Skip to main content

Posts

Showing posts from August, 2016

Donna...

After a humdrum sort of Tuesday (that day after the Bank Holiday weekend when you really wish that you'd booked the Tuesday off too) it was lovely to hear from my best friend Mrs S. 

'Come to the pub', she said. 
'Your husband's had a rotten day', she said.
'It's a lovely evening', she said
'He's on his way to collect you', she said.
...and then the final dagger to the heart....'You're driving him home'.

Well, I couldn't say no could I?  Not that I would have anyway, as any time spent with Mrs S is wonderful, but I was slightly concerned about the chicken and potatoes which I had prepared for a sneaky Tuesday roast.  Now I know how these kind of impromptu evenings can go, so I decided that I wouldn't throw the chicken in the oven, and assume we would be back in an hour.  Sensible decision as it happened.

Two hours later, we were still sitting outside the pub.  The husband was on this third pint (he'll regret tha…

Memories are made of this...

So yesterday was the day.  The day when I went into daughter number two's bedroom to sort out what stayed and what went now she has officially moved out.  You may remember that I said she was just a child of ten when we moved in, so colouring books sat side by side with false eyelashes, and cuddly toys clashed with six inch platform shoes.

It was like watching a whole life walk slowly past me, saying 'Remember this, mum?' I had promised myself I wouldn't cry, because memories are lovely and need to be nurtured, and there was only one thing which caused the tears to break free - more of that later.  But let's get back to the treasures I found yesterday.

£2.74  - always a bonus when clearing your children's rooms.  No folding stuff unfortunately, but there was some Euro shrapnel and some rather odd Hungarian coins

Three pairs of my tweezers - none of which was in any working order, however much bending I did (where's Uri Geller when you need him?)

Four pairs …

Take the money and run...

Well yesterday proved to be quite an unexpected joy.  The husband, who has come to the conclusion that as we are now of a certain age, there are events which we are duty bound to attend, suggested a local craft fair.  My first thought was 'Do I really need another wooden bowl?' but sympathy for his little face won the day, and we headed down to Henley in the morning. 

As my purse had been emptied yet again without me realising it (Chinese takeaway more than likely), we stopped at the cashpoint to give my bank account another hammering.  It was raining naturally, and the husband and I had no umbrella, jackets or waterproof shoes on, preferring to throw caution to the wind in August.

Fast forward four and half hours, and you find the two us waddling back across the grass to the car, laden with carrier bags whilst trying to drink a yoghurt milkshake through a paper straw without spilling it.  I had lost any circulation in my right arm by the time we got back to the car, and the …

Bye bye love...

Daughter number two officially left the building yesterday morning.  She is the first of our brood to go properly.  By this, I mean that it's unlikely that she will sleep in her bed here for more than one night at a time.

This is quite a scary thought.  When I look at her, all I can see is my little girl.  How on earth can it be that she is living in her own house and holding down a great job?  It only seems like yesterday that I was watching her in school productions and plaiting her hair, and all of a sudden, it's changed.

It won't be easy having her live so far away.  I am so used to her borrowing my clothes on a regular basis, and I can't imagine that she'll do the 105 mile round trip to nick my jumpers/shoes/dresses etc.  Having said that, maybe it would have been a good idea to check her suitcases before she left.  Perhaps she has pre-empted what she'll be needing over the next three months and 'borrowed' accordingly.

This works both ways of cours…

Shop around...

So the Big Day Off dawned bright and sunny.  The headache which has been hammering away at me for a week had subsided to a dull roar, so it was a great start to the day for me.

I didn't want to waste my day, and by 9.30am I had done the week's shopping, had a coffee in a local café and sold a wheelie bin to the man on the fruit and veg market stall (don't ask).

Miss R, who also had a day off was tipping up round about 10.30 to spend the day with me, and had offered to bring lunch.  I got a bit carried away in Waitrose, and returning home with the many bags of shopping it became apparent that it wasn't all going to fit in the fridge.  I tried, and it was a bit like playing Food Jenga...move the cheese too quickly and all the yoghurts end up on the floor taking salad and a carton of beetroot with them.

But not to worry.  Son number two was at the fridge so quickly (obviously waiting at a safe distance while I unpacked the whole lot) that I wondered for a moment if I had …

Back together...

I have come to the conclusion that making any attempt at cleaning my house is pointless, as soon as I have more than one child in it. 

