Picture the scene…
It was 2012 and Britain was gripped by the malaise of a double dip recession, the economy was on its knees begging for the boom to return and families were feeling the pressure.
This was no where truer than the Blackmore house, hard times had fallen the two working parents and their three children. In the good times they had enjoyed extravaganzas like eating at Pizza Express for family night on a Friday, now they all made do with sharing a £1.49 Margarita from Aldi whilst huddled round the gas radiator playing Dominos for fun.
Times were tough….
But they were still a family and northernmum and her long suffering husband he who helped create them swore to make it better, to do all they could to give their children a good life.
But they worried…
Recent events had shown a turn in personality in their oldest daughter; a house move, a new school year, a return to work for her father had caused Twin Girl to become a body of worries, afflicted by nerves which were keeping her awake at night. She was trying to be brave but even school had commented that the bright shining little girl who normally graced their classroom had been replaced by a shy, anxious little thing who was terrified to put a foot wrong.
Then one day the sun shone a little brighter on recessed England when twin girl flew home from school with a skip in her step, she ran into the kitchen and greeted her parents with a smile they had not seen for weeks.
‘I am star of the week’ she cried with joy in her voice.
Northernmum stifled a sob to see her eldest girl happy once more and silently thanked the perceptive teacher at school.
‘We are so proud’ cried out he who helped create them ‘what shall we do to celebrate?’
Twin girl’s eyes dropped to the floor once more, ‘could we’ she mumbled ‘could we maybe go to the cinema?’
Northernmum and he who helped create them exchanged worried glances, with finances as they were and a trip to the flicks for five costing the same as a one bedroom flat they didn’t know if this was a dream they could make come true. But then northernmum went bold as she looked at her daughters face and she declared with more conviction than she felt; ‘darling you shall go to the pics.’
So off they went with snacks sewed into hemlines to avoid suspicion and water hidden in babies’ bottles.
The cinema was deserted barr a few lonely souls, one man could be seen trying to exchange his first born son for a ticket to see the latest Twilight film whilst another was offering a cow in exchange for a seat.
Northernmum walked to the counter with twin boy at her side; ‘a family ticket please’ she said.
The teenage girl peered at her ‘how many?’ she glared.
‘A family’ stuttered northernmum ‘that’s all.’
‘How many in the family’ sneered the cashier, ‘I needs to know init’
Forlorn, northernmum muttered ‘five, we are five.’
Glee lit up the teenagers eyes ‘five? That’s not a family, a family is four, and you need to pay extra.’
‘B.b.b.but’ stuttered northernmum wondering how they would eat that week ‘the baby is but one years old.’
The teenager looked crestfallen ‘oh,’ she said ‘she has a lap seat then and you donts need to pay, she can’t sit on her own seat though.’
Relieved northernmum looked through her purse for a few gold coins and then suddenly a voice piped up…
‘Mummy’ said the fog horn, ‘BB isn’t one, she is two isn’t she.’
Northernmum turned the same shade as her crimson boots..
‘No honey,’ she said with a tight smile ‘she is one, remember.’
‘Are you daft?’ exclaimed her son, ‘she has been around for two years not one.’
The teenager raised a pierced eyebrow and silently held out her palm.
‘Oh yes,’ fake giggled northernmum, ‘it was her birthday last week, silly me.’ She said in a sing song voice.
‘Are you bonkers mummy? She turned two ages ago, back in May, you needs to take Nanny’s memory pills.’ Cried Twin boy.
Northernmum died a little inside from shame, handed over the gold and slunk off to the welcome darkness of the movie theatre.
There are two morals to this tale dear reader…
One) Lying is bad and no good will come off it
Two) leave the kid with the smart mouth behind when you are trying to pull a fast one!