Yesterday morning I packed a bag ready to head to a park as a fun way to spend the morning. Carrying my son, I found my phone in one room and a jumper for him in another, picked up my handbag, patted my pocket to check I had the keys, and then walked out the front door. It was as I heard the lock click shut behind me that I realised I’d grabbed the wrong bag and what I thought were keys in my pocket were actually cashews. I had no keys. No wallet. No snacks, no nappies, no tissues. The only other person who could now get into our apartment was my husband, who was only a third of the way through his 3-hour Greek exam, not to mention a very long walk away. I suddenly needed to wee.
My mum was patient during my hysterical call, as usual, and assured me she’d come for us as soon as she could. My son wasn’t too concerned with the wait; playing downstairs is one of our regular pastimes, although usually he’s accompanied by a mother who points out birds and jumps from behind the letterboxes to make him laugh, rather than one who repeatedly bursts into tears while cursing her stupidity.
I found after being rescued that the handbag I’d grabbed wasn’t completely empty: it contained a receipt and the stub of a green oil pastel. It was nice to know I’d have had the stationery to leave some last words if it had come to that, although at the time I wasn’t feeling at all creative beyond turning my pashmina into the world’s biggest hankie for my snotty son.
My very wise little brother helpfully told me, “You need to remember your keys!”