Blogging has opened up a whole new world to me and my family, a world which I never knew existed 3 years ago. We get to attend really cool events, we receive fab products to review and we get to meet some lovely people who we may never have come across if I hadn’t started Mummy Matters. Our circle of friends has grown and we look forward to meeting up with them as Blog Events present themselves to us.
Yesterday, we were invited to a blog event, along with Cafebebe and Little Miss, being hosted by Boots at The Savoy Hotel in London for afternoon tea. Because the event wasn’t due to start until 2pm we decided that we would travel down early so that we could have some lunch, do a little bit of sightseeing and take the children to Hamleys Toy Store for a wander around and perhaps a souvenir from our trip.
The day didn’t start well with Beanie Boy waking at 6am instead of 7am and then Little Bean refusing to get ready to go, she wanted to stay in her pyjamas!!! A bit of bribery later and I managed to get her into the shower and soon she was looking more beautiful than ever, although now we were running a good half an hour late.
Finally at 9.30am we hit the road and our adventure began. Beanie Boy stuck to his side of the bargain which was to sleep for the majority of the journey whereas the girls were bored and asking every 15 minutes or so the question that every parent dreads on long car journeys “are we nearly there yet?”. I’m normally very well organised and set up the in-car DVD for the girls but yesterday, I forgot!
The closer we got to London the darker the day became and soon we were travelling in driving rain, this is when it occurred to me that I was a totally rubbish Mummy as I had forgotten to pack a coat for Little Bean or Beanie Boy and I had nothing waterproof for me.
I have been driving to and around London regularly for the last 5-6 years and it never phases me. Yesterday we were able to park at a gem of a car park I was told about 6 years ago that it easy to access, always has spaces, is very close to central London and isn’t too expensive. I must have been in this car park 40-50 times in the last couple of years, but yesterday as I drove into the underground car park I clipped the kerb as I took my parking ticket and feared that I had perhaps scratched my alloy. As I drove around the car park to find a space I commented to Cafebebe that I didn’t feel the car was driving very well. I found my space, got out and began to unload the pushchairs when I heard a loud hissing noise. I looked around for the source of the sound to see this . . .
‘Bugger’ was my intitial thought! But not to panic, I rang my Husband (who works at a Motor Dealership) and told him what had happened. He immediately put me onto Danny, the Senior Service Advisor who said that he could talk me through how to fix it (because my car is a 7 seater I do not have space for a spare wheel). With the help of Danny I located the repair kit and followed his instructions by filling my tyre with the special glue compound and re-inflating the tyre. When the tyre reached about 25psi I began to hear hissing again and felt around the tyre to find a 4 inch scratch along the wall of the tyre which had a big hole in it. This was not something I would be able to repair with the glue compound. I then got on the phone to the Roadside Recovery Company whose policy I had taken out with my car insurance only to be told that they couldn’t find any record of me on their system and they would not be able to help me. Again I spoke to my Husband who said that we should go off and enjoy our day whilst he phoned around and arranged for a tyre company to repair my car whilst I was away and it would all be fixed ready for us to drive home in the evening. Hooray!
The time had now got on somewhat and so we had to head straight to The Savoy for our blog event, we arrived 20 minutes late and feeling very hot and flustered with hungry children in tow as we had missed our lunch, though it had stopped raining so at least something had gone our way! We decided that we would switch our plans around and do sightseeing, Hamleys and have tea after the event before heading home so our day wouldn’t be totally spoilt.
The event was going really well until I received a call from my Husband to say that the tyre company had quoted us £80 for a £50 tyre (we’re in the know) but we didn’t have any choice so we had to go with it. Half an hour later I received another call to say that the original tyre company didn’t have the tyre but he had called around and found the only company that did have the correct tyre but they quoted us £130 plus a call-out fee for our £50 tyre. Worse still, they had been to fit it but couldn’t get their van into the underground car park so I needed to meet them back at the car park at 5.45pm plus they wanted another £60 for coming out in the evening. My Husband told them where they could stick this extra charge as he had told them from the beginning I was in an underground car park and they agreed that they would come back free of charge. This of course meant that we could no longer follow through with our plans for sightseeing, Hamleys or tea out, as soon as the event was over we had to walk back to the car park. Just as we reached the car park I received another call from my Husband to tell me that they wouldn’t be able to make it to me for another 45 minutes. By this time, the children, Cafebebe and I were very tired, cold and hungry but we found a park and ate what food we could find in our bags and let the girls have a run around. We could easily pass time for 45 minutes surely? Yes we could but 45 minutes later, no sign of the tyre company and no call to say what was happening. My Husband had made many calls to them throughout the evening to remind them that there were 2 small children, a baby and a pregnant lady in our party, some urgency would be appreciated. An hour and half after they were supposed to meet us there was still no sign, we were very cold, tired and fed up so when finally the call centre decided to phone me they received a rather large and angry piece of my mind. I reminded him that had they called me sooner to tell me that their guy was going to be so late we could have enjoyed our time in London instead of freezing in a park. But still it was another 15 minutes before their man arrived.
By the time we left London it was 8pm and we still needed to stop at services for something to eat. Finally we arrived home at 11pm and not a moment too soon. I was feeling very sorry for myself and very cross with myself, a day that should have been fun and relaxed was very stressful, very upsetting, cost me far more money that I could afford and all because I clipped a kerb!!!
Throughout the day, my friend Karin kept me strong and my two babies kept putting smiles on my faces. Beanie Boy just smiles all the time and never got stressed out once but Little Bean turned into ‘Mother’, I cried a few times and each time Little Bean gave me a hug, patted my back and said “don’t cry Mummy it will be ok”. Thank goodness for my children.