It's been just son number two for the last week.  Admittedly, where he is, so is his BFF (she's no trouble and on occasion is more welcome in this house than son number two) but even so, I have managed to keep on top of all the cleaning and ironing.  The house is relatively tidy, and once I brought down the fourteen glasses, six plates and a half empty can of coke from his bedroom, I was feeling that everything was where it should be.

Son number one is now back in residence.  When he is home there are several things that I can count on...

Firstly, he always leaves the bathroom cabinet door open. I always find this slightly odd as he has to open it to get his toothbrush out.  Perhaps he has a door phobia - maybe I'll remove the door and then he can have an open-plan cabinet.  Might work...

The other thing I can rely on is that there will be…

Monster mash...

Son number one has returned from somewhere in Asia, sporting a rather unusual pair of shorts which wouldn't look out of place in Bangkok, but here?  Well he just looks like someone who has escaped from some type of institution, and not in a good way either. 

The conversation invariably turned to his dirty clothes.  He had been really well organised, and had taken a carrier bag so that he could separate the dirty clothes from the clean when he came back. Now there was only one bag of clothing, so either he wore every single item, or he took all the dirty stuff to a laundrette out there, anticipating the fact that I have a day off on Friday and won't want to be messing about with washing.  I'll give you one guess as to which way this went.  Needless to say, I will be adding a third load of washing to my list of 'Things to Do' on my day off.

Son number two hit IKEA today.  He and the BFF had gone down with the intent of buying everything he would need in his new stud…

Lazy day...

I have asked for a day off work on Friday.  The thing that makes this slightly more special is that it doesn't form part of a holiday away with the husband.  It's not a day dedicated to taking children to look at houses or universities, nor will it be spent at the vets with one or other of out four legged fuzzballs.

This Friday is a day off for me, and me alone.  I have planned this day in my head, and here is how I hope it will pan out.

6.30am The husband will bring me a cup of tea in bed, having walked and fed the dogs
8.00am  I will get up and make myself a leisurely breakfast, which I will eat in the sunshine
9.00am Get changed into shorts (Going to be a scorcher on Friday)
10.00am Sunbathe in the garden
1.00pm Time for a lovely homemade salad, eaten in the sunshine with a freshly made fruit juice
3.00pm More sunbathing
5.00pm A lovely walk with the dogs in the woods
7.00pm  Husband returns, and surprises me with table booked at swanky pub for dinner.

In reality, I think w…

Kick in the teeth...

Yesterday was spent in one of my absolutely favourite positions.  On my back, with my mouth wide open, while a relative stranger shoved weapons of torture and suction pipes in, hoping to remedy a small tooth problem.  Yes, I was at the dentist.  Deep joy...

Over the years, I have had numerous times where I could gladly have thumped my dentist.  Someone once told me that carrying a small revolver was insurance against them hurting me.  I haven't tried this as yet, but the last time I was in, my dentist said 'This little prick won't hurt'.  'Yes you will', I replied.  'You always do'. 

Here's the thing though.  It only takes one bad experience to cement the opinion that all dentists are sadomasochists, who probably take all their drills home at night to practise on whoever chances to pass by.  I just picture Steve Martin in full Little Shop of Horrors mode, rocking the nitrous-oxide.  No wonder I am a 'Nervous Patient' (this is what it says o…

Go your own way...

Summer took a well-earned day off yesterday.  Well, let's face it, four days of sunshine can be a tiring thing to sustain can't it?

To celebrate the return of the torrential rain and single digit temperatures, the husband and I met up with the mother for a roast dinner.  Not at her house, of course.  This is something that simply doesn't happen anymore.  For some reason, around August 2007 the mother decided that cooking roast dinners for her ever increasing family just wasn't her thing anymore. 

There have been various excuses over the years.  The first one was that her kitchen wasn't big enough to house us all.  We offered to do separate sittings, dining at 12.00, 1.00 and 2.00, but that suggestion wasn't received well. I think that three sittings of cauliflower cheese coupled with her OCD would just about have tipped her over the edge. Then she moved house, and we all thought, 'This is it....'.  Well no, it wasn't. 

Apparently, the table which …

Suddenly I see...

