We are off to a 90th birthday party in a few weeks time. We are all really looking forward to it. Not just because we get to celebrate Rob’s grandad’s birthday but also because it’s a rare opportunity for the entire Lewis clan to get together.
But the thing is, the party is just outside London and I have never driven that far before. I’m quite a nervous driver in many ways. I do love driving but I’m not fond of driving on roads I don’t know. I try to avoid driving in the city as much as possible and I haven’t yet ventured on a motorway either (not that we have any of those in Norfolk!)
I especially don’t like driving to new areas in autumn and winter – even more so if I have the kids in the car. I realise just how neurotic I must sound if you are reading this – and I probably am to a certain extent, but it’s just the way I am.
But my neurosis is probably also a blessing in disguise. You see, before I became a mum I was possibly one of the most relaxed people going. Someone once said that I was so laid back that I practically horizontal. I really didn’t have much of care in the world.
But parenthood… wow, that gives you a short sharp shock to the brain, doesn’t it! Suddenly you are in charge of this small, screaming bundle of arms and legs and you realise that it’s YOUR responsibility to keep it safe from harm. And suddenly, in your eyes, EVERYTHING is a danger. Everything should come with a health and safety warning. In fact, you start thinking that baby gro’s should be made of bubble wrap or some other similarly cushioned material.
And the first time you take baby out in the car you are hyper-aware of everything and everyone. I remember the first time I drove in the snow with my son. We were only driving down to the shop but I think I must have done every single pre-travel safety check possible, and a few extra thrown in for good measure.
Now, whenever we are heading off on a long journey, or if I know the weather is going to turn for the worse I always make sure I check the car over before departing. I make sure I have enough screen cleaner, that the oil is topped up, and that the air pressure in the tyres is fine and tyre tread isn’t too low. If the tread is too low then I’ll get a new tyre locally or, if I can’t do that, have a service like tyreplus.co.uk come to me to fit one.
Even though I am a bit nervous about our trip down to Hertfordshire in a few weeks, I know that the car will be safe and ready for the journey ahead. Now I just have to think of ways to entertain the kids on the long journey – if you have any top tips and tricks then please let me know!
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