Monthly Archives

August 2015

Musings

pivot

August 31, 2015

I have recently completed a furniture shift upstairs; I moved Conall into the box room and the two smallies into the bigger room. This required dismantling the bunks and making them into two single beds. I had planned this for awhile; it was keeping me awake at night but I knew I’d need another pair of hands and I was reticent to bring it up with himself because I had begged and yes, wept for those bunks a year previously. I drew plans, printed blueprints and used my feminine wiles, bringing it up at the right moment while passing him a beer.

He put up a half-arsed argument about the room being too small etc but I shushed him (Marilyn Monroe style) and he was putty in my hands.

alan-keys-17245580There was a frantic search for alan keys that on a normal day would inhabit every surface of the house; I stepped up in my role as dictator, I mean overseer of the operation and shouted instructions at my browbeaten husband. The beds were placed side by side and my heart sank as I thought “shit the room is too small and how long do I continue with this charade before putting the bunks back together?” Ossie looked at me quizzically and I went into damage control mode; “Of course it looks small now but with some rearranging it’ll be just perfect”.

629d31d709208eee4d4982bb843d2901With the donkey work done, he excused himself and I spent the next two days up to my armpits in clothes and hangers. The problem with having 3 kids of the same sex is trying to sort through their clothes; I have to look at each tag to check the age to see whose wardrobe it goes into. I can’t throw anything out or give it to charity as I have to keep it for the next in line. I love when Rian grows out of something because then it is gone, gone, gone!

I had some amazing space-freeing-up ideas.. I got a chest of drawers into the bottom of Conall’s wardrobe, result. The room still looks small but it’s liveable and the two smallies are super-cute in their twin beds at night giggling to each other and my big boy is happy to have his own space.

yellow ikea couchI get such a kick from moving furniture around and it’s all due to the queen of dissatisfaction, my mother. By the age of 4, I had lived in 4 houses (none of them rented), and I grew up with the threat of moving my whole life, although it took her another 30 odd years to get around to it. Our house was in a constant state of flux; I remember my Dad once with a lump hammer knocking down a dividing wall that must have pissed her off greatly. Couches were her thing and they would be replaced very frequently and moved to a different room almost weekly before moving on to a grateful relative (I’m hoping she gets sick of the gorgeous couch she currently has in her sitting room (pictured above, although not her sitting room,  she wouldn’t allow the clutter) although I know my sister also has her eye on it; she’s had it 3 years now, way past it’s expiry date). A conservatory was built and then torn down to make way for an extension that left us with approximately 5 inches of back garden (that was paved then decked, then cobble-locked). My Mam is not one for handbags or holidays but she loves to decorate and myhome.ie is aptly the home page on her laptop; she missed her calling in real estate. My sister is the same and I’ll often drop by and she’ll answer the door drenched in sweat saying she’s moving the bedrooms around (unless that’s code for something).

stuva-loft-bed-with-drawer-doors-white__0275594_PE413874_S4I have a new plan for Conall’s room that requires a mid-sleeper with a wardrobe and desk under it; it’s my mam’s fault as she cut a page out of the argos catalogue and told me to look for a similar one in ikea. She is now redecorating vicariously and once I’ve paid off my renovated fanny, I’ll start on the house.beer-wingsTonight is date night, a nice terminology for both of us being in the same room for more then 3 hours. I will get some alcohol and Remo’s chicken wings and when my lovely husband is slightly inebriated I will broach the subject although I do need a new couch too (seriously I’m washing the covers fortnightly and it’s threadbare and gross). I can’t even sit in my scuzzy sitting room any more, I just go to bed when the kids do as I’m depressed looking at the ripped wallpaper, broken lamps and stained everything else. Can someone please send a team of interior decorators from the telly to surprise do up my house (not Peter Andre though, it’d be hard to remove all that baby oil and tan off my new furniture) while I rest in a spa. My mam could oversee the whole operation.
Mummascribbles

 

Family, Motherhood

A bad day

August 25, 2015

I’m having a bad day. Mondays are generally bad because I’m tired after a weekend’s work and could do with a lie on but the kids don’t take that into consideration and wake me at 7am.

