By Sunday afternoon I'd had enough of the holidays and more than enough of my delightful children. As they were all quarreling vaguely, I kicked them outside to 'do' the animals. Doing the animals involves not just feeding and watering the numerous beasties but also grooming, brushing and general titivating. As all the animals, from the elderly spaniel to the cats and ducks, enjoy being brushed, this activity can take all afternoon. And, once the children are outside, they tend to stop squabbling and get on with it. In any case, I can't hear them which is the main point of the exercise.
So there I was curled up on the sofa, enjoying a rare moment of calm when the eldest burst through the door in a state of near hysteria, shouting, 'Mum, Mum, come quick, its Frizz'.
Now Daisy is nearly 15 and Frizz is the pony. Being nearly 15, Daisy is prone to bursts of hysteria and she is what I would term 'A Neurotic Horse Owner', forever worrying about her beloved pony. I'm more inclined towards the school of benign neglect myself, for both children and animals. And come to that housework.
But this seemed serious. Daisy was nearly in tears and white as a sheet. I rushed outside fearing the worst, only to find Frizz calmly munching on a hay-net and the small son hopping about nearby holding something in his hand.
'Mum, Frizz has got .....NITS', he announced with great pride whilst unclenching his fist and showing me Exhibit A - a large, fat nit. 'Its true Mum, Frizz has got nits' sobbed Daisy.
'Don't be ridiculous, it probably dropped out of your hair'.
At this, Daisy snorted 'Aw Muum' and gave me The Look. All mothers of teenage daughters will be familiar with The Look.
If not, imagine that you are a small insignificant pile of dog poo that has just said something really, really stupid to a higher life force. The higher life force cannot even be bothered to reply to such a menial pile of matter and just responds by shooting you a withering look.
The 'Aw Mum' bit translates as "I am like, totally way, too old and like, totally way too cool to like get nits. You loser."
Obviously close examination revealed that the pony did not have nits (funny that) and that the child did have nits. Ha!
As luck would have it, only the day before I'd unpacked a few more boxes and found some Spanish nit killing lotion. So as long as these are not racist French nits, who refuse to respond to Spanish chemicals, we should all be ok.
That evening the teenage nephew - Mr. C - returned home after being out all weekend. He dashed into the bathroom for a shower. Such behaviour is totally out of character so my Mama radar went into overdrive....Had he already heard of our infestation? Was he trying to wash away evidence? Girls? Drugs?
It turns out that he just hadn't had a shower since the previous.....Wednesday - which even he considered a bit much. I think next weekend I think I should add him to the list of animals to be brushed.