I've adjusted to living 24/7 with my husband. It wasn't easy at first. We struggled to make space for each other and we are now much better at it. But the idea of having my own space for a few days was rather nice. And whilst we're on the subject, I should say that I also crave time away from my children. I am assuming this is normal. I don't resent them in any way, I still love their constant chatter and noise; I don't feel I'm a danger towards them in any way. No....I just would really like a little 'me' time occasionally and I get precious little. So on Tuesday, as I returned from the school walk and closed the door behind me, it was - hurray - just me and Darwin.
Tuesday went fine. We kept the log fire going on our own without 'Man' watching over it in his usual protective and altogether paranoid manner. We ate, drank (water) and were merry though at bedtime, Romy missed her papa and had to call him to say goodnight, of course.
The next morning, Mateo even got up early without the usual prodding, poking and yelling needed to extract him from his pit. I went to teach my Spanish class - a good turn out and a merry bunch. Home again to prepare a favourite of the children - spaghetti bolognese - and to prepare for my afternoon's teaching.
I got slightly sidetracked reading my favourite blogs....no blame attached to that, but just so you know I wasn't idling my time away on YouTube or busy cleaning the bath - no, it was fellow bloggers that distracted me, so that suddenly, it was past the time to go and meet the children from school.
So I dashed out, slamming the inner door (you have to or it doesn't close properly) - and as the Yale lock clicked in.....I had that sinking feeling. The stomach dropped, the jaw fell open, the hand went out instinctively and uselessly to the door. The keys were still inside.
Running down to school - no point making a mountain out of a molehill and being late too - all I kept thinking was 'We're locked out; we're locked out; we're locked out!' in fifty shades of grey. Then I bumped into Juan Carlos, a friend and fellow parent, and subjected him to a stream of unconscious thought - in Spanish - relating to being locked out; having left the keys inside the house; including the car keys; wondering whether Mateo had a spare set or not; wondering whether Darwin had food and water; wondering whether I had turned off the gas under the bolognaise sauce..or not;...and so on.
By the time I met the children, I had decided that we would keep calm and see if Mateo had his keys. I'd asked him just the day before and he couldn't find them but I had a sneaking hope that maybe in an emergency, they'd be somewhere on his person...one had to hope. Juan Carlos offered to take the children home with him and feed them, which was a relief at least. However, as we walked home and I explained the situation, making it sound as 'fun' as possible, I said that in the last resort, we'd have to wait until Papa got home.....then I had another sinking feeling. FR had no keys with him. There was no last resort.
Brain into overdrive - we HAD to get in. Romy was despatched to her friend's house; Ruy and I came home planning to seek out our landlord (I was pretty sure he had no keys but maybe he could help...only Ruy knew where he lived. Good old Ruy!) but first, we thought we'd ask our neighbours if they had a ladder we could borrow. The first one didn't. The second came out with a rickety old step ladder, with a missing step halfway up. Hmmm.
The plan was to go up to the balcony and check whether we could get in through one of the windows there.
And the backup plan was to go up onto the terrace and enter through there as I knew the door was open.
But the terrace was far too high for the step ladder...
we'd need a big ladder to get up here!
So, with fingers crossed and much unnecessary advice from the neighbours, I advanced up the ladder. Despite my neighbour saying to stand on the electric cables and hoist myself up that way (or words to that effect in Spanish) - I couldn't do it. I just couldn't reach - would you?
So we sent Ruy up. He couldn't reach either but I got him to stand on my hand and I gave him a good push so he could reach the railings and bless him, he pulled himself up and over, safely onto the balcony.
Oh what joy!! Romy's window opened up and we were in!!
My angel hero. He was cool about his heroic action but secretly very pleased especially as he's not so good at heights and has an exaggerated sense of danger.
It was a win-win situation in the end. We got in; Ruy was heroic; Romy had lunch at her friend's house...and when Mateo came home, we found the spare keys in his school rucksack!!
What had started with a sinking feeling ended up leaving us all feeling absolutely as high as kites!
And we had great fun telling FR about it when he came home - seeing his face of disbelief and incredulity at the irresponsibility of his wife and the mother of his children - and being won over by the great fun we'd had in solving our little 'problem'.
Needless to say, if I can't feel my keys in my pocket since that moment, I start to break out in a cold sweat. You see, we have made sure that the door to Romy's balcony is now firmly locked!