This morning I was ensconced in a comfy spooning situation with my husband who had only returned from working through the night when I heard the first of the thousand MAMs I would hear today.

giphy (7)I wearily put my feet on the floor and decided today was the first day since April that warranted a dressing gown. I put a cloth headband on to complete my glamorous attire and began the day emptying the potty, making food for the kids that wouldn’t be eaten by anyone but me (enroute to the bin), and muttering obscenities under my breath.

I glanced longingly at my laptop many times only to hear my captors shout and I would run in shushing and issuing threats. Koray was playing Harry Potter on the Xbox and kept shouting “Mam I’m stuck on a level” and I’d have to youtube a walkthrough and help him out while the potty trainee (95% there) peed like a pregnant lady.

tom-and-jerry-starsI found time between potty washing and youtubing to put a wash on and when it was done I grabbed the wet clothes to bring to the dryer, and I dropped a sock; I bent to retrieve it and when I straightened up I cracked my nose off the corner of the wall. I heard a crunch and saw stars, like in a Tom and Jerry cartoon. My face went completely numb and I thought shite, I’ve broken my nose, the only semi-decent feature on my face. In these circumstances I revert to being a child so I went upstairs and woke Ossie to have a weep. He had a look and told me I looked like Owen Wilson.

giphy (8)I had a shower and put some make-up on and feeling a little better took the kids to an indoor play area. It was the usual chaos of bursts of energy followed by sweaty shouts for snacks. I did manage to have a coffee with my friend Susan who told me she was very proud that a) I was drinking coffee and b) I hugged her (I have issues… awkward hugger). We confessed to each other about how shocking our parenting skills were and then almost got competitive I’m a bad mother… no I am… I’m worse. This led on to our favourite topic about how we’d do a Thelma and Louise but not drive off a cliff… just book into a hotel to sleep uninterrupted.

On the journey home I made a rookie mistake and let Conall and Koray sit next to each other. They were playing with my phone in between torturing each other. Conall likes to call Koray Corey and make him cry and Koray retaliates by calling him Conor. At one point they got so crazy that I screamed JESUS MARY AND JOSEPH I’LL MURDER THE BOTH OF YOU at which point I noticed Conall was holding my phone up and he said “Mam, someone’s on the phone for you”.. Fuck… I grabbed the phone and noticed it was my work number and realised I was expecting a call from my boss regarding me doing some work for the new parenting club, fantastic.

269-5053947024269-IDShot_225x225I got home, took some paracetamol for my aching nose and made them dinner (yes I ate most of it). I got them to bed and set to tidying some of the day’s carnage when Rian yelled for the potty. I picked it up without realising it was full and poured cold piss down the front of my Harry Potter nightdress and bare legs…. I didn’t get to clean it off for a good 10 minutes while doing the pee/ brushing teeth/ bedtime drink waltz.

I’ve come straight to bed to vent and regroup, Ossie is off tomorrow and he can spend some quality time with his progeny while I lie on my bed and stare at the ceiling vacantly for an hour… it’s the little things.

Mummascribbles

Aisling’s Choice; our family trip to turkey part 5

August 21, 2015

Surely I have nothing left to add about our holiday…maybe just one more post?

It wasn’t all about me buying jewelry, drinking and parading my sun-kissed (patchy red) body; I’m not sure if I mentioned that I had 3 kids with me, and the husband of course.

Dharma-Greg-dharma-and-greg-32171425-595-750On one of our first nights I talked himself into bringing us all to my absolute favourite restaurant, Somewhere Else on ladies beach. It seems like I had to do a lot of sweet talking in the two weeks but my husband is firmly grounded in realism and all things scientific. Did I mention that for Christmas he bought me a necklace with interchangeable planets which luckily got lost in the post? I am yang to his yin; Rachel to his Ross, Dharma to his Greg. I got all the little Von Trapps dressed and we set off. There was a brief showdown enroute due to Conall asking for a Minecraft t-shirt (this was pre grand-theft-auto-gate) which we bought without too much parental passive aggression because it was the start of the holiday in Kusadasi and we weren’t yet jaded.

some-where-else-2We were greeted by Orlagh’s husband and longtime friend of ours, Durmus (pronounced Durmush… like saying Dermot if you’re from D.4) and seated inside where we ordered our drinks and I had a gorgeous chilli beef salad.

