First days back - In the name of Thiago - Day 51

Elisa was back at school after half term, I was back at work after the break too and most significantly Angelica had her first day back at work since going off on maternity leave. We’ve not spoken about her first day at length as to be honest I’m not sure that really helps Angelica. Suffice to say that she got through the day and having got through the day, the prospect of getting through the next one doesn’t seem so improbable.

I’ve had a mixed sort of day. It started reasonably as I caught up with a few things and then it dropped off before a positive meeting with a colleague that understands where I’m coming from meant it ended on a more positive note. I’m sure most of you will appreciate that I need to maintain that level of vagueness!

So that’s the first two thirds of the day dealt with – but did anything remotely interesting actually happen or at least anything that I’m comfortable to write about post 5pm? Well yes, rarely for a Monday night, there was actually.

Matt and Pippa a couple who Angelica and I were very close to while they were in the UK are over from France at the moment. Matt is four years younger than me, better looking and, to me at least, seems supremely fit. You’d think that I’d hate the bastard but nope he’s pretty sound.

 (Dave Taylor on the left and Matt Paszek on the right with yours truly front and centre of course!)

They’re off to Japan in the morning as a treat for Matt’s 40th. Just for comparative purposes, I went to Derby for my 40th. Just saying. Bastard. Matt was my regular tennis playing mate for a while so when he scarpered to France in May 2018, I was left short. Unusually for me, who holds grudges forever and a day, I have since forgiven him. In all seriousness they are lovely people but as is often the case when you’re making a flying visit – everyone wants a piece of you and there’s only so much Matt and Pippa to go round!

They have three lovely children and Elisa is very close to their eldest daughter Elsie so it was great fun to see a lot of Elsie’s old schoolmates running amok in the Dick Turpin, or the Turnip as Angelica and I affectionately refer to the God forsaken shithole. To be fair, yes it is crap but it does also serve a purpose – one of its main purposes being that no one seems to give a shit that there are kids running around everywhere!

I also had a good chat with one of the other Dads, Dave Taylor. I don’t know Dave that well but this big fella has a heart of gold and he’s happy to get involved with my walk and fundraising this summer. He’s always said – as has his lovely wife Lisa – that if ever we need anything, they will be there for us. And when they say that, I know they mean it 100 per cent because I can see it in their eyes. Sorry that sounded a little bit over the top, it wasn’t meant to be – it’s just a really good feeling knowing when someone’s got your back.

I dropped Elisa off at scouts for what is the first time for her tonight. One of her schoolmates Grace has been going for a while and when I deposited Elisa at the right church at the second time of asking, her face lit up. My daughter is nothing if not a very expressive girl. She makes me so damn proud. Even more so now I guess since all my eggs are in her basket so to speak. I just want to give her all the chances that her brother will now sadly never have. I will do my best.

That’s it for me this evening folks. I know I sound like a broken record but please people if you haven’t done so already, help me to raise £10,000 for Royal Stoke Hospital and Birmingham Children’s Hospital. Every donation is crucial so don’t leave it all to someone else!


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