The husband has new glasses.  Now this is nothing unusual in itself, as he has been peering through reading glasses for some time now.  But these are different, in that they cover every base.  Near and far, he can see it all.  The trouble is, they are so big that I can't see much of him anymore.  I suppose it's something I will have to get used to, in the same way that he has to get used to me not having a waistline anymore or the fact that my boobs point more towards the south west rather than north east.

Getting older is no fun at all.  I remember laughing with a much older friend some years ago about how if it didn't head south, wear out, shrink or drop off, it would simply stop working.  I suppose that is where we are now, the husband and me.

But good things happen too of course.  With a shrinking bosom comes the thrill of not having to wear a bra all the bloody time.  Who invented these instruments of torture?  A bloke I'm sure, as there is nothing similar in a ma…

New kid in town...

So son number two has done what he needed to do to further his education in the bright lights of Essex. I am expecting him to start fake tanning and teeth whitening over the next few weeks, so that he blends in with all the other Essex boys, and after two weeks' of fresher fun, he'll probably do a passable impression of either Chas or Dave, but without the beard, would have stopped wearing socks with his suit, and started calling me 'Geezer'.

He'll be leaving home on the 1st October, hightailing it to Colchester, swapping his comfortable life here for a tiny bedroom with a bathroom where you can s**t, shave and shower without turning round, and a kitchen which will harbour many bacteria after a few weeks, some of which are yet to be identified by a chap in a white coat.  Of course, he will forget the important things, like our home telephone number (unless he needs money), and learn lots of new stuff, most of which he will never have to use again in his adult life …

Fame...

Life has gone back to normal after the excitement of Wednesday's filming (I can now stop sucking my stomach in, the husband can go back to wearing his daft t-shirts and the children will go back to their normal 'turning up when we can't afford to pay for our own food' visits).

It was a very interesting experience, and I'll probably look at every television programme with a little more respect now.  I was not the 'natural' I hoped I would be, I must confess.  This all became very apparent within five minutes of the camera being switched on.  All I had to do was open a kitchen cupboard door, remove my Red Clover tablets and a glass, pop a tablet and swallow with the glass of water.  This is what everyone at home will probably see. 

What you won't see is the cameraman saying to me..

'Don't swallow the tablet' (too late)

'Please don't swallow that one too' (he wasn't quick enough to stop me).

'Wrong hand'

'Don'…

Flash, bang wallop...

So the big day arrived.  Have run around the house with a hoover, duster, two pairs of jeans, three shirts, two pairs of shoes and a tube of cold sore cream, I finally decided on the right outfit to wear.  To be honest, I was in such a flap, that I am surprised that the end result wasn't two dusters fashioned into a bikini with a hoover bag on my head (mind you, this would have hidden the cold sore which now has its own postcode and has just received a Council Tax bill).

It also just happened to be the hottest day in bloody history, and the most important decision I had to make was whether to go with bare arms or sleeves.  Actually, this was after choosing the best biscuits, buying the right fruit juice and selecting which of my tacky ornaments were to stay on show. (Apologies to my solar powered waving duck - you just didn't cut it yesterday).

So going back to the sleeves, you ladies of a certain age will recognise this dilemma very well - sleeves were obviously invented by s…

Dizzy...

It was a bit of a maelstrom of a day at my house yesterday.  I had gone into a dizzy spin about the state of the house, my wardrobe, the cold sore on my lip, whether the dogs would behave, whether the husband would do as he was told and what the weather would be like on filming day. 

As the day wore in, I gave myself a good talking to.  After all, what could possibly go wrong?  After some thought on this, here's my list of probables...

1. It will be so hot that I will spend the whole afternoon resembling a female wrestler with a Pifco handheld fan, knocking back the Red Clover like a mad woman.

2. The cold sore on my lip will have an eruption which Etna would struggle to better.  It's a shame I didn't have a little more warning on this, as I could have grown and trained an upper lip moustache to cover it.

3.  The husband will refuse to wear what I have laid out, and will sulk when I make him change out of the t-shirt which claims his parts are still in good working order …

Twinkle, twinkle little star...

So the filming is to be done on Wednesday afternoon.  The husband, who is to join us for a chat when he gets back from work, is under strict instructions to shower and change before he gets in front of the camera.  As a building site project manager, his t-shirt colour choice is always of the hi-vis type, and at times, my washing line can resemble a pack of highlighter pens. 