A cirque de Soleil act ensued courtesy of our offspring;

Rian jumped out of the highchair to join (destroy) a game of pool

Conall spilt the drink we warned him he would spill on his new Minecraft T-shirt

Koray disappeared for a half hour to poo his pants in secret (under the pool table) which we didn’t noticed till we got back to the hotel and by which time it had absorbed nicely into the buggy fabric.

There was general mayhem and suffice to say we left the table and it’s surroundings like a rock band would leave a hotel room circa 1976.

Apart from the McDonalds incident we didn’t venture out for dinner again.

Towards the end of our trip, Ossie had to go to the dentist for the full day (implants) so I grabbed Orlagh like a lifeline and tried to think up a plan that would cause the minimum amount of damage to my blood pressure. I tried hinting at her taking them while I had a nap but either she didn’t pick up on my subtle hints (3 backpacks by their feet) or was daunted by the prospect. I had a brainwave.. “hey we’ll go to your house, order pizza and watch the cartoon network!”

The kids were happy for five minutes watching cartoons and then they started flinging grapes and terrifying the dog. The party ended when Conall and Koray went to pee and decided to cross swords (unbeknownst to me) and Koray was pissed on (literally). “Let’s take them shopping to Kipa (tesco)” I suggested reticently. There was an incident when Conall blocked the double buggy coming up the walkway and the situation got hairy as people piled up behind me and Orlagh before I pushed the little shit out of the way; not before an old man berated us.

We stocked up on toy boats and then brought them to the funfair.

Here I faced a Sophie’s Choice decision as I do most days when both Conall and Koray hopped into a bumper car each. The guy in charge said that they’d both need an adult. Orlagh was watching Rian. They both looked up at me with tears streaming down their faces as I sweated and displaced my anger at the innocent guy. I spotted little peddle boats and having ascertained that they could go on unaccompanied gave them the option… disaster averted. Koray and Rian had thrown their shoes in the fragrant buggy and were knee deep in dust. It took a solid hour to get them to the car, snotty and screaming for another ride (just like their daddy.. I hope he doesn’t read this post).

giphy (6)Orlagh couldn’t find her keys for ten insufferable minutes and I concussed myself on the car door. When we got back my new wife told me to put Rian to bed and she’d watch the other two in the lobby till I got back. I returned a half hour later and Conall asked could he go to the room for his tablet, and at the same time Koray asked would I download a game on the phone for him. Here I was Sophie again… Conall was pressing the button on the lift and shouting come on come on. I downloaded the game and it said insufficient space… fuck… I deleted half the shit on my phone and tried again.. still insufficient… MAM MAM MAM MAM THE LIFT… The lobby was full, I was soaked in sweat and I begged Koray to hang on 5 minutes; he started whimpering… I made my way to the lift and I was holding a full Ben bloody 10 and when I got there Conall was in the lift pressing the button repeatedly for the 5th floor. I could hear Koray’s cries escalating. I started to plead with Conall and the door shut on me… the cocktail flew in the air and clattered on the floor, not breaking though; I banged my arm and leg trying to catch it and bruised immediately. Some guests ran over and Conall legged it out of the lift screaming “she’s going to murder me”. I looked like an alcoholic rage-filled mother that was about to kill her kid for spilling her mojito. At this point Orlagh arrived and surveyed the scene; there was a mop and a crowd and she asked “what the hell happened.. I only left ya 5 minutes ago“(when reading this in your head adopt a culchie Carlow accent for realism). I said “Orlagh, I’m going to my room to order a bottle of wine and cry for an hour”. She nodded understandingly and I took a now meek Koray to the room with me.

FB_IMG_1439503188237She joined me later and we had some wine and when she was leaving asked could she see the boys. Each of them was sleeping and looked so sweet. We both teared up and agreed that they are amazing and rearing kids is worth all the crap that is slung at you literally and figuratively just to see them sleeping soundly at night recharging their batteries for the day of assholery ahead.


