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Sunday, August 17, 2014

As part of my long term recovery plan of peaceful relaxation, I decided to take Amelie to an indoor play centre yesterday. It just screamed convalescence. With the emphasis on the screaming. To be honest, having got there and been faced with the prospect of a hundred caged five-year-olds running amok on a climbing frame, I decided to wait in the car with the engine running.

Amelie had been invited to (another) party at Westows, but as luck would have it, we weren't obliged to remain on the premises, as long as we didn't hold the play centre liable if she died. So with a spring in our step, we headed into Hove to spend ridiculous amounts of money on the children.

We bought Toby's last pair of shoes at the end of May, and he's managed to wear them out within three months. We should let him travel by bus more often, instead of making him walk everywhere. So with Amelie busy scuffing her shoes on a range of giant slides, we ventured back to Clarks Kids to have Toby fitted for another pair. Amelie needed new school shoes, but we already had the measure of her, so were able to pick these up for only £34...

They've got flashing lights, which I think act as some kind of warning that you're spending too much.

As for Toby, the assistant measured his feet, which was slightly embarrassing as they smell like Italian cheese, and announced that he's a 6G. Which is the future of mobile phones. Having browsed the range of three styles available in his size, we eventually settled on these for £32...

According to the Clarks website, they have a "jet plane inspired casual style". Although putting a propeller on a jet plane is not so much casual as sloppy. Anyhoo, it's a pleasure to spend sixty-six quid just to shod my children for a few more months. I wonder if it's too late to adopt Zola Budd and Sandie Shaw..? Personally I think we should just buy one pair between the two of them, and teach them both to hop.

The good news, however, is that I'm far less expensive. Having got myself into debt for the sake of the kids, I decided to do even more to Save the Children, by visiting the charity shop around the corner. A couple of weeks ago, I bought a three piece suit (clothing, not furniture) from there, which had come from Stanley Ley, a legal outfitters in London, who make clothes for barristers and people with good judgement. Brand new, I wouldn't have got much change out of a thousand pounds, but I picked it up for ten quid. I'm saving it for when I next appear in court.

So yesterday, I decided to go back there to see if they had any more. Or failing that, a judge's wig. And sure enough, I managed to buy this...

It's a Romanian slave. He doesn't speak any English, but he's impeccably dressed, and works like a demon.

Well, ok, the bloke wasn't actually included. But I did buy the suit. It's from Marks & Spencer, made of pure Italian wool, features a cupro lining (don't ask), and retails for three hundred pounds. As it happens though, it was actually a different suit I was interested in. They also had an M&S Collezione suit in dark navy, which I tried on in the changing rooms, and eventually decided to buy. I don't actually wear suits very often, but when I do, I like to have a choice of about twelve, so it seemed like a reasonable purchase.

It was priced at £10, and with Lisa and Toby standing at the door of the shop, informing me that we had to go and pick up Amelie now, I suddenly spotted the suit on the left. It was the same price, same size, and even nicer. But I had no time to try it on. So I panicked. And in a fit of charitable goodwill, I decided to buy both.

While Lisa checked her watch, I rushed up to the till, handed the suits to the man, and as he looked at them admiringly, he said "Clothes are buy-one-get-one-free today. So that'll be ten pounds for the two".

You can't argue with value like that. So I didn't. Although I did feel slightly guilty. Still, I'm sure you can save a lot of children for ten quid. Not mine though, obviously. That would barely keep them in shoelaces.

So having dressed myself and the kids, I looked at Lisa in her sackcloth, and decided to take everyone to Portslade to have their hair done. And it was definitely money well spent. I couldn't actually get a picture of them all with their new hairdos, as Toby was busy looking for buses, Amelie was looking for flowers, and Lisa was looking to stay out of the photo...

But trust me, they all looked very nice. I'll be proud of them when they're visiting me in the poorhouse.


Phil's Mum said...

For someone trying to relax and get better, THAT was a busy and stressful day!