I have dressed the husband for many years, and even now, he is not allowed to shop for clothes on his own.  He has a penchant for the slightly gaudy t-shirt, usually embellished with some shiny stuff and italic writing, and has come home with some real fashion disasters over the years.  These are usually made to do an immediate U-turn and head straight back to the store, without even getting out of the bag. 

So you can see, when the lovely television lady was talking me through what I should wear on Wednesday - no stripes, large flowers or blatant advertising (bang goes the sweatshirt I have ordered with 'F…

Lazin' on a sunny afternoon...

I like this hot weather we're having at the moment.

But it does bring out the worst in us Brits.  As soon as there is any chance that the mercury might rise out of the blue section, we remove all unnecessary clothing, stretch out on the nearest sun lounger and inflict our goose-pimpled blue mottled skin to an unsuspecting world.  Of course, as our bodies have not seen sun for probably a year or so, we like to be careful, slathering on the factor 50 just in case we burn, and setting phone alarms so that we can turn over every half an hour (or is that just me that does that?)  The end result of this is that we have no suntan, just red angry skin where we missed the factor 50, and a peeling nose.  Where's the tube of St Tropez when you need it?

So yesterday, despite me wanting to soak up some sunshine, the husband and I trekked up to Milton Keynes again, to take two large items of furniture up to daughter number two's new home.  Try as we might, we hadn't been able to squ…

It's all about that bass...

Friday was Miss R's birthday.  I don't want to divulge her age, as that information should always remain between a lady and her birth certificate, but I think it's ok to say that whatever age she was, she certainly doesn't look it.

I had arranged a surprise party for her at a local hostelry, ably abetted by my nephew, Master J.  I say surprise, but I'll be honest with you, she twigged that we were up to something around Tuesday this week.  We tried to keep the pretence up, and she even played along with us, but she knew we would all be celebrating her birthday with her, and we all knew that she knew. 

I had chosen a local restaurant, with enough space for thirteen egos and a balloon bouquet, so I was optimistic about the evening.  I'm not going to give the name of where we went, but we sure as hell will not be stepping over their threshold again, with or without a balloon bouquet.  The food was appalling.  How hard can it be to serve a decent prawn cocktail?  …

Dancing on the ceiling...

Carrying on from yesterday, thoughts now turn to the house.  This would be the house which will be seen on national television some time in the future. 

First thing to go will be the lounge carpet.  Now this is relatively new, but Reg (the puppy on borrowed time) has pee'd so many times on the carpet that it now resembles a 1970's tie-dye shirt.  If only schnauzers were bigger, I could have trained him and Percy to stretch over the carpet and conceal the worst bits, lying on the grey shag pile like a couple of page three models.

Next thing that needs attention will be the front lawn.  First impressions are ever so important, and I'd rather the public's one of me was not as a lazy cow who couldn't be bothered to get the lawn mower out once in a while.  If it isn't done soon, the nice television lady won't be able to even find the front door, such are the dizzy heights the weeds are achieving.  Of course, I am barred from the lawnmower as it is the husband&#…

U got the look...

It would appear that I am to have my fifteen minutes of fame.  You may remember me talking about the lovely lady who interviewed me about how I feel about the menopause (seven hotties yesterday- not a good day to ask.  I realised that I had missed three days of the Red Clover, and am putting it down to that rather than my aging body throwing itself off a cliff). 

Going back to the lovely lady, she has decided that I am to go onto the television and talk to the unsuspecting public about what is happening to me in the withering woman department. 

Now, this has raised many issues.  My hair, face and body are not even kitchen-ready, never mind TV-ready, and I have a list of things to do before she turns up with the cameras...

1. Book in a boob job.  Bit extreme?  Well you name me one famous female with a 36B bra size.  No?  I rest my case... 

2. Speak to lovely Mrs H at Classic Beauty for back to back CACI facelifts to raise my jowls to at least knee level.

3. Shave everything

4. Get r…

Broken...

Well after yesterday's moaning blog about son number two not bringing me a present back from his holiday (other than his dirty washing) I must confess to feeling rather ashamed.  Having done all his washing and ironing in record time, he presented me with the gift of a spa day at a local posh hotel.  This was 'just because' apparently, and I felt really awful...

There have been other occasions where I have misjudged either him or a situation over the years, and I still look back and feel slightly mortified.

I remember being called into school when he was about nine years old, as he had walked into a door, splitting his forehead open quite beautifully.  In the car on the way to the hospital, he said to me, 'They're not going to put stitches in are they? Promise me they won't mum'.