Yenges; our family trip to turkey part 4

August 20, 2015

Family holidays are about managing your expectations; it is never going to live up to your hazy memories of pre-kid vacations. You will not be able to bake yourself in the sun while sipping cocktails and dreaming of your night-time apparel. Your wardrobe is secondary to the kids; they will all be presented like the Von Trapps in the evening as you follow them like a sweaty Maria, baby wipes in hand. I watched young couples and girls (I sound like a mad pervert) with envy as they swam carefree in the pool but I also felt a bit smug as I knew one day they would possibly be in my situation and I would be like the serene older lady that liked to get the evening sun in the shallow end. She was like Yoda, I was drawn to her calmness and she told me that 11 years previously she had holidayed in Turkey with 3 young kids and that now they didn’t want to travel with her. I bathed in her solitude (kinda literally) and she assured me that one day my kids would think I was an asshole.

I clung to the knowledge that I would have one night out… the Tuesday as Orlagh had Wednesday off. I put on the little red number I’d bought in Penneys for the occasion only to realise it was completely sheer and my underwear is not the type for exhibiting. I had a long black dress I put on while my male audience gave me lots of compliments except the husband who was worried people would think he’d stopped being an atheist and was trying to get me to cover up. I did my best with makeup and hair while sweating profusely, and repeatedly asking Ossie if he’d manage. He told me to go and not to make any contact and that he’d be in touch if it was serious like a fire or convulsions; this didn’t help my mammy guilt one bit.

I took a scarlet selfie waiting on the lift and waited for Orlagh’s taxi out front smoking and pulling at my wedgie in front of hippy earth mother.

We picked up Nicola Underwood-Arpac, another friend on holiday also married to a Turkish guy and with a young kid. We giggled in the taxi and admired each others rig-outs like a bunch of 18 year olds (although they probably wouldn’t say rig-outs). I had the urge to call the girls flaw and tell them their eyebrows were on point but I restrained gobshite Aisling.

We went to Sarays, an old favourite and met Jenna who is pregnant on her first baby. Myself and Nicola held back for a full 5 minutes before telling her shocking labour stories. Then we’d say “ah no, we’ll stop now” and remember more gore; the poor girl could barely eat her dinner.

20150820_192303Orlagh had an evening of sophisticated hang-outs planned but we wanted to go old school, cheesy bars followed by bar street. At one point myself and Nicola went to a jewelry shop (Opal) and I ordered an expensive white gold necklace after too many vodkas, it’s a disc and everyone tried to convince me to get my kids names on it. “Their names are engraved all over my body” I slurred “I don’t need reminding”. Jenna had gone at this stage (probably to cry) and Aoife another rep… she of the magnificent hair had taken her place. We did a few more bars and then bar street. It was so amazing to go back to Jimmys, the place where the three of us had met our husbands back in 2003. There was still a lot of old staff and our yenge* power was back!

Three young girls dance in arabian costumeNicola bowed out at this point and Orlagh dragged me the the Lemon Bar where we did a bit of clicky-fingered belly dancing.

I was dropped to the hotel in a taxi that I was convinced was a friend dropping us and Orlagh had to explain a few times that he would have to be paid. I lurched into reception in an exaggerated I’m completely sober fashion and took the lift (no it’s not the lift story.. part 5).

Ossie was awake and I told him animatedly about my night pausing only to invent a new price for my necklace. It was 4 am at that stage and the kids would wake at 7am but it was all worth it.

 

*A Turkish word of respect to a woman who is with a man.. a long story but being called yenge is a good thing; sometimes comes with free stuff, good seats and the respect that I am damn well entitled to! It’s kinda like being a Kardashian but without the money, bum and looks.

Motherhood, Musings

Ben 10 tried to wreck our holiday; our family trip to turkey part 3

August 19, 2015

We pulled up to the Seapearl Hotel and fell out of the van like the Clampetts. Orlagh was waiting and as Ossie said goodbye to his big brother Mehmet she saw me put my sunglasses on (lady code for crying) and she put her own on sympathetically.. she’s nice like that; I like to surround myself with emotional basketcases, makes me feel semi- normal.the-beverly-hillbillies-truck

We were portered (is that a word?) to our room which was amazing as it was a family room; 3 single beds in one and a double in the other for all the hot stuff me and the husband may get up to.

