This week found the whole family in bed with a cold. And someone was at fault. Someone was guilty. Someone had to be blamed. We were all suffering too much. The clear and outright winner for most unpopular family member was My Husband. He’d gone on a business trip to The Land of His Fathers (flat, lots of dykes and inhabited by people with a penchant for shmoking odd grasses) and foolishly breathed in and out on the plane.
When My Husband is ill he does not get Man Flu. He simply carries on as if a trifling little rodent is nibbling at his ankle. Shakes it off and strides out into the world to show all those other cissies sheltering under their duvets what it means to be a real man with a cold.
Until this week when, falling like a giant redwood in a forest in the other Land of His Fathers (two oceans, curious antipathy to tea and run by politicians with a penchant for invading countries they do not own), he crept upstairs whispering “I’m not feeling so good...”
My Mother, who was staying, went home. I took Vitamin C, First Defence and prayed. Younger Son, assured of his own invincibility, continued playing on his Ipod. I stocked up with tissues, proprietary cold and flu remedies and prayed some more.
By Wednesday we were all in bed. The desire within me to apportion blame was strong, rather like The Force in Star Wars. In an attempt to keep quiet, I read the whole of The Deathly Hallows in one day. I did embroidery. I wondered how greasy any one person’s hair can really get. I went quietly mad with the effort of Being Reasonable.
My Mother is made of sterner stuff. As My Husband came off the phone after speaking to her, I croaked “How is she?” “Oh she was just ringing to ask how I was. Made sure she let me know it was my fault she caught the cold, though” he replied grumpily.
Well said Mother.