Honestly, people don't make it easy, do they?
Today, as the day was kind of busy, one way or another, I thought I'd try the single-shot tactic again.
My mum had been down to the south coast for a few days to stay with a friend, and I'd arranged to meet up at Gordano Services on the M5 south of Bristol. When I was a few minutes away, my phone rang.
The phone was clasped in a holder on the dashboard, so I couldn't easily pick up. It was raining heavily, windy, and dark. I was in the fast lane of the motorway focussing on picking my way through the glare of myriad lights in the darkness, so I just swiped to answer and hit speakerphone.
Of