I fell onto the phone and ordered a bottle of wine.. Sultaniye, the absolute best and Ossie braced himself for the car crash that was inevitable. The wine arrived and I poured some for me and Orlagh and I sipped (glugged) as I unpacked. We made our way down to the poolside for the evening entertainment and I ordered vodkas while chain smoking. Ossie wisely took the smallies to bed and Conall threw himself into the kids competition with gusto. I got the hiccups and could not do anything to get rid of them bar take my un-detoxed self off to bed.giphy (4)

The kids loved the pool, Koray’s swimming lessons paid off and he swam like a little fish, while Conall looked on shocked. He tantrumed and blamed me for cancelling his lessons but if any of you remember I had to as he would become hysterical if he left the safety of the steps. It was a kick up the arse for him to see his little brother so proficient and he pushed his limits even putting his face in the water and I couldn’t have been prouder. I kept telling him that fear is the only thing that could stop him swimming (A fine parenting moment I congratulated myself) so he’d focus on that. I felt a bit frumpy with my togs but had nothing to worry about when I saw the size of some of the ladies squashed in tiny bikinis; I envied their swagger.

There was motherhood in all its examples poolside and I became a  bit of a voyeur. There was the breastfeeding hippy, that always seemed 100% focused on her kids… I admired her and was desperate for her approval although she copped me on my one night out dressed up sans kids, having a fag waiting on my taxi at the front of the hotel and I almost kneeled down in front of her to beg for forgiveness. She trounced off with her baby swathed to her chest in organic, breathable cotton. There was also a huge group of sun-bed hoggers from Dublin close by. There were many, many kids, some in nappies and the mammy was able to sunbathe uninterrupted all day. She had a gorgeous figure which was adorned with belly rings and fancy fringed bikinis. There was always a matching kimono/kaftan; her hair would be in an immaculate hun-bun, eyelashes attached and tan even. I could see the Dad always legging it around after the kids but I admired her Idon’tgiveafuck attitude. I don’t think my sizeable arse sat on the sun lounger for more than 5 minutes at a time and that was with Ossie’s help. “Mam I want an ice-cream, mam watch this, mam get in, mam I need a poo, mam…fuck off (Rian).”

I must have bought them every conceivable inflatable device for 2 minutes peace, along with all varieties of ice/pops and fizzy drinks… I made the mistake of ordering Conall a cocktail one night called a Ben 10… green juice with a sparkler and the 3 of them had me hounded all holiday for Ben bloody 10s.

MCDONALDS_KUSADASIOne day I was sick of sitting around the hotel and suggested bringing them into town; Ossie looked at me as if I’d suggested bringing them to a country club for a round of golf. We had the double buggy and decided to head for dinner… they all shouted McDonalds (including Ossie) and my vision of a nice family meal dissipated. We sat in the air conditioning of Mcdonald’s in a row looking out the window. I could see a restaurant (Planet Yucca) across the street and watched sadly as couples on their holiday in their going out clothes (mostly white) perused the menu leisurely outside. I tried to block out the sounds of my kids screeching over a sibling pinch, being looked at the wrong way or spilling their juice everywhere. I snapped back and cleaned them up, hurled some abuse at my startled husband and we made our way up one of the shopping streets. giphy (5)Conall spotted a Grand Theft Auto t-shirt. He has never played this game but decided he needed it so he lay on the ground screaming like Veruca Salt as we looked helplessly at each other. People were stepping over him and looking at us as if we were the shitest parents ever. We tried reasoning, some force but by jesus he wanted the t-shirt. The sweat was pumping off us and things got a little ugly … To my shame I said to my much-put-upon husband through gritted teeth “just buy him the fucking t-shirt” which he did and when Conall emerged smiling from the shop it took every ounce of my maternal strength not to punch his smug little face. We then went to get their haircuts in an old friend’s barber shop. The three of them went mental and tried to trash the place (I blame Ben 10)… Ahmet (the owner) looked at me as in “Are you ok?” and I just said quietly “what happened to my life?” He laughed as people with grown up kids tend to. 

I haven’t even gotten to my amazing night out or the incident in the lift with the cocktail…. it’s coming

To be continued…

Family, Motherhood

The Shoe Situation; Our Family Trip to Turkey Part 2

August 18, 2015

We were picked up in the airport by my husband’s oldest brother Mehmet in a mini-van and brought to his holiday home. The kids were delighted at the lax seatbelt laws and ran about the van alternating between screeching and whingeing for the hour and a half it took to get there. My wonderful husband had sat up front chatting with his brother and was unaware of the crisis in the back.

