Our school had its annual fete yesterday and I, for all intents and purposes, missed it. I am surprised to find how much I mind this, especially given the reason I missed it was because I went away to Bendigo for a very enjoyable overnight stay with some super-lovely girls and a nice happy baby, and saw the 200 Years of The White Wedding Dress Exhibition which was ace. And actually, I did make a physical appearance at the fete, but it was quite belatedly, (at 4pm, closing down time), and like the conscientious first-born that I am, I took a quick lap around the grounds to locate and greet my family and then jumped straight onto the stall as per my roster, and spent the next couple of hours helping to pack up. Which means that this morning I feel like I had all the work and none of the fun of the fair. Crazy, I know. I made the choice to go away, I had a lovely time and I satisfied my own personal agenda of community participation by also fulfilling my school duty. It's just now I wish I'd had time to chat with friends, watch Cherub and his bestie have a ball in the cardboard maze, witness Climber being all grown-up and responsible as he took his rostered shifts alongside his other Grade 5/6 peers working the Mystery Box Stall, admire Fixit's cooking skills as he barbecued onions for the Grade 2 Sausage Sizzle stall plus maybe picked up some fete produce / bargains; or had a longer more chilled out stay away with my Bendigo posse, without the rush and panic to get there straight from Saturday morning tap class and the overhanging and nagging need to get back in time to do my duty at the other end; in other words, I wish I could have split myself in two for the weekend. Then I could have helped Fixit actually remember sunscreen and hats for everybody (luckily it was overcast) and the packed lunch for the fussbudget eater Cherub, but then I guess he'd never have expanded his eating repertoire to finally include pizza, quite the breakthrough!
I think my disappointment about this led me to grouch at Fixit and my sister that evening for not having noticed that we were about to run out of low-fat milk (essential for my cup of tea) and how I was sick of that sort of thing being always left up to me when they were both grown-ups too; when really I should have thanked Fixit for packing up the tap hall (also Nell; thank you Nell!) so I could fly out the door to catch the train to Bendigo on Saturday, doing a load of washing, (well putting it out, I've yet to see him do the whole bring in, fold and put away but you can't have everything, can you now?) defrosting the fridge, and taking care of the boys all day at the fete when actually that sort of community participation is not his cup of tea and he viewed it as a sacrifice because he'd far rather spend a Sunday tinkering in his shed. What's more he did all of this with good grace and without expectation of congratulatory fanfares or return favours, because he is a nice person. So thank you Mister Fixit, sorry I was grouchy. As for my sister, well she drove off today back to Canberra to deal with the implosion of her domestic situation, so I should not have grumped at her either, if only because she will be getting enough of that in the next few days/weeks/months. But given that she has just had an 11-day stay at my place for the 3rd time since July and that this stay she was cooked and cleaned for while she focused on her work, (it was like I had two husbands), I am sure she will understand that it was just one of those sisterly snaps that happen, and forgive me too.