As I watched the blood run down his left cheek, I said, 'No of course not sweetie.  I expect they'll put a little plaster over it, that's all'.

You see, the last th…

Give a little bit...

Son number two returned home yesterday after a week in the sun with Lucy-Loo, his BFF.  As he walked through the front door, I had to do a double take, as the young man walking through my door was only slightly darker than me after four hours on a Portsmouth beach. 

'Was the weather rubbish?' I asked, looking at the lack of demarcation lines between knee and toe.

'No, it was really hot', he replied.  'At least 30 degrees every day'.  (Can you hear my teeth gnashing from there?)

'Why are you so pale then?  Were you recovering from heavy nights every day?'

Well it was a different story altogether.   It turned out the two of them had been sightseeing.  Visiting museums and large cities whilst in Spain, rather than follow the trend of the other three siblings (basically drinking till the early hours, sleeping all day, drinking till the early hours, sleeping all day etc etc). 

He wanted to update daughter number two and me on all the adventures before gett…

Beauty and the beast...

Something happened on Saturday which made me realise that my body is falling apart far more quickly than I originally thought.  Prior to leaving for the beach on Saturday, I had very hurriedly shaved my legs - these have not really been seen in public for some time, so you imagine that the bic razor had its work cut out. 

Stretching out on the beach pebbles later that day, you can only begin to imagine my horror at seeing the five o'clock shadow which stretched from my ankles to my knees.  I just couldn't fathom it out at all, as even with a quick going over, a new razor always does the job.  Then the penny dropped.  I hadn't realised that the protective cover was still on, so it was the equivalent of shaving my legs with a banana. Once I got over the shame, it actually wasn't too bad having legs like Chewbacca for the afternoon as the wind picked up around 4.00 and it meant I didn't have to put my trousers again.  That will teach me to leave the varifocals off wh…

Ball of confusion...

Yesterday afternoon was spent at Wembley, watching the husband get all twinkly eyed watching his favourite team play for the Charity Shield. I'm not the biggest football fan, and always tend to support the underdog.  In this case it was Leicester.  As we were sitting amongst 42, 201 Manchester fans, I promised the husband that I would sit very quietly, and not make too much of a fuss if Leicester scored a goal.

I had even bought a pink top, so that I would blend in with the Manchester fans.  They were rather lively to say the least.  What is it about football matches that makes men need to remove their t-shirts and swing them in the air, this movement causing their vast stomachs to swing in the opposite direction.  It wasn't pretty, and there was I, worrying that my shorts weren't long enough.  I reached the decision that donning a football shirt does not make you a sportsman.  Unless that sport is darts perhaps.

Not only were the men in some state of inappropriate undress…

Ring, ring...

Yesterday, the husband and I schlepped down to Portsmouth, home of the mother, Mrs Jangles, Nanny Joyce, and all those who came before them.  We had decided that a trip down Memory Lane was in order for the mother and Mrs Jangles, so roping in Miss R, Susie B and Messrs OH and G, we all convened in the pub which used to be run by my Granddad's parents.  The husband and I were given the room my great grandmother used to sleep in - looking at the bed, I doubt much has changed since then.

The weather was beautiful, so a day on the beach was decided on.  I say 'beach', but it looked more like my drive with its silly stones.  We had realised fairly early on in the drive to the beach that we would need to buy chairs, as Southsea doesn't have some bloke walking up and down the prom selling you the use of a deckchair for two hours for £40.  There was just one shop at Southsea, and close investigation revealed a beautiful striped folding chair on one of its shelves.  'Can w…

Throwing it all away...

Daughter number two's LSB (long suffering boyfriend) turned up yesterday with his little brother in tow.  It's difficult to give him a name as such, as he looks like the result of the LSB on a boil wash then a rather fierce tumble dry.  He's the same, just a lot smaller.  The LSB insisted that Mister Will was only 12, but I'll be honest with you, his level of chat far outweighed anything experienced with the husband, so either he is a lot older than he looks, or he has had one hell of an education.

Coming here yesterday, I managed to extend his education somewhat further.

Daughter number two, having finally finished clearing out her bedroom, had managed to amass 17 bin bags full of clothes, shoes, makeup, and stuff - much of which had been designated as rubbish.  I'll be honest with you, I wasn't brave enough to take it down to the charity shop, doing the walk of shame down the high street leaving a trail of her old knickers and the odd dried up lipstick in my …

Exodus...