When we arrived, Ossie was reunited with his sister whom he hadn’t seen in 15 years and it was like a scene from Long Lost Families. His other brother Yakup and his Mam were there too, along with his sister’s two boys aged 13 and 10.

20150807_145627Nanny Ozdemir was thrilled to see the boys and babbled away to them while playfully slapping their bums (now I know where Ossie gets that particular trait). My boys are used to having an authoritarian granny (see Mom Corleone) but it proved helpful that this one doesn’t speak any english. The amount of times that Rian told her to fuck off was shocking but myself and Ossie just smiled indulgently as if he’d said I love you nanny. Koray was easy to bribe; I’d say go and kiss your nanny and I’ll give you money for the shop… and Conall much the same (note to self: undo the message that it’s ok to take payment in exchange for kisses).

20150806_203937It was difficult getting them to adapt to the shoe situation… never EVER in the house but they needed to be placed outside the door and slipped on immediately upon leaving the house.. the theory being no dirt would touch your feet and contaminate the inside floors. I was a nervous wreck shouting SHOES constantly. It didn’t help that Mehmet appeared to have OCD and was forever hosing stuff (including my manky kids) . My boys loved the freedom of no shoes and would leg it to the dusty playground across the road and appear to roll in dirt and come back to the house like they’d been up a chimney. Nanny Ozdemir was shocked at first as the other 2 boys were super-obedient and would sit quietly on their tablets, speaking only when spoken to. She soon became accustomed to the wildness of my progeny and would often burst out laughing at their shenanigans.

11825695_10153256096503138_1518317933831901748_nIt was a great place for kids, a pool, a playground and fruit and veg growing all around us. Koray loved to take seeds from the Sunflowers and shell and eat them. Our outdoor eating area was shaded by meandering grape vines (ironically). The back garden yielded tomatoes, figs, peaches, apples and some that I didn’t recognise.

I once helped the mammy prepare some okra for dinner without having a clue what it was, but t’was yummy. Breakfast consisted of a buffet of tomatoes, cheese, olives, peppers, boiled eggs and bread. Rian with his egg obsession (blame Kinder) would insist on “hatching” all the eggs.

I liked all the meals, mainly vegetarian and tomato based but the men did a BBQ one night for the Irish person and even made me chips to my shame (secret delight).

I did my best to help Fatma (sister) to prepare the food as she seemed a bit of a dogsbody (when I asked Ossie to ask if she was ok legging it around after everyone she answered “but what else would I be doing?”) but she would chop like Gordon Ramsay and look sympathetically at me as I autopsied a tomato, slowly. The only downside to our week with family was that the weather was in the mid to late 30s and the sleeping arrangements weren’t ideal. I was in a room with 2 single beds pushed together with Conall and Rian… I would invariably end up sideways with the gap sawing at my spine. There was no air conditioning and I felt like there were a thousand hair dryers styling me to suffocation.

I stuck out enough among my olive skinned, black-haired in-laws but it was impossible to wear make up so I paraded my boiled-shite look as brazenly as I could. There was no question of alcohol but the boys would sneak to the beach every night for some beers so I bought cigarettes (an occasional habit, mainly with drink) and smoked in secret to hold on to a bit of boldness.

11754543_10153255008728138_8712106861760590134_oWe had a few outings, one particularly disastrous one which on paper seemed fun. The local bus is a tractor pulling a cart (more tourist attraction than backwardness) and was to bring us into the town. We piled on, 5 kiddies, me, Yakup, Fatma and Mammy Ozdemir (Ossie was at the dentist…. a reoccurring theme on this holiday). My already battered spine was forced to sit on a wooden bench with Rian on my knee for 40 minutes while the sun bet the shit out of me. When we got off, it was clear to me that no one knew where we were or where to go. There was an arcade and we let the kids run amok in there. When we had to leave all kids (mine) started screaming and had to be physically removed and put back on the tractor…I think Yakup rethought fatherhood in his future that day.

I had really low expectations for a week with the in laws but it proved to be bonding, low maintainence and nutritional. Plus I always fall a little bit more in love with my husband when I see him in his natural environment and how lovely he is to his mammy (take note, my little shits).

