We've known it’s going to happen for a while, but we’ve been in denial. And no, I’m not talking about Littleboy 2 hitting the terrible twos (although, all the evidence suggests that he has).
Every week over the past few months the ominous signs have come closer, encroaching onto our neighbouring streets. There were diggers, men in fluorescent jackets with clipboards and white vans. Finally, sinister chalk marks appeared on our pavement and we knew the day of reckoning was upon us.
Yes, Thames Water are digging up our road.
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Now if you’d told me four years ago I’d be bothered about this, or indeed writing a blog about it, I would probably have laughed in your face. Back then, parking outside our house was not an issue as we hardly ever drove.
But today, this equals a huge disruption to our daily lives. The whole of our side of the street is now basically a trench; parking has been suspended and we can’t bring the car anywhere near the house. This makes the three day a week nursery run something of a challenge. Getting the two Littleboys in and out of the car along with their various bags, coats and the selected toys that have to come with us is tricky enough as it is, without the added fun of having to trek to the car along a narrow muddy corridor and negotiate crossing roads with them.
Our road is quite small, and naturally all the nearest parking spaces have been nabbed by people who never, ever have to move their cars, so finding a spot anywhere convenient is impossible. This situation is set to carry on for the next month – after which, the Men cheerfully informed me, they will dig up the other side of the road.
On the plus side, the gang of workmen employed to dig the trenches have provided some diversions. The Littleboys have spent many a happy hour staring out of the windows at the mechanical digger and love to say hello to the workmen and inspect the equipment (far more exciting than their own plastic tractor collection) as we go by.
Even I have had my entertainment. One morning, a jet of water shot up into the air about 20 feet high, directly outside our house. This was obviously not part of the plan. Two men were furiously scrabbling around in the muddy trench with their bare hands trying to put the lid back on the source of this fountain, and there was much shouting and swearing.
A little concerned that we were about to lose our water supply, I shot out there and enquired: “Er…everything OK?”
“Don’t you worry darling,” they said. “Thames Water are coming out to sort it.”
Well, that’s a relief then.