Sunday, 21 March 2010
There is something quite stressful about taking your parents to Starbucks. Allow me to explain. For several weeks now, myself & My Son have been back from Scandinavia, and as we are back in the normal swing of things, that includes My Son's usual Saturday guitar class.
This Saturday was different. He was taking part in a concert, along with hundreds of other children, playing different instruments. We dropped him off for rehearsals at the venue beforehand, and strolled along to the nearest coffee shop, which just happened to be a Starbucks. Actually, that the nearest coffee shop was going to be a Starbucks was pretty much a certainty, as we were in a very upmarket part of town.
So in we go. My mother, being in the biggest chain of coffee shops in the world....tells me to order her a cup of tea. Ok, fine, I do that, even if I'm cringing ever so slightly as I do so. Luckily, they have a stock of teabags ready for such occasions as Mad Mothers coming in.
Then we sit down. I can't really describe how awkward my parents look, sitting on a couple of stools at the window bench, which is usually full of 30-something Tarquins in stripy scarves, tapping away on laptops. But they are the only seats free, because Pippa & Bunny & their assortment of all-terrain, 3-wheeler Bugaboo strollers are already hogging the comfy chairs (along with, I should add, their assorted offspring, all clad in stripy jumpers & coloured corduroy jeans, and bearing pretentious names like Ruaraidh & Clement).
As I bring the tray of two coffees & one tea over (plus 3 gorgeous cocoa-y biscuits with a rich chocolate filling in them as a treat for us all), I tell my mother that the milk & sugar and all the little fiddly bits are at the little counter just behind us. So up she gets, and there cometh the second faux pas, folks-she brings the milk over to our seats & "plays mother", while behind us stand a line of folks looking daggers at her for stealing the milk while they all have to stand there like fools.
Then come the biscuits-the lovely cocoa-y biscuits were not to be, sadly. My mother took one look, and decided it would go into her handbag to be given to My Son. I don't know whether it was the fact that she is trying to lose some weight, or whether she was terrified at the thought of eating a biscuit which was 75p, & simply couldn't justify it-so she didn't. Grr.
My father did the same-all the while complaining at "what a rip-0ff these places are".
Anyway, trauma over, I and my mother went to the nearest card shop to get a "well-done" card for My Son, in anticipation of a successful concert, and then we proceeded to the concert hall.
I am happy to report that My Son was a star, and did us all proud!! But please God.....next time he plays a concert....let it be near a McDonalds....or it isn't going to be good for my blood pressure.