I was ready for some air conditioning, gossip and most of all wine….Mehmet packed us up in his van of death again and off we sped weaving in and out of insane and illogical traffic, seatbeltless….. A glorious week in a fabulous hotel beckoned….surely there could be no dramas there?

To be continued…..

 

Life Unexpected

Mixed Beginnings; Our family trip to Turkey part 1

August 17, 2015

Sitting on my couch with a coffee about to watch an episode of It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia a wave of smugness washed over me…. I was 80% packed and had a full 35 hours till we’d be picked up for the airport. A viber message pinged and it was from Orlagh… my repping colleague from another life in Kusadasi and still one of my closest friends.

287937_1955180122682_7549346_oOrlagh:  “Did u get ur visas online?

Me: “Sure did” (delighted with myself as I’m notorious (can’t think why) for being scatty especially around super-organised Orlagh)

Orlagh “Great.. (followed by lots of patronising clappy hand emoticons)

Orlagh: “What flight are u on actually?”

Me: “The Sunday morning flight”

Orlagh: “Afternoon”?

Me: “O yeah arrives afternoon sorry

Orlagh: “No, it arrives 20.45

I felt a sense of dread and went to grab the tickets and a calendar. I looked from one to the other about 20 times before the realisation sank in …. we’re going tonight not tomorrow night fuckkkkkkkkkkkk!

giphy (3)I started ringing Ossie who was at work and didn’t answer for the first 40 times. When he did I was incoherent and babbling. He legged it home and raced to Dunnes 10 mins before it was to close as he had bought literally nothing, planning to use the following day to buy all his stuff. Meanwhile I was running around to neighbours to give keys and instructions with my phone clamped to my ear as they rolled their eyes and laughed at my eejitry.

I got the kids to bed and lay on my own wide awake till my alarm sounded at 3am and up I hopped with the monumental task of getting the 5 of us to Turkey in tact by the afternoon. I’m sure you can imagine or have experienced the scenes of carnage that ensued… a lost croc, a last minute poo (the husband), and a general air of open hostility.

4159592298_bb19936c53_bIn the taxi Conall began to ask a lot of questions about plane crashes and started muttering that he didn’t want to go. I plastered a fake smile on my face and told him that there hadn’t been a crash since 1900 when they first started making planes. I desperately hoped he hadn’t been googling or youtubing air disasters. His fear was forgotten amid duty free treats (I went with the Lancome Hypnose if you’re interested) and snacks but as we began to board he started to lash out a bit. We were boarded first and were near the back of the plane. I had to push him as his heels scraped the floor. He began to scream “LET ME OFF!!!! IT’S GOING TO CRASH!!” His eyes were unfocused, he was sweating and sheet white (Susan’s sheets, not mine, then he’d be grey or blue). I managed to wrestle him into his seat and Ossie got the other two into the seats opposite. I was worried at this stage that I’d have to leave the plane. He begged me to let him go and started screaming “SOMEONE PLEASE HELP”. He kept doing that thing toddlers do, making his back rod straight so I couldn’t grab him to hug his worries away. I was aware but unconcerned of the murmurings of other passengers. ba-baracas-costume-4At this point a flight attendant stepped in, Darryl Sheridan (Aer Lingus) and he was fantabulous. He brought us to the back of the plane and spoke calmly and reassuringly to Conall. I explained his autism and he simply nodded as if he had realised this already. In a last ditch attempt my son asked would Darryl knock him out (Mr. T style) but Darryl shook his head and said unfortunately no but he could get him maltesers. Whatever white magic he practised, we were back in our seats within 5 minutes and I got Conall’s headphones on and goat simulator (you don’t want to know) on the tablet. Darryl checked back regularly, especially when we ran into a bit of turbulence and he gave my arm the occasional sympathetic squeeze too… I loved him and have sent an email to Aer Lingus detailing my love and admiration and expect a restraining order in the post.

We arrived in Izmir to blazing temperatures and a tantruming 7 year old (getting revenge for the flight). All I wanted was a drink and a cigarette but we were off for a week to Amish territory in Seferihisar and some time with the Ozdemir brood.

Three crazy boys, a frazzled blonde mother and a Dad with a very limited wardrobe; without alcohol, language skills and rashers…….. to be continued.İzmir-Seferihisar

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