So the exodus has started...

Yesterday saw the beginning of the end of daughter number two's bedroom.  In a couple of weeks' time she will be heading off to her new home, and it will no longer be her room, and would have been loosely renamed as 'The Dogs' Room'.  Daughter number two has been in residence in this room for over 10 years, entering it as a child of 11.  As she is now almost 22, you can only start to imagine the breadth of memories (crap) she has hoarded over the years.  The mementos (crap) brought back from holidays, and vast amount of makeup (all crap) which she has managed to accrue.

She roped me in yesterday to help her bag up everything which was going to a new home (the charity shop or the tip) and the rest of it which was going to her new home (tidy for the moment, but will resemble a tip ten minutes after she walks in through the front door).  She's not very good at throwing anything away, preferring to keep hold of it 'just in case'…

A kick in the teeth...

Tuesday was one of  'those days'.  You know the ones...where everything you touch, rather than turning to gold, simply shrivels up and dies.  Yes, it was one of those days.

It started rather well.  I had my probationary interview with my employers at Binland.  I'm not saying that they were pleased with me, but I had to Vaseline my ears thoroughly to get through the office door when we were finished.  It's lovely knowing that you're doing a good job. Thinking about this, I don't know if I am any good at the other job I do - 'mothering'.  As I have yet to be told otherwise, I suppose it's easier to assume that I am bloody marvellous at that also.

So back to work where I was off to visit a food recycling plant.  Now this was a bit tricky.  I had come into work dressed for a day in the office.  Smart three quarter trousers, shirt, pumps and make up.  Fast forward two hours and you find me in the same clothes, except for the pumps which had been swapped …

Say hello, wave goodbye...

I like to pick my moments very carefully in this house, when making decisions about cleaning the children's rooms.  At the moment, three are abroad, and one is in Devon (which might as well be abroad, it takes so bloody long to get there).  Having hired a JCB, dump truck and also invested in some industrial strength bin bags, I set to it yesterday, happy in the knowledge that none of them was going to be physically able to stop me from clearing their rooms.

I had given them all fair warning...they knew that I would be 'going in' as it were, and if they hadn't decided what they wanted to keep, then I would...

Now my kids' rooms tell you a lot about each of them. 

Son number two's bedroom, which was the first to get the full Mumpty treatment yesterday is like a snapshot of his entire life.  He is a complete hoarder of 'stuff', and it's possible to find muscle building powder (I don't know why he bothers with this, he will forever have the physiqu…

Green, green grass of home...

You will expect me to be telling you that the husband didn't surface until late on Sunday after the mammoth night out on Saturday.  However, quite surprisingly, he headed downstairs at a reasonable time (when I say reasonable, I mean a morning time still in single digits) and wandered out to the garden with a strong coffee and a bacon sandwich.

Thinking he looked almost human (he was wearing sunglasses so the full red-eye effect wasn't apparent at that point) I asked him if he could mow the lawn when he was finished.  The buttercups and dandelions were now so long that the dogs had gone missing on a couple of occasions, and I could no longer reach my wooden bench without using a scythe.  He didn't say a word, but simply heaved himself out of his chair and headed off to the garage with a long sigh. 

I had planting to do, so started on the borders, ably assisted by Reg and Percy, whose main love in life is flowerpots (full or empty).  While I wasn't looking, they manage…

Yes sir, that's my baby...

I think I recovered from Saturday's 1920's night out around 5.00pm yesterday.  I know that you are all shaking your heads, and tut-tutting right now, but it actually had nothing to do with the one glass of pre-Prohibition fizz that I had.  If I fill you all in on how the night went, it might make more sense..

So the husband, accompanied by his three slappers (by 6.30 we had decided that this was a more accurate description of us than the flappers we were dressed as) headed up to London.  The husband was driving, pretending not to listen as we chatted about husbands, boyfriends past and present and personal hygiene (I am NOT going to elucidate on this, no matter how much money you all scrape together). 

We had all dressed up beautifully. Mrs S was in vibrant purple fringing, with feathers at the side of her head.  Miss R was in lilac, with feathers at the front of her head (these kept getting a touch of the brewer's droop as the night progressed, and she resembled one of D…