Yet again, I take my hat off to women, and especially Mums, everywhere. I have a limited range of skills and multi-tasking is DEFINITELY not one of them. There, I’ve said it and I’m happy to recognise my weaknesses.

There are many examples of me trying and failing, in fact too numerous to even contemplate remembering, and I never learn. Today was a perfect example.

Thursdays are often a classic race against time to get all three home from school, changed into swimming kit and out of the door again to get to swimming lessons. Now some of you may say ‘why not get the kids to change at school/in the car’ and indeed, that would probably be the most sensible option, but it would involve someone out of the four of us remembering to get the kit in the car in the morning in the first place – building Trump’s Mexican wall would be easier….

So week in, week out, it’s pick up Charlie at 3.30, home by 3.50, all three change, take on fluids and sugars (obviously, ”cos we’re exercising Daddy!’), try to get at least one piece of homework done before launching back in the car (departure 4.10), back to school one. Invariably we arrive with seconds to spare, so the three have already donned swimming caps and goggles and race across the school car park, shedding clothes that I will later recover from hedges and wedged beneath wheels…. Imagine a junior transition stage of a triathlon… actually don’t, that would be organised… and have marshals – maybe that’s where I’m going wrong!

Anyway, shortly after getting home and corralling all to get changed for swimming I got a call on my mobile. Ordinarily I wouldn’t take it in order to focus on one task at a time (see, a coping strategy for my inability to multi-task), but it was an international number with a +1 area code. I didn’t bother to check the source as Ali is working over the side of the world, so naturally assumed it was her. Schoolboy error. Ali is a Star Wars baby (May the fourth….), so I promptly launched into my best rendition of ‘Happy birthday to you’, keeping it suitably worded in case small ears may be listening.

Yep. Wasn’t my gorgeous wife. It was a contact I’ve been trying to put a piece of work together for (trying to keep the grey matter turning and get some sort of income), who happens to be based in Canada….same area code…..bollocks. I’m fairly sure we’ve all done it – the hastily drafted venomous email that gets sent to the wrong person (no? only me then?) or the misdial only to launch into a tirade on it being answered (no? that would be me again then..) or the singing happy birthday to someone you’ve been trying to impress with your professionalism (no? definitely only me then!) – it’s always followed by that heart-stopping ‘oh shit!’ moment when you can literally feel the colour drain from your face (and other extremities), even though they can’t see you and you literally cannot think of anything to say.

Thankfully he saw the funny side and has even asked for a copy of my greatest hits…

Note to self – however well the day seems to be going, always, always, ALWAYS be aware that Charlie cock-up is never far away and DEFINITELY don’t believe that you can multi-task….

Tonight, wine is my friend…

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