It’s been a virtual, almost surreal twelve hours while my wife and I have been with our young grandchildren. They woke up with the expectation of attending a Teddy Bears' Picnic at their Tuesday playgroup. On the way to the Salvation Army building where the feast was to take place they each pushed their teddies in miniature four wheel buggies, the sort that foldaway.
At first they were treated to outside games on the local green along with other small children. The most popular game by far was The Parachute, which consisted of a multi patterned circular piece of fabric that the youngsters held by the rim. In the middle of the ‘parachute’ there was a circular hole large enough for a child to stand in. Small colourful balls were thrown onto the material which was vigorously raised and lowered until all the balls either disappeared through the hole or fell off the edge. One of the aims of the game was to get the balls into the air, but tiny arms were not able to do it. By the commands of the leader certain boys or girls ran under the material and took up stations on the opposite side. Finally, they all sat under the parachute and supported its rim on their shoulders to form a tent. There was much laughter until the command was given for silence, and not a word was uttered before permission was given for them to speak again.
The next treat was a hunt for little Easter eggs that had been hidden in the gardens, and there were plenty for all. With cheeks glowing because of the exercise and fresh air the youngsters were invited into the main hall where their teddy bears were to have the awaited picnic. Hungry mouths rapidly consumed cookies, sandwiches and biscuits. Then it was time for sitting at table and making bunny masks from paper plates and pre-cut paper ears.
Away from the party there was more food at the ASDA restaurant. Our boys were exceptionally well behaved, but not very hungry, as chocolate eggs, cookies and sandwiches already lined their stomachs.
Back at home, they were eager for more games and to watch a DVD of Toy Story with the leading characters Woody and Buzz Lightyear. After the film, the lounge became a playroom full of toys. Buzz and Woody fell asleep on the sofa while the children tried their hand at making shapes with play sand in the kitchen; thereafter, there was more play and more to eat; then it was in the garden for a session of digging and planting with their Nanny. Daddy arrived home, and at last they had a bath and were snugly dressed in woollen pyjamas. Hugs, kisses and goodbyes ended the day.
Buzz and Woody
The surreal had gone. My mechanic knocked on the door and presented me with my car which he had worked on all day to eliminated noises, get a back seatbelt working, do a MOT and service the vehicle. My eyes were fully opened when I saw the bill, and I was truly jolted from my dream.