Today I have solved a myth, a riddle, a puzzlement if you will that has been niggling at me for ages. There is nothing quite like the feeling of actually getting to the bottom of something (especially if that something is called Mr. G Clooney) and sighing a satisfied aha! in your face sister, or some such hip and happening remark. I am hip aren't I? Anyway, today I had my moment.
My friend Kate and I had decided to take the children to feed the ducks, Kate is a typical Mum-about-town, all 4x4, gym membership and Boden, and before you ask I am not jealous one tiny bit, oh no, I swear. I mean 4x4's are terrible for the environment, if God had meant us to exercise in an air conditioned studio she would have made them free and Boden? OK I'd quite like the flowery boot cut thingys, and I do have visions of Isla being one of those achingly cool models, but I'm afraid the gene pool I have supplied her with will make it nigh on impossible. So no, I am not envious of Kate and her Mum-about-town status.
Anyway, this is the riddle: every time we go to the park to feed the ducks Kate's children whip out bags of fresh (yes, fresh) granary bread. The sort you get from those specialist shops in a paper bag, the sort where the shop also home makes the Chelsea buns and remembers to accidentally slip one in with the bread to eat on the way home. I didn't think much of it at first, being my only Mum-about-town friend I just assumed that this is what they fed the ducks. Indeed a daily boost of B vitamins would go a long way to ensuring a healthy duck population. How community minded. But last week we went to Kate's house for tea rather than feed the ducks, who wouldn't have been there anyway since the rumour of Noah building a Modern Interpretation of the Ark to escape the rain and flooding meant all the local animals have been queuing for days. Our dog even camped out, but came home when his sleeping bag flooded. It won't do them any good though as apparently the Modern New Interpretation involves lots of holes through the hull representing (I'm told by the dog) the disintegration of society, so not much chance of floating off towards an olive tree (we have two in the back garden for them to aim for, though no dove, unless they want to borrow Jack's hand puppet one).
Anyway, having tea at Kate's I noticed one tiny thing; she served white bread. I looked around the kitchen to see if it was just for the children and that she kept a lovely fresh granary for her and her Husband but no. Why? Where was it? Cue music for Scooby Do and the arrival of the Mystery Machine. Oh yes, I was about to become one of those Pesky Kids. I spent most of the afternoon trying to find reasons to look in cupboards, Kate began to think I may have had some mental impairment or at least a brain as leaky as (New Modern Interpretation) Noah's ark, as for the eighth time I offered to make the tea and proceeded to open five different cupboards before locating the cups. But it paid off, unless she kept the bread in the cloak room there was no granary loaf to be seen. No granary loaf at all. Right, something strange is going on and I have to get to the bottom of it (or perhaps I need a part time job to give my brain something else to do).
So today we met at the park, and there it was; the brown paper bag filled with fresh granary bread. Why? It turns out that Kate doesn't like to feed white bread to the ducks in case Other Mums-about-town think she eats it at home, or worse feeds it to the children. She does though, the family get through two loaves of thin white sliced every week. They don't eat the crusts either so she puts them in the middle of the compost bin so that the bin men don't see them and think that she eats white bread and is very unhealthy and feeds her children unhealthy things too. So the granary loaf is bought fresh from the bakers before going to the park and dolled out to the children much in the manner of left over bread. She recycles the brown bag though, she told me solemnly. She uses it to hide the Nesquick packet in the recycling bin.