Last weekend, I went north to the wonderful city of Manchester to attend BlogOn.
If you’re a blogger, you’ll know what I’m on about. If you aren’t, it’s a blogging conference. I first met Laura of BlogOn-founding fame during my trip to Paris in November, and she sold it to me there and then. I can’t put my finger on it, but I think maybe it was the mention of wine and free stuff.
I couldn’t wait.
After all, little is more exciting to a parent than the prospect of a weekend away sans kids. With wine and free stuff.
With the trip already in my diary, it was also a great excuse to arrange a girlie get together with some other mums I have known since my oldest child was but a fetus, where we bonded over complaining over out multitude of pregnancy ailments, and collectively facepalmed at stupid questions.
We got ourselves a cheap AirBNB, chucked our gladrags on and went out for food and drinks.
There are some predictable truths about the mums’ weekend away, which I have summarised here:
1) You will find all manner of shit in your luggage.
I’m talking child-related paraphernalia.
I took actual stones with me on my trip to Paris. Stones, that my child had picked up from the beach and put into my pocket.
And like the dutiful parent I bought them home again too, just in case they ever asked for them back. They never did.
2) You will be more excited about the prospect of a lie-in than the night out.
But goddamn it, you probably won’t get it because a) body clock, hello 5am! and b) all that food and/or alcohol isn’t good for the digestive system and you’re not used to it anymore/getting ooooold and fuck me, heartburn.
HOW IS THAT FAIR?
3) You will start drinking a bit too early.
FREEDOM and all that. Plus, it’s so expensive to buy a drink out nowadays! Might as well start at home… And just like that, it starts to unravel.
4) You’ll realise you are no longer practised in the art of wearing high heels.
This will involve searching out somewhere to sit instantly upon entering any venue. No seats? Back the hell out quickly. Same goes if it’s too damn loud and you can’t hear each other speak.
What the hell is this music? Is that from Trolls? I’m too old for this shit.
Isn’t there a 90s bar somewhere with *decent music* and ample seating?
5) Conversation will probably revolve around your children…
But beware, after a few drinks you might be tempted to start on the birth stories.
Do not do that. You have to share breakfast with these people.
6) Your stamina may have deserted you.
In all likelihood, you’ll return home at a reasonable hour for a cup of tea. No shame in that. Make sure it’s a decaf though eh?
So back to our night out…
Sadly, almost predictably, our revelry (read: drinking beer in a place with chairs) was prematurely cut short when one of our party starting feeling a bit ill, so back to the AirBNB we headed, at which point she started being sick. It wasn’t until we went to bed a few hours later that I started too – and our game of puke-tag carried on all night. At about 6am, shattered, and smelling of vomit, I finally managed to drop off; but only when sat upright in bed.
The irony did not escape me that down on the south coast, my children and my parents would just be starting the day together.
I did not get my lie in.
When shit like this happens…
7) You’ll realise it’s good to have mum friends.
When you’re sick, they make you a cup of tea and toast in bed, dry your hair and help you out.