The points had been clocking up for four and a half years. 1,642 lost lie-ins and countless self-sacrificing moments later, the time had finally come. Guilty of wanton abandon [kids and husband “abandoned” at home, that is], she/I/mum was letting loose in Amsterdam. City of freedom, cannabis and prostitution.
For a Mum on Tour.
No sooner had the plane touched down, armed with racing green finger nails, studded biker boots, a dangerously short skirt and the smallest handbag that could possibly cram phone-keys-wallet-perfume-mascara-blusher-gloss [& other incredibly important non-baby-related possessions], I was remarkably transformed.
Anonymous in Amsterdam.
This was a show not to be missed.
Foot-loose and fancy-free and for one night only, I climbed on board into a crazy lazy haze of a place, where pride and prejudice were prohibited, sense and sensibility shunned and all rhyme and reason wilfully thrown overboard. Persuasion? It didn’t take much. All the world is a stage but I was no longer playing suburban mum. Enveloped in a second childishness, I was now an indulgent spectator, people-watching over a cast of incredibles. Lady-boys in bowler hats, burlesque stripper girls of generous proportions [that’s being polite] and millionaire porn-star producers trailed by a harem of tastelessly dressed floozies. Caressed by gin-kissed lips and fanciful fingers of smoke, I saw it all. Or at least, I thought I did?
OK, so herein ends the moulin rouge-esque fairy tale. Flying above the clouds on a sleazy-jet Airbus A319 was about as high as I got. Barely 24 hours after bidding a weepy farewell to my 2.4 family, the mere whisper of a Dutch baby cooing in the distance was enough to reduce me to tears. And don’t get me started on Facetime or Skype! No matter how many Marks & Spencer “Meal for One”s I’d piled into the fridge [ouch, salt in wound], how many play-dates I’d arranged or how many notes I’d scattered around the house, nothing could compensate this most singular trip of mine. With guilt-ridden, galavanting “MUM” written all over my face, I didn’t even get picked up by late night scavengers among the red lights.
And even more abysmally, the morning after the night before brought no welcome surprises. My altogether mumsy body clock did not forget to work it’s timely magic. Waking me up. Right on cue. At 06.37. There was to be no prescribed lie-in for this Mum on Tour. Thank Goodness there were shops. Fighting all manner of intoxications from le previous soiree, I put on some slap and did what a mum with a spare hour does best….spend. With a wallet lined full of euro-tastic pocket money, it would be rude not to splash out. On everyone apart from myself. [Of course?]
Coming home to see that the house was still standing was a relief. In fact, it has never been tidier. Annoyingly so.
The local curry house has clearly never been so busy [the fullness of the fridge being a slight give-away].
And the husband has never been so pleased to see me.
Maybe i’ll go away more often.