As mum said: What a day.
It started out so well- a lie in, nice sunny weather, got to mums at 11:30 (1/2 hour earlier than 12 deadline)... and then things started to go wrong. We were intending to go to see the terracotta warriors, well, they'd been inviting us round for ages but we were always too busy. We expected to have to queue up for tickets to get in, hence we wanted to leave before 12.
1) by the time we got to the bus stop, I noticed mum's shoelace was undone. I knelt down -in a massive swab of gooey lung cookie and without thinking, went to wipe my knee with my finger, thus ensuing much panic and overuse of baby wipes. Yuck yuck yuck.
2) Victoria station underground was closed. We got on a bus
3) Bus got stuck in traffic for an hour near Piccadilly
4) The Terracotta warriors were booked up. Until JANUARY
5) We booked January but the lady got the date on the tickets wrong and so we had to wait again in the queue to get the right ones
6) Too jaded to look round the b-mus, we decided to get a bit of food. Although we were nearly the first people in the restaurant, EVERYONE was served before us and the brie in my "gourmet sandwich" was tasteless and salty. French cuisine, my foot.
7) The tube on the way back home caught fire. As soon as we got on at oxford circus I could smell burning rubber. I asked anyone if they were slightly perturbed by this. The couple opposite said: "if there is smoke, that is when you have to worry." Three tube workers were in my carriage, I asked them if they knew why there was a really bad smell of burning rubber. They just shrugged. By now mum was getting embarrassed by my harrying. Thankfully I was proved right when, at pimlico, the tube driver announced with characteristic understatement: "ladies and gentlemen, I have been informed there is an apparent defect on this train. Please get off here."
As we got off, there was billowing smoke from a few carriages up. "Apparent defect?!" I yipped, a little like a Westie, it has to be admitted. "The ruddy train is on FIRE."
The tube workers just laughed.
Mum and I decided to get the bus - but NOBODY else left the platform. Are people IDIOTS? There's a ruddy train on fire, there is no way it is suddenly going to open the doors and let people on again. All trains are going to be held up for hours to come, so WHY were they all (and I mean, at least 100 people) standing there gormlessly looking on? Are they complete and utter gooseberries? Did they drop out of the silly tree and hit every branch on the way down? Were they all at a convention for the protection of total plonkers? When they were born, did the doctor squeeze their heads a bit too tightly?
What if it had been a bomb? I cannot express my utter disbelief at this sorry batch of humanity. What morons. They deserve to have been blown up to prevent the gene pool being further diluted by these brainless imbeciles. Really, the case for involuntary sterlisation gets harder to argue against each day. When we exited the station, there was a worried-looking mother who came up to ask us whether there was a train on fire as she could smell the smoke from the foyer and was worried about her son, who she was meant to be meeting. I said: "Yeah, its on fire, but everyone else decided to stay down there and watch instead of coming up." It's like those horror films - people hear a creepy noise, the lights go out and they go to investigate to see where that unearthly shrieking and running water is coming from. Not me, matey. If I heard a scary noise I'd be out of that house like a shot, running hell for leather until I was in a crowded place, most likely a police station where there are lots of strong men and women with guns and things to protect me. "He who lives to run away, lives to run away another day." Curiosity will not kill this cat, no siree.
8) We finally get home and nip to Sainsbury's, where mum forgets to get cash back and then goes back for a second try. After which she is convinced that the dopey man serving her has memorised all her card details because she can't find her bill, so even though she actually has her card, she cancels it in case the man has stolen her identity. If he were really able to memorise all the numbers on a card in less than 20 seconds, he would not be a 30-year old Sainsbury's till assistant. Yet somehow it is MY fault for giving mum a nectar card and I have to listen to a whole saga about why he would not have given her a bill (my suggestion - that he just forgot - was considered "parochial" and "missing the point").
Seriously, you can't make this up. Mugabe himself could not imagine such torture for me. All because I cursed the person who swabbed on the ground. I bet that person has been having a wonderful day. I would damn him again, but I can't deal with any more bad karma. Seriously, Old Testament dudes cursed people all the time and they were blessed. Elisha was mocked by loads of asbos for being a baldy, so he curses them and a bear comes out and mauls 42 of them. I curse a pavement spitter and it's me that gets a shoddy day. Why couldn't a bear have come out of the sideroad and bitten that gobbing chump on the rear, just to assure me that there is retribution on this earth? Well, maybe not a bear, but perhaps a dog? Even a pigeon. Just anything.
9) At last I get home, with my Tiffin, hot chocolate drink and double-bill of Friends. I get a phone call from mum, where she informs me that she was chatted up by a local shopkeeper, but when she left the shop she realised her fly was open. It's not really retribution but it helped.
At the time of writing, it's 11:10. I don't think anything else can go wrong, but just in case I hear a creepy noise, I've got the police station right behind my flat. I take no chances.