I like to think that I’m exceptionally well organised and run the Mr Banana Head business in a professional and effective way. Recently however, I experienced the perfect storm of bad luck, freaky / bizarre occurrences and a severe case of spatial awareness that would have brought most people to tears. Actually, what am I saying, I did have a little sob in the car afterwards. This day will forever be known as, “Oh my god, how much more can possibly go wrong in a day,” day.
It had all started so well, I woke up feeling refreshed and raring to go and had some quality time with the girls, making pancakes and watching Once Upon A Time on Netflix. I went to the car, got the keys out…..hold on, where are my keys? No seriously where are my keys? The answer was somewhere in the Banana Triangle, possibly never to be seen again.
Ok, now it was suddenly time to panic as it was getting to the stage where I’d be rushing to get there on time. There was only one thing for it, I’d need to take Mrs Banana Head’s (much smaller) car. That in itself would be ok if a tight squeeze apart from two things. Firstly, if you looked inside her car you’d think 73 people and animals had been crudely sacrificed it was so messy. Secondly her boot was absolutely crammed full with complete junk. A washing up bowl that was supposed to have been returned to Dunelm in 2013, leaflets advertising the 1987 Smash Hits Christmas Party, lots of socks, yoga mats, 3 inflatable guitars and lots more.
Ten minutes later I’m on my way stressing out to the max. The party was for about 15 grandchildren of various ages and was taking place in the Grandma’s bungalow. Well, in a gazebo in the garden. I arrive, trying to compose myself only to find no-ones in! Repeated ringing but still nothing. I then glance up to see an upstairs, this isn’t a bungalow. I call the Grandma only to discover that this is a ridiculously weird road that turns into another version of itself (or something equally bizarre) further down the road. I eventually arrive trying to remain calm but aware that I need to set up very quickly now.
I was told that I could use a plug socket in the bedroom down to the garden and the gazebo. Only problem was that it wouldn’t reach all the way due to the gazebo being tight against a wall and I couldn’t reach it. I then ended up hanging over the balcony balancing the plug socket on a hanger with two of the children trying to grab it from the ground with no luck. I then realised that I could simply run the plug to the edge and down and across. I appreciate this is all hard to picture, let’s just simplify it by saying that I was a complete idiot (with added serious spatial awareness issues).
The show starts and with my first line I get a massive laugh from a 4 year old boy. Great start I think but this joy soon turns to horror. He was the child that on paper sounds like a gift, laughing at everything you say and do. The reality is soooo different. I say, “Who’s here at the party?” He screams with laughter. I say, “Who knows a magic word?” He laughs so loudly you think your ears will explode. I literally open my mouth to speak and he laughs like a rabid hyena after drinking 8 cans of Red Bull and no sleep since February. Eventually after about 15 mins one of his older cousins told him to be quiet as no one could hear what I was saying. I will forever be grateful as how could I turn round to a child and say, “Please stop laughing / laugh quieter as your manic outbursts are putting me off and quite frankly freaking me out.”
The rest of the show went well and as we all finished by shouting out “Hip hip Bananas,” and I wished them a good rest of their lives I breathed a huge sigh of relief. The nightmare was over, time to relax. As I cleared away all the children stayed with me and we chatted away. A two year old boy walked over and I said, “Hi Rachel, how are you?” This was met with multiple cries of, “His name isn’t Rachel, it’s James.” A 7 year old girl then pipes up with, “My mum’s name is Rachel,” to which I reply with, “And how is the lovely Rachel?” The next words she uttered will haunt me forever. In a totally blasé way she says, “OH SHE DIED.”In my defence she did say my mum’s name is and not was. The whole garden instantly went eerily silent (just think of American Werewolf In London in the Slaughtered Lamb. No idea what I’m talking about, just see here from 3 mins 25 secs onwards.
In a complete panic and with no ability to think of an appropriate response I just mumbled, “No problem,” followed by “Who wants to listen to Kate Bush?” Obviously that was met with silence so I put on Hounds of Love and carried on clearing away. Ten minutes later I was in my car and sobbed silently most of the way home. There was a happy ending to this tale of woe as I found my keys that evening. I’m sure Honey Banana Head the Cockerpoo stole them but I can’t prove it and she isn’t talking. Until next time……………..