As I said in my prologue, we hit a variety of hold ups and annoyances on the way down South, but arrived safely at 12.45.
My sister was spending the day with a gentleman friend and had already left, and Mum was very apologetic at not having any cake so Hubby hunted round for some biscuits while the kettle was boiling.
We asked Mum if she’d like to go out as it was such a lovely day, and as we had a couple of things we needed to get for the boat, took her down to Poole Quay.
Mum didn’t recognise any of the old roads, not even the one she used to live in when she and Dad first got married. Mind you, it has all changed, and Number 2 was demolished years ago.
She did remember the Customs House though, and it was across from this that we sat whilst Hubby did his ‘shopping’.
As we are only in March, there were few people about, but the Harbour Island boat trip vessels were along the quayside.
It was a bit chilly, so Mum put her scarf on and I pulled her hood up. We sat there looking across at the Sunseeker boats, with me giving Mum some idea of how many times our home would fit inside one, which was at least 6!
When Hubby came back, we teased Mum that we were really there to choose our new boat, though I would love to see us try and park one here on the Marina, that would be after we’d left the top half of it on the river trying to get under the bridges!
We walked back to the car, taking it nice and steady with Mum holding on to my arm as she was a bit wobbly on her feet and some of the pavement was cobbled.
Hamworthy Park wasn’t far away, so we went there to exercise the dog and have something to eat (this is my picture).
Maggie remembered where she was and went haring off as soon as we opened the car door. The wind was brisk to say the least, so Hubby walked her along the beach as Mum and I made our way to the cafe (another google image below) .
It looked closed, but there were tables outside suggesting otherwise, so we were able to go in and get two cups of tea.
Hubby joined us a short while later, and we were allowed to bring Maggie in provided she was on a lead. She settled down under the table after a bit of fuss from another customer who was waiting for his take out order.
Looking out over the kids paddling pool (my pictures from last year), we ordered our meals, a full breakfast for Hubby, chicken chunks and chips for Mum, and scampi and chips for me. Everything was cooked fresh, so it was lovely and hot, and we thoroughly enjoyed them.
As we were leaving, Mum said she needed the loo, which was next door (the white part of the building in the cafe picture).
Oh boy, what a laugh.
The largest cubicle was in a bit of a mess, and the second had no toilet paper. The third was occupied by a little girl whose Mummy was waiting for her by the cubicle door.
I pulled off a load of loo roll from the large one, and gave it to Mum who was trying to get inside the other.
I told her she’d have to turn sideways and shuffle a bit so that I could close the door, but I’d be right outside if she needed me.
The little girl, who I’d guess to be around 6 years of age, came out and gave me a funny look. I smiled and said I was waiting for my Mummy.
She must have thought that very strange as an old lady (me) doesn’t normally have a Mummy (young, like hers).
She looked at me and said ‘Really?’, so I turned towards the closed door and said
‘You alright in there Mum?’ and got a positive reply.
Satisfied, the little girl washed her hands, then with a big smile and a happy wave said ‘Bye’ and left.
Meanwhile, judging by the shuffling noises coming from behind the door, my Mum was having a bit of bother. She asked if I had her stick, which I didn’t, then realised it had fallen down behind the toilet, and she couldn’t reach it. Not a problem I thought. But there was………. getting Mum out of the cubicle when she got ‘trapped’.
I’ve learned in the past not to fluster my Mum, so we had to take things slowly and quietly for ‘highly technical’ maneuvers to get her out without Hubby or a cutting crew.
Whilst holding the door, I suggested she put her back against the side cubicle wall and breathing in, move as far towards the back as she could. I gently pushed the door until it eased past her, and pink faced, she came out.
Have you ever realised just how many layers of clothing an elderly person has to tuck in?
Washing her hands was a learning curve for her as she’d never used one of these all in one things where you put your hands underneath after pushing a separate button for water, soap, and then air. She got in a bit of a muddle saying nothing was happening, but that was only because she hadn’t put her hands in far enough.
Duly lathered, rinsed and dried, I zippered her up, and we started to make our way back to the car.
Something was wrong as she stopped and started to fiddle with her shoulder.
Apparently the strap of her bra was falling down and she couldn’t reach in to pull it back up. So I did, ferreting around for it like a baby in search of mother’s milk, and I started to laugh. When I told Mum why, she laughed louder and harder than I did, so I told her to be careful as she might have an accident, even though she’d just ‘been’.
The pair of us were giggling like a couple of kids when we joined Hubby, who rolled his eyes skywards when we told him why.
Oh it was so good to hear Mum laugh like that, and wonderful that she was enjoying herself so much.
We drove back home, and realising we would catch some serious traffic now, decided to hang on for a couple of hours before our departure. Mum was so very chatty about enjoying her day, the fun we had, and how much we’d laughed.
We had another cup of tea, and my sister arrived home around 5.15. With enthusiasm and animation, Mum proceeded to tell her about her outing, where she’d been and what she’d had for lunch.
We left about half an hour later, though it was almost 10.30 by the time we got home.
We are still unfamiliar with this particular route going back, especially in the dark.
We changed drivers about 3 miles from junction 17, and I drove the rest of the way.