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Women Multi Task Because They Have To

Feb 4, 2008
My husband calls it prioritising. I call it being lazy. I have never seen him do more than one thing at a time. God knows how he gets by at work but at home he makes an issue out of having to lift his feet so I can vacuum beneath them, while joggling the baby on my hip to keep him quite and stirring the spag bol to make sure it doesn't burn all on top of helping little Daniel with his homework.

Monday morning I woke up at 5am to the dulcet tones of a fractious, screaming, teething baby interspersed with the other half's incessant snoring. Who needs sleep? All this and I still don't wake up grumpy - I let him sleep in.

After soothing the baby, feeding the toddler, putting on the washing and preparing him upstairs breakfast, he comes down in a panic about not having his shirt ironed. What is his problem? He has more than one shirt and he wants the one that's not ironed. He's flapping about so unnecessarily and insists he can't do his own shirt because he's busy looking for his keys! Can this man not see what I'm doing? Does he seriously want a divorce?

In the usual way of the world, he is finally packed off to work, the kids are scrubbed, fed and watered and the house is in a state that might even pass the mother in laws standards. I make it out of the door with 2 minutes to strap the offspring into the car before making my way through the traffic, stopping off at pre-school, then the babysitter and finally into the office where I work.

Disaster of disasters, the car refuses to start! Please god, not on a Monday morning. All the prayers in the world are not helping and I have to phone the office and let them know I'm going to be late. I've tried ringing the other half but I really should have known how much help he would be.

Unbundling the kids from the car, we go back into the house so I can phone the garage. At least my husband managed to get one thing right and it turns out when he took out our insurance policy, I am entitled to a courtesy hire car.

At ten fifty the hire car turns up and, having been through the same feeding and cleaning process with the rugrats, I go through the rigmarole of re-strapping them back into the car and we're off to begin our day two hours late.

Of course, the hire car is virtually running on fumes so a quick pit stop is called for. I pay for the fuel at the kiosk and make my way back to the hire car with a feeling of impending doom. What is that all over the window? Child number one got bored waiting and found a half eaten bar of chocolate down the side of the seat which he has proceeded to smear all over the window so he can draw faces in it!

This is going to cost me, I can just see it! With a little sense of relief, I drop them off at their various points and finally arrive at work hot and flustered, leaving the hire car in my normal spot.

I spend the rest of my day working at double speed to make up for the lateness. Getting back into my hire car at five o'clock, I look around to see where the sweet sickly smell is emanating from and remember the chocolate encrusted window that has been sitting in the heat all day.

I don't have time to deal with this now. I have to pick the kids up, get home and put dinner on, thus starting the evening ritual all over again before not sleeping again tonight. Starting the hire car, I realise that something is stopping me from moving off and I get out of the car already knowing what it is.

The car park attendants are so hot round here that I forgot to inform them that I had a hire car today and not my normal car. I've been clamped. That just about does it for the day. I call my husband, inform him in a voice that tells him I mean business that he WILL be picking up the children tonight, he WILL be cooking dinner tonight and he WILL be sleeping in the spare room tonight. After securing a sheepish 'yes dear', I hang up the phone and make my way to the pub.
About the Author
Expert working mother Catherine Harvey looks at the use of a hire car to get her out of a difficult position. To find out more please visit http://www.car-hire-uk.com/
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