Every second week I work six days non-stop so Sunday is the only morning I have without the icy cold splash of the alarm clock to wake me up. On Sunday I get to choose when the loud, droning news-voices drag me out of my dream. The other days they are imposed on my ears at the awful army-like time of all the fives – 5:55. Hubby’s horrible waking hour to give him time to unfurl from sleep, creep quietly downstairs, noisily scrape out his muesli bowl, wash, dress and drive the fifty long miles to work.
On Sundays we still wake early but we do so naturally, our bodies alone telling us to rise and shine. Hubby still rises earlier than me but creeps downstairs dressed as Freddy Mercury, in a tight, black, shiny one-piece suit, ready to jump onto his horribly expensive, light-as-a-feather bicycle (the price per kilo is surely the same as Russian caviar) after a quick cup of green tea.
Often I sleep for hours more, but this morning I was woken by the pitifully sweet mewing of chubby cat number one outside the bedroom door.
‘Mummy, Mummy, let me in’ she cried.
Yes, I am the proverbial cats’ mother. Ask my real daughters. Once in, she pretended to be interested in French politics, purring all the way through the news until I finally decided to get up.
Then the morning was one big potter around. Make the tea potter. Almost burn the toast potter. Eat and drink the two together potter, comfortably sitting in my favourite faded, cat-scratched, leather armchair beside the fireplace, my huge striped napkin placed under my chin to catch the falling purple jam. From here I can see out both windows and watch Chubs, seated on her favourite armchair, watching other cats walk past in our garden. How dare they! And little blue tits jumping from branch to branch on the fig tree outside the window, teasing her with their chirpy voices.
‘Forget it Fatty. You’ll never catch us.’
Little L then descended, dishevelled and sleepy-eyed, and joined me for her self-made, beautifully laid-out breakfast spread. Freshly-squeezed orange juice, natural yoghourt carefully spooned into her favourite blue china miniature bowl, cereal, fancy loose-leaf tea, with a name I never remember, infused in a fine porcelain cup. Whose child is this? I have neither the notion nor the patience to create such a feast.
A quick phone call to Maw and Paw to commiserate about the rugby, then potter, potter, potter once more. Shortbread made. Dishes done. Potatoes peeled, steamed, mashed, then placed on top of yesterday-made mince for shepherd’s pie. Bed changed. Shower had. Hair dried. All to the slow, leisurely beat of the Sunday morning drum.
And now, yippee, it’s raining, so the fire has been lit, the dishes left undone, the feet are up on the multi-stained coffee table and the addictive blog potter has begun.
When I’m retired will every morning feel like Sunday morning or will that special Sunday feeling never go away?
Here’s hoping, because there’s nothing quite like it.