“We’ve run out of bananas,” my husband gasps one morning as he makes the porridge.
This is a crisis. It’s like the Ritz running out of tea, or McDonald’s running out of Big Macs.
I suggest we take a family trip to the supermarket. It’s a good way to kill a couple of hours, and we can feed the kids on the way round, throwing bread at them while we argue about whether it is necessary to heat up the oven before putting food in it.
We swing into a Parent and Child space and start unpacking the kids.
I bend over, struggling to get Mayhem out because his jumper has caught on a stick, which Milk has wedged between the car seats.
“That’s my sticky bridge!” Milk yells as I yank at Mayhem. “Don’t break my sticky bridge!”
“It’s fine I won’t break it,” I say, just as the stick snaps, and Mayhem tumbles out of the car.
Milk is inconsolable. “Mummy said my sticky bridge wouldn’t break, but it did break,” he wails as my husband picks him up to go and find a trolley.
While Mayhem and I wait by the car, a black BMW roars into the space next to us, and a man gets out and walks briskly towards the shop.
He doesn’t have any kids.
“Hey that space is for people with kids!” I call after him.
He half turns, shrugs and continues.
I am not having it. I wave my arms frantically at my husband, who is spinning Milk around in the trolley, shouting “Bananas! Bananas!”
I yell across the car park. “He doesn’t have kids!”
My husband is momentarily confused but stops shouting about bananas and spins Milk once more to block the man’s path.
I can see him saying something to the man, and then I can see the man saying something to my husband. Then the man side steps my husband and continues on his way to the shop.
“Dickhead!” My husband shouts after him.
I beckon him over.
“He said he wouldn’t park in a Disabled space, but it’s our choice to have kids and he doesn’t believe in Parent and Child spaces.”
“What does he mean he doesn’t believe in them? They exist.”
“What’s a Dickhead mummy?” says Milk.
I wink at my husband. “It’s that man’s name,” I say.
I rummage around in the nappy bag and after poking my fingers into a few bits of old food and a dirty nappy, I pull out a small pot of cream. It’s the thick white, waterproof, barrier cream we smother over Mayhem’s bum, to stop it getting sore when we forget to change his nappy for an entire day.
My husband’s eyes widen and he nods in understanding.
“Get back in the car boys, we need a quick getaway.”
We stuff the children back into their car seats, and I hurriedly write Dickhead across the BMW windows.
A lady washing cars watches me silently with a smile; her sponge dripping bubbles on her shoes.
“He’s coming!” my husband almost squeals, and I have a second to admire my work before jumping into my seat.
“Go! Go!” I shout.
We try to reverse, but there is an old lady standing behind us having trouble with her trolley wheel.
“He’s coming! He’s coming!” scream Milk and Mayhem, kicking their feet in glee.
I can see the man making his way through the car park. He has a bunch of flowers in his hand.
“He’s probably going to see his mum or a poorly friend. He’s probably quite a nice man.” I say, instantly regretting what I have done.
“He was not a nice man,” my husband says quietly as he looks in the rear-view mirror, and I can see him considering whether to reverse over the old lady.
“What if you left your finger prints on the car?” my husband whispers.
“I used the sticky bridge,” I say proudly.
We start reversing just as the man approaches his car. His face changes from smug BMW driver, to shocked smug BMW driver.
We swing out of our space like a getaway car in a movie, except we are driving a Volvo with two kids in the back, and my husband has to let the old lady with the wonky shopping trolley cross in front of us, before we can move forward.
BMW man looks round furiously for a culprit, but he can’t work out who to blame so he hits his car with the flowers.
We all shout “Bananas! Bananas!” as we speed away.