School Run

Well. We’re back. Five fleeting nights away – none of which offered much in the way of sleep; first I was nervously anticipating handing children over and then I was weeping into my pillow that I had.

Our maiden school run involved a round trip of 1,300 klms and meant 22 hours on the road.

We watched the sun rise. Both ways.


We ate a picnic breakfast on the bonnet in the bush. Both ways.


We watched the road unravel like rope behind of us.


Yet still lie with disconcerting length before us …


We contended with African traffic jams deluxe. Both ways. In precisely the same spot.


Back in the Outpost I am trying to be upbeat.  No mean feat in light of fact two of my three children are on the other side of this vast country.

 To add insult to injury the chickens decided to turn up their toes and die whilst we were away. The nightwatchmen, who does almost nothing but sleep, only occassionally rousing himself to stretch his legs in order he does not suffer DVT presumably, informs me that the chickens in my garden are dying because the mango tree, which is in flower, is shedding tiny blossom. He says the blossom is bad for chickens. Perhaps they eat it and it makes them sick. I don’t know. I was too tired to care, frankly. But if the fussy birds object to a little bit of blossom, I hate to think what they’ll think when a sodding great rock hard full grown green mango drops on their silly little heads. Hat is as fed up of poultry farming as I. We are going to get a goat.

And in the meantime we are going to stick up a picture of her older siblings that will make us giggle every time we look at it; this one perhaps – karaoke in the car. And alot of laughing. On the way there at any rate.


We embark on our own school tomorrow, Hat and I. In the absence of bloody hens to tend to, we’ll get stuck in earlier than I’d anticipated. You cannot survive in the Outpost if you can’t find a Bright Side to cast eyes upon, even if it seems a little remote.

Not Outpost. Bright Side.

13 Responses to “School Run”

  1. retrocolonialmama Says:

    Babes, sympathy from one outpost to another. Re; Mbusi, we’re trying to find a ram to get our goat pregnant (believe it or not she’s called Poppy Popcorn! – not named by me)so if and when we get watoto do you want one?

  2. Pig in the kitchen Says:

    I’m glad you got safely there and back, I like the road unravelling like a rope. A shame about the chickens, a goat is a far better proposition, will you be able to milk it? There’s an animal husbandry lesson for you!
    Up the bright side!

  3. Drunk Mummy Says:

    Trying to look on the Bright Side – I nominated you for an Inspirational Blogger award. Dust off your posh frock and stroll up that red carpet!

  4. minx Says:

    The power of positive tears.

  5. reluctantmemsahib Says:

    thanks all.

    retroc – thanks kind offer. have a contact here who can offer goats; she began with two and now has 101. I think we’ll just stick to the one. no space for 101. Or even three come to think of it.

    Pig – animal husbandry, now that’s be an interest facet to Hat’s education. goat milk – doesn’t that make delish cheese?

    DM. thank you, thank you, thank you. I was very flattered to see that. I shall polish gong and dust off (dust being operative word) one and only posh frock and saunter down that red carpet. certainly a bright side. thanksx

    Minx. thank you. less tears now, trying to staunch the flow, but still cannot bring self to go into their rooms.

  6. Primal Sneeze Says:

    Our maiden school run involved a round trip of 1,300 klms and meant 22 hours on the road.

    There are Drummy-Mummies* in my village who take out their SUVs to drive their kids to the school 130metres away. And then complain about the lack of parking. My suggestion that they park in their own driveways is met with scowls.

    They have little to moan about.

    * Yummy-Mummies who shop, have coffee and shop in Ireland’s most expensive retail complex, Dundrum Town Centre.

  7. Sasha Says:

    Thoughts are with you – and starting crossing off those days till next visit!

  8. Rob Says:

    Great to have you back on line. Love the pics. Good luck with the teaching – looking forward to reading all about how it goes. Older siblings will soon settle into school and am sure will enjoy seeing and making friends again.

  9. apprentice Says:

    What a journey andd what a wrench. They look lovely happy kids. I hope they have access to the net and you can all keep in touch virtually.

    Good luck with goat, hope it doesn’t eat the hens.

  10. reluctantmemsahib Says:

    primal sneeze: hilarious – love the drummy mummies. I have always driven a 4×4 here: when I first came and lived in the capital city, Dar, it was necessary not because we had to drive miles but because potholes were appalling you needed the clearance. it was said that if you saw a pair of eyes on the road at night, take care, don’t assume it was a rabbit: it could be a giraffe standing in a pothole.

    Thank you Sasha – we will rip off another of SallyWorm’s segments tonight. And Hat has a calendar so we can cross off the days there too, all in the hope time goes faster.

    Thanks Rob. And you’re right. About the big ones. First day at school for Hat and I was great. We learned about Seneca, Attila and Priscus! And I tried not to be befuddled by tens and units.

    Apprentice – yes, the wrench awful, journey paled by comparison. They are lovely kids. And I miss those smiles and their noise. House too quiet …

  11. Iota Says:

    Just a thought. Does Hat have a blog? That would be educational (and you could relax on the days when you don’t do as much school stuff as you intended, safe in the knowledge that the blog-writing was an English/geography/history lesson in itself). Or perhaps she could do a guest entry or two on yours?

  12. reluctantmemsahib Says:

    she does, Iota, have a blog. but she’s not very disciplined about writing on it. she is full of good intentions but then gets distracted. I shall have to help her and perhaps if we pretty up the pages, she’ll be keener? or if she took her own pictures. She gets immersed in other projects: today she is building an old fashioned chariot; i like to think she has been inspired by history lesson. Alas I discover it’s merely another cat tormenting tool; she wants the cat to ride in it and needless to say, cat not thrilled at idea.

  13. floor jack Says:

    I have to say, I can not agree with you in 100%, but that’s just my IMHO, which indeed could be very wrong.
    p.s. You have a very good template for your blog. Where did you find it?

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