Bemusingly, this post is nothing to do with toilet training. I know, I know, I’m letting you down. We skyped the spud’s Aunt and Uncle in Canada the other day and halfway through the call he displayed his naked bottom and we had to admit that he was running around pantless in hopes of a potty wee. In fact, we went much further than that. Given the time difference I suspect we ruined their breakfast but this is of no import to us, we’d already eaten and are smugly used to the odd dirty potty. In fact, potty training is pretty much all there is to talk about in our house these days. Poor little bean, the workings of his innermost plumbing are public enough without me rabbiting on about it to all and sundry (apologies here to anyone who has dared visit us in the last month).
No, there are more important things on the agenda today. This is, in fact, all about our current, massive dilemma.
The spud, as some of you may know, is currently in a wonderful Montessori nursery. He loves it. He’s happy. He’s talking and counting and using the toilet and singing and tidying up and using a handkerchief and saying ‘Miss Bharti, FUN’ all the way home about his key worker. Frankly, we love it too. Rather a lot. However, this garden of delight is in Streatham, which is, on a good day an 8 minute drive and on a bad, 20 minutes. Each way. In rush hour. Twice a day. This means [gets out calculator] between 30 and 80 minutes in the car every day just to get him there and back.
He has, since birth, been on the waiting list of our local, non-Montessori nursery. It has a long waiting list because it’s a particularly good nursery and all the spud’s bestest friends are either already there or on the waiting list. He knows it because his childminder used to take him there twice a week, because she is part of their affinity programme which is the entire reason we chose her in the first place. Finally, it is a five minute walk from our front door. This week they rang us to say that he’s been offered a place starting in January.
With the exception of one neighbour who has a PHD in anthropology and won’t let her child watch TV (so, depending on how I feel her opinion is either the most valuable of everyone's or the ranting of a mad person) everyone thinks we are bonkers to even consider turning it down – I mean, it’s the best nursery for miles. And all his friends will be there. Or have I said that already?
We have, on balance, decided to go ahead, although we haven’t told Montessori yet. I may possibly cry during the meeting because I wanted him in Montessori so badly. He’s doing so well, you see. He loves it. They have French lessons, for crying out loud.
Anyway, the deciding factor is the distance. Yes, it will be a matter of seconds for us to dash out the door and fetch him from the local nursery. Yes, we will be saving gallons of petrol and carbon emissions and ultimately the planet.
The best thing however is that the spud will no longer be party to my road rage.
Quite a lot of the journey to Montessori involves complex little neighbourhood intersections where everyone just kind of gets in each other’s way and, ultimately, tempers are raised. I, unfortunately, am absolutely useless at curbing my tongue but it wasn’t until someone honked at us yesterday and the spud yelled ‘BUTTER’ at him that I realised that things have gone Too Far.
Yes yes yes. I know. We’re signing him up for the local. I’ll get my coat.