I’ve never liked thunder storms, but I think they’re growing on me. Before 9am this morning I’d packed up a picnic and was all set to head to the seaside for a bike ride with the boys. Not me on a bike, obviously, although I often hanker for a fancy purple bike with a comfortable seat. All morning we kept waiting for the rain to stop, and it did, then it started again, then it stopped again, you get the gist. So eventually at 11.30 my optimism kicked it, we’ll go and find Daddy for his lunch hour, I decided, have our picnic with him. The afternoon WILL be dry and sunny I assured myself. I packed the boys’ rain coats just incase. We surprised Daddy at work, I was brave, I parked on the university campus and attempted to walk to his office. I was concerned about walking into the wrong office, especially as all the buildings, corridors and doors all look the same to me. We got a few looks and smiles as we entered the foyer, abandoned 2 small boys’ bikes and set off down one of the rabbit warrens towards a voice that I hoped, but wasn’t sure, was Jon’s. It was, ta-daa! We’ve found Daddy. After a brief show and tell of Daddy’s desk, and colleagues, we finally had our picnic, in the dry. Good, I thought, it’s going to plan.
We said goodbye to Daddy’s university and boldly headed for the coast, I love living so close to the sea, just a short 10-15 minute drive and we’re at a pebbled, often smelly, but also beautiful part of the Kentish coast. It’s always so quiet too during the week, the DFLs (down from London) aren’t crowding the place, and the youths are supposedly getting educated, so the skate park on the sea promenade is ours. A small-bike-rider’s paradise. But it rained. We stayed in Colin Car, hoping it would stop, and it did, so we got out, got togged up, and it started again and didn’t stop. Sod it, I chirped, let’s ride, they’ll be fine. It’s only raining a bit.
The chaps had a marvellous time, cornering too fast, risking life and limb on every slippery corner, screeching and wailing in joy. Then it rained much harder, and a huge puddle very quickly formed in the centre of the park, splish, splash, splosh!
I was so wet I couldn’t get any wetter. And no I wasn’t wearing a see through t-shirt and looking sexy and glamorous like the famous rain scene in Four Wedddings and a Funeral I looked like this…
And then, after what seemed like a glorious period of sheer drenched joy there came a flash. The boys had just sped down a slope, I knew what was about to happen… the loudest crack and rumble of thunder happened. I knelt down, in a puddle, spread my arms as widely as I could, and braced myself. I quickly had 1 crying and 1 screaming boy wrapped tightly under each arm. My God we were wet. Rufus was screaming, “Go home go go I want to go home go go,” and Eddie had gone white, and quiet, you couldn’t see his tears on his already wet face but they were there. I calmed them down and we swiftly made our way back to the car.
2 more bright flashes and huge bangs, right above our head later, we were at the car. Ruru was in such a panic to get into Colin, and whilst flailing his floppy arms around trying to get his coat off he dropped his beloved Emily train, it bounced off the curb, under the car. Lord did he scream, oh the panic and fluttering, “Calm down”, I urged, “you’re safe.” I then got down onto the flash-flooded road, laid down and rescued Emily train. I got into the car, phew, and took off my drenched coat that was no longer functioning correctly. Shit! I haven’t strapped my children in! There was no way I was easing my sticky skin back into my coat, so I got out in just my t-shirt and the hail began. I could feel hard bits of ice hitting and sliding down my bare back as I strapped them in. Custard Creams issued to those in the back and finally departure was an option. I drove bare-footed back home to where the roads and paths were dry as a bone, just a localised storm then was it? Thanks Mrs Nature because it was all actually really fun, and strangely lovely, an adventure. Yes, I think I could quite like storms, but I think I need my boys with me to make me feel brave.