Friday, 29 April 2011

Marathons & Mistaken Identities...

We flew home before Easter in order to watch my little sister run the London Marathon on the 17th April. My dad was to meet us at the airport, and the children were super excited to see him. I spotted him first, waiting for us in a cafe. I pointed him out to the kids, and they ran over to meet him. At the last minute he took a shortcut to meet us, but my son kept on running. I wondered where on earth he was going at first, until I spotted the man at the counter... I suppose he did slightly resemble my dad, but by then S had grabbed hold of his hand anyway,and was shouting "Grandad, Grandad" excitedly. Doppelganger Grandad then turned around, and the look of horror on S's face as the realisation hit that this wasn't who he had actually expected it to be kicked in, and was both slightly amusing and heartbreaking at the same time. Real Grandad however, who had watched the whole thing unfold, found it hilarious (as did my daughter)! As we left the scene (trying to console a furious small boy), it was hard to explain that nobody was actually laughing at him, it was more the situation! I guess the resemblance was the most amusing thing... both wore the same kind of clothes, they had the same hair (or rather lack of it), they each held a folded newspaper (something my dad always has when he meets us), so I guess you could completely understand his mistake. All except for one tiny little thing...he was at least half my Dad's height! Real Grandad and miniature Doppelganger Granded (who was a lovely, if somewhat bemused man), both agreed that it must have been the hair that had caused the confusion...

This turned out not to be the only calamity for poor S during our trip home. On the Saturday we had some shopping to do for my sister's forthcoming wedding... First stop John Lewis. We accomplished the first task, and jumped on the escalator to the floor above. R alighted at the top without any issues. S holding my hand, tried to get off, but suddenly hit the floor with a bang... I then realised that part of his shoe lace had got sucked into the side of the escalator, and the poor little chap was stuck fast. It's funny how in situations like this, all refinement goes out the window (not that I had much in the first place), and before I knew it, I was lying on the floor of the shop in amongst a crowd of onlookers (with one elderly lady screaming "press the emergency button, press the emergency button" at the top of her voice, whilst standing directly in front of it!!), desperately untangling a panicking four year old. It was over in seconds, but it felt like we were there for at least an hour. He was very stoic about it once he had recovered, but funnily enough, he agreed with his sister's suggestion of getting the lift back down again instead!!

On the Sunday we ventured into central London to cheer on my Little Sis, who after all her hard work for Cancer Research last year, had been offered a place to run the gruelling 26 mile course this year. There was such a fantastic atmosphere, on the most beautiful, hot and sunny day, which of course meant that the running conditions were diabolical. After watching thousands of crazily dressed dedicated runners file passed, we spotted her and were able to spur her on. Unfortunately, she wasn't able to complete the course after collapsing from dehydration at Mile 17. They wouldn't let her carry on anymore (even though she had desperately wanted to), and it was so sad to see how disappointed she was. I have to say that I don't think she had anything to feel bad about, but she felt like she had let everyone down. Personally, I think that in those conditions I would have struggled to run 200 metres, let alone 17 miles!! Ever the fighter (she's as stubborn as her big sister, bless her!!), she came away saying, there's always next year, and we will be back to watch should she chose to do it....

Part two of our trip home to follow later...


  1. Such a shame your sister didn't get to finish. I can't imagine how disappointed she would have been.

    I am always scared of my kids falling on an escalator! I'd have been so panicked that had happened to us!

  2. thanks for the follow! My google connect is not working to follow you back. so frustrating.

    Your grandad story has just made me laugh a lot. It's so hard to explain to children it is the situation and not them being laughed at! x

  3. Oh Congrats to your sister!, I wouldn't have been able to make it to the end of the street! Glad you like the Dutch stories and the driving is going slowly but ok!

  4. @MMM, I know poor thing, the people that completed it did incredibly well, it was just so hot... I also have a fear of escalators having fallen down one as a child, but I have never fallen up one!

    @George's Mum, thanks for the comment, nice to "meet" you! :)

    "Windmill Tales, thank you! Good luck with the driving, I have only been driving for a few years, and have gone from detesting it to quite liking it now...;)

  5. well that's 17 miles further than I'd have managed. Such an achievement to get there never mind whether you finish or not. As for escalators I can't stand them and am always envisaging shoelace trapping type incidents every time we use one!!

  6. 17 miles is a fantastic achievement. I would have been terrified to get an escalator ever again!

  7. @MummyDichotomy & TheMadHouse:- thank you, I think so too! As for escalators, we will be taking the stairs if any of us have shoes with laces next time!!


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