Eldest daughter had an interview.
Being the country types that we are nowadays, going up to London is a big thing for us. Bit of a treat really.
We got a coffee before we got on the train. Found ourselves a nice set of seats with a table, and got ourselves sitting comfortably, as you do.
It was fortunate that I had had a major crisis of confidence, prior to setting out, about my size and had therefore settled for "slimming" (don't be perusaded otherwise by Trinny and Susannah) black, because as eldest daughter arranged her work on the table, the first cup of coffee went over and landed in my skirt. I say "in", because that is what it was like. A massive black receptacle for a seemingly rather large cup of coffee. Lovely. It didn't show, and miraculously even the pink scarf and maroon coloured jacket (concessionary colour allowance to show not in mourning) missed the coffee completely. I was just a bit wet, and smelt slightly unpleasant. Coffee isn't good secondhand.
I had just mopped it up as best as I could when the train jolted and Eldest (being a very slim teenager) got some coffee down her white shirt. Thankfully, she had packed a spare (white) shirt in her bag, not because she was anticipating spilling coffee, but just in case she changed her mind about what to wear, which of course being a teenager, she frequently does and can.
And then the train jolted again and this time just caught my maroon jacket a little..... Thankfully again I had taken off the scarf to avoid it sitting in puddle of coffee and as such was able to replace it later to cover spillage on jacket.
So, we arrived in London, stinking of second hand coffee. Given that we had come up from Gloucestershire, and I am naturally a very late person for everything, when I have to do something important I always overcompensate for time. We practically ran to the tube, both thinking that we had just over 40 minutes to get to Oxford Circus from Paddington. It wasn't until we arrived at Oxford Circus that we realised that we had left Paddington an hour and forty minutes before the interview.
Eldest daughter was delighted because we visited the BIG Topshop at OC, had some great girly time trying on some clothes, got an extortionately expensive but I did have to (grudgingly) admit, very nice, gingerbread coffee from Starbucks all before the interview. Then afterwards we had a look at the Christmas decorations (was amused to see that they weren't very different to those they used 20 years ago) and spent far too much money on some Christmas presents from Hamleys. Maybe I thought that I was going to be late for Christmas this year so had to do some shopping early. Something like that.
We'd had a really great day, despite the vague coffee aroma that we carried with us wherever we went. And, as we went down the escalator at Oxford Circus, it didn't occur to me that vast black coffee smelling skirt might be a potential health hazzard, until I was walking off the bottom of the stairway and could go no further. I realised when I seemed to be staying static and going a little bit backwards, that I was a bit caught up and going the wrong way towards the stairs. Fast. A kind passerby pressed the emergency button, and nearly sent hundreds of people flying off the staircase as it drew to a sharp stop. He then pulled out what was left of my skirt for me. I was very grateful, and very apologetic. He did look at me as if really I was just a little bit VERY STUPID and as if it was definitely MY fault, which realistically it probably was. Perhaps after all there is a benefit to wearing a belt in the place of a skirt, as does my daughter and her friends, because then there is no danger of being sucked up in an escalator via a big black coffee smelling skirt.
And of course, had I worn a shorter version of said garment I wouldn't have then had to make my way from Oxford Circus to Paddington with a smelly skirt with a very large rip at the bottom. Perhaps I should have sat down and put out a hat. I may have raised my train fare.
All I need now I thought is to bump into someone that I haven't seen for ten years. We turned the corner and there .........................
No not really, but it would have been great for the blog.
Instead I just brazenly walked around Paddington for 3/4 hour (early again!) waiting for the train, and if anyone did notice a slightly strange coffee smelling woman with ripped skirt and very glamorous daughter waiting for the Gloucester train yesterday, thank you so much for not staring or commenting.
8 months ago