October 2014 34


Just a few more gaps to fill.

I am using some bits from ‘Selected Cautionary Verses’ by Hilaire Belloc, which I love.

This edition was published by Penguin in 1968, and was totally ruined by a leak in our window (along with my beloved ‘Flat Stanley’). It was already in a pretty rough state, even before the months of rain.

The first one is taken from a poem called ‘The Garden Party’, and the second from ‘The Lion’.

The rich arrived in pairs, And also in Rolls Royces; They talked of their affairs, In loud and strident voices.

And indeed they do…

The Lion, the Lion. he dwells in the waste, He has a big head and a very small waist; But his shoulders are stark, and his jaws they are grim, And a good little child will not play with him.




October 2014 31


Friday, 17th October

Carol, on the BBC weather, was talking today about Britain In Bloom.

The flowers growing around my napkin, either come from Julia’s colouring book, or from ‘Maisy’ by the brilliant Lucy Cousins (published by Walker Books). My children did not do that scribbling, by the way.



October 2014 29


Wednesday, 29th October

My daughter’s tooth came out today. She now has three baby teeth left. She turns twelve in November.

She said “Do you think the tooth fairy gives money to people who don’t believe?”

“Probably not,” I say.

She smiles and starts to write her letter.

Every time a tooth falls out, she writes a letter to the tooth fairy. What is your name? What do you do with my teeth? How big are you? That sort of thing. Her dad always replies with the most ridiculous answers. When I finally get this house sorted out, and I find everything, I will add these letters to this post.

My son had a full set of adult teeth at the age of nine. The dentist said this is highly irregular. He was pretty hairy and his voice had broken before he left primary school, and he is an August baby, so the youngest in the year.

When he was about six, he found an envelope with his name on it. It was foolishly on top of his ‘Thomas The Tank Engine’ videos. He opened it, because, “It was addressed to me.” Inside was a tooth he had recently lost. So he knew at an early age about the Tooth Fairy, and successfully kept his promise not to spoil it for others.

October 2014 28


Saturday, 25th October

I heard on the radio today that John Holt died earlier this week.

I remember him best for the 1983 album ‘Police in Helicopter’.

The police gave a talk to my daughter’s year at school yesterday. The words in blue come from a leaflet she brought home with her. The helicopter is from Julia’s colouring book.


October 2014 27


Friday, 24th October

The Queen tweeted a tweet today. She was in the Science Museum.

The message, which went out at 11:35am to 724,000 followers of the @BritishMonarchy account, read: “It is a pleasure to open the Information Age exhibition today at the @ScienceMuseum and I hope people will enjoy visiting. Elizabeth R.”