the sort of person to let things go and not cause a fuss. But in this case I couldn’t hold back. I said to him that it’s a park after a rainy day, it’s going to be muddy and kids will jump in puddles, I’m sorry she splashed you but she’s apologised. Please don’t talk to her like that’. He replied back to me, telling me that I should keep a closer eye on my children. I asked him if his children never jumped in puddles, he said ‘I always kept an eye on my children’. He then walked off before I could think of a response.
What’s more, my friend noticed that the splash on his very boring beige trousers was smaller than a five pence coin! ‘You pathetic man wearing beige trousers to a muddy park’ is something like what I wanted to say to him, well nearly. The exact phrase had a few more profanities in there!
So here is a warning to people who are allergic to children and are precious about their clothes. I’m glad you are allergic to children, I don’t want people like you near my children. I hope my children get you dirty if you venture somewhere they are most definitely going to be having fun. Lastly, please don’t think you have any right what so ever to tell me how to parent my children. You don’t know me and I’m happy I don’t know you!
You can read about our summer holiday adventures here.