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Dear Universe,

I am writing to let you know that I am now fully aware of your views on day trips to France, and to apologise for making you go to such lengths to prove your point.

I recognise now that when my train runs out of electricity at Canterbury due to frozen tracks, I should perhaps take it as an early warning shot.

I must admit I thought it was a little harsh trapping my husband and son on the M25 for 10 hours in the snow. I don’t think anyone alive deserves to be faced with that length of wait to be allowed to soar majestically over the Dartford Crossing. I am especially peeved that after being trapped in traffic hell for that length of time, Keith was made to pay for the privilege. Most people would not consider that good value for money.

In view of the long wait - during which both my husband and I flattened our phone batteries with no way of charging them thereby causing me no end of nervous trauma - I’m not entirely sure it was also necessary to make my son spring to life on arrival at the hotel when we had a mere 4 hours of our night left. I love my son dearly, but yes I would gladly have shoved him head first into the snow when he insisted on playing for 3 of our 4 available hours and screeching for the small amount of time that remained.

I also considered it a personal slight to send us GALE FORCE WINDS on the ferry crossing knowing, as of course you do, that I get horrendously sea sick and that Keith had forgotten to pack my travel sickness tablets.

Giving you the benefit of the doubt, I will assume that my son screaming his head off for the WHOLE ENTIRE DAY was an unintended by product of his lack of sleep and not another ploy on your part, but regardless, it had the intended effect of us not being able to get any meaningful shopping done. So thank you for that valuable lesson in thrift.

Clearly, it was far better for Keith and I to eat lunch in shifts while the other tried to comfort our young son, as it would have been entirely inappropriate for us to sit down to enjoy lunch as a family as we had intended. Again a valuable lesson learned.

Oh and the looks on the faces of the supermarket workers when I asked for Calpol was a masterful touch. My status as Bad Mother (TM) has now slickly gone international which I personally think is a highlight of my year. As is the knowledge that French supermarkets don’t condone the wholesale drugging of children.

Be assured that in future I will greet any excited appeals from my husband have a “fun day” Christmas shopping in France with scorn and possible physical abuse and once again, I thank you for this valuable life lesson.

Love and kisses


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