It's me upstairs in my parents' bungalow!
When they said they had lofty ambitions, I didn't know they meant it literally. You could house twenty asylum seekers in that attic. Frankly it's bigger than my flat. Oh, and if I look a bit blurry, it's because I was swaying with vertigo. That's why my hand looks fat and I've got a double chin. No, really. When I'm standing still, I look like this. It's reassuring to know that I've been wearing the same shirt for the past three years. It means I still haven't lost any weight.
But anyhoo. Lisa and I made it along the south coast yesterday afternoon, via a traffic jam in Bexhill (why anyone would want to live there, I have no idea), to St Leonards-on-Sea. We passed a sign on the way which said 'Welcome to 1066 Country'. I read it out to Lisa, and she responded with "What does that mean?". I think she thought it was an advert for a radio station.
We successfully arrived at my parents' retirement pad shortly before it got too dark to see, and I have to say it's very nice. These are the steps down which they'll be falling when they're old and infirm...
Lisa very nearly took a tumble, but let's face it, she's always been a bit unsteady on her pins.
The bungalow's got three doorbells, two of which don't work, so you have a one in three chance of being let in (less if you're a Jehovah's Witness). Naturally we chose the wrong one. In fact we couldn't even find the front door, so if they're hoping to get any post at this place, they could be disappointed.
But through a mixture of persistance and brute force, we eventually gained entry, and were given the guided tour. It was very impressive. My Dad's bought himself a Dulux PaintPod, which is apparently "so quick and easy to use, you can now give a room a fresh new look in just a few hours", although we were there for six and nothing changed very much. He probably had it on the wrong setting. We could have offered to help, but Lisa was busy breastfeeding, and I was searching the loft for antiques. I don't know how old the place is, but the drawers are lined with a copy of the Radio Times from 1963, so I don't think it's new-build. I didn't unearth anything valuable, but I did find a polystyrene surfboard circa 1990. I'm not sure how much use my parents will get out of that, but it's there if they need it.
Anyhoo, Lisa and I may not have made it into central Hastings to revisit the land of my birth, but we did persuade my Mum to have Amelie while we popped to Tescos. We were loading up our trolley in the freshly baked cookies aisle when we received the message "I'm not very happy! Love, Amelie. xxxx". It's scary how young they start texting these days. Naturally we rushed straight back (via the cake section), and ran through the door of the bungalow five minutes later to find Amelie fast asleep. You can't believe a word that girl says. But it was a good learning experience. Next time we abandon our daughter, I'm turning my phone off.