Friday, 5 August 2011

Golf, Granddad, and the Spicegirls

Recently I finished another book, and when I was sending off portfolios to universities, this was an extract from that book that I sent off.

This morning, I made the dreadful mistake of getting up at the crack of dawn and going for a jog with Mum. It was the start of my “get fit for summer” regime. However, like all of my ridiculous ideas, I only plan on doing it the once. I swear Mum is on steroids. She powered on ahead, leaving me coughing and spluttering behind. All the joggers seemed to be in competition with each other as well. There were hundreds of health conscious lunatics out this morning, and all of them were trying to run just that little bit faster than everybody else. Mum was the fastest though. I sat down on a bench and watched her overtake everybody else, I was so proud.

Afterwards, I managed to persuade Mum that I wasn’t the type of person for proper exercise. I explained to her that you didn’t have to run around to do sport, so then lucky old me got dragged along to play golf with Dad and Granddad. It wasn’t even crazy golf. It was proper golf, with birdies and everything!

Golf is the most boring “sport” on this planet. It was designed by boring people, for boring people...with stupid trousers, of which my Granddad owns at least thirty pairs. I had to result to hiding Granddad’s ball just to amuse myself. I lasted for six holes before Dad found out that I was cheating.

The only exciting thing about golf is the cool buggies that you get to drive around the course in. Granddad took ages to figure out how to drive it, and when he did, he drove it like a complete maniac! He managed to get us lost, despite the bright yellow signs telling you the exact way to go. We ended up missing out four of the holes because Granddad didn’t have a clue where he was going. He just pointed the buggy in the general direction of the next hole and forgot to steer. So inevitably, we took a shortcut through the forest instead of going around it. Thankfully, Dad took over the steering; otherwise our golf buggy would have been wrapped around a tree by now. We wouldn’t of been hurt though, because the buggy dies if you go over ten miles an hour.

After golf, Dad left me at Granddad’s house whilst he went DIY shopping. He said that he would only be half an hour, but I knew he would be longer. Dad gets lost in B&Q. Granddad told me that he was in urgent need of someone from the younger generation. Turns out he had brought himself an IPod in the bid to become more “hip”, as he put it. Unfortunately, he nearly put a hip out trying to get the box open. I had to show him how to open the plastic casing, and he was so amazed by that that he hovered behind my shoulder asking questions and commenting on modern technology. He wouldn’t stop talking though because he lives so far into the dark ages that everything is modern technology to him.

Granddad’s CD collection was abysmal. A bunch of war songs and rather surprisingly, the entire works of the Spicegirls. I wasn’t completely convinced that “Pack Up Your Troubles” would mix well in the same playlist as “Spice Up Your Life”. I’m especially concerned about Granddad’s vocabulary, because he told me the curry he had had last night was too “zig-a-zig-ah”. Well at least he has music to listen to whilst attempting his daily cross word.

As Dad was taking a lifetime, I took Granddad out in the afternoon to do his food shopping. I really wish that I hadn’t volunteered to do my doting granddaughter bit though. It was horrific. Granddad truly lived up to his reputation of being the world’s worst driver. He drove over a roundabout; stalled on the tram lines and then when we got to the car park he went in through the out and parked diagonally across three spaces. The store manager even had to come out and ask him to move the car. He did. He just parked exactly the same but across disabled spaces this time. I left a note on the windscreen saying that the driver of the car had dementia and that I was very sorry.

When we eventually made it into the store, Granddad was completely hopeless. I was too busy pretending that I didn’t know him to actually notice what was going in the trolley. I only realised just how awful Granddad is at shopping when we reached the till. He had got cream instead of milk, corn flour instead of sugar and even a kilogram of coal for a barbeque that he doesn’t even own. It took me an hour to do his shopping all over again, and even then he kept trying to sneak moisturiser into the trolley because he thought it was mayonnaise.

When I finally made it home, with a tin of beans as a thank you present from Granddad, my parents were painting the landing ceiling. I walked up the stairs and all I did was casually point out that Dad was in fact painting his half of the landing a completely different colour to Mum’s, and bedlam broke out. Mum just couldn’t appreciate how hilarious the situation was!

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