When Little O met Big H
Octavia,the grandchild and youth policy was born on Bank Holiday Sunday. This meant the hospital where she popped out was understaffed with nearly dire consequences.
Year one it’s a thunderstorm and Arsenal are playing Fulham. Gareth the other granddad and I manage to wangle pink slips and get to see the game and be back in time to see the candle blown. Arsenal of course won and went onto have a credible season. Fulham went into free fall from which they have not recovered.
This year its down to Gareth’s delightful ranch for a slap up Sunday roast and the blowing of two candles. One of the functions of grandchildren is to slow time down. While repetition, habit, comfort zones and the rest mean we travel faster and faster to our destination the children’s slow march from amoeba to adulthood is a very different time line.
Octavia is well on course to becoming a fuctioning human being. At the moment she is a highly energised very intelligent parrot. Rushing a round trying out her 101 toys-big hits the baby food mixer and her very own doll with nappy to change! Oh yes we do believe in gender stereo typing!
She can obey a series of reasonably involved instructions has a vocabulary of maybe 200 words and a very efficient private language with her parents. I think at this point we can safely say there is a place for her at a British University (Seventh Generation)but maybe we should hold on the Nobel Prize.
A good day. The Clarks as befits landowners have big dogs. Being a big family they like the affable and easy to train handsome Labradors. Hackett is 13 and on his last legs. He sleeps a lot, his eyesight and hearing are weak, his haunches sag, every dog owner knows what comes next. Part of our pet’s function is to teach us about death and grieving.
Little O strokes Hackett and the dog still manfully comes on a walk but has long since stopped chasing the ball. The Clarks know that in few weeks Hackett will make his last trip to the vet.
So it was a absolutely priceless moment when Little O put the lead around Hackett’s neck and somehow gets all tangled up. The lab as always is patient and tolerant of the child. They walk a few paces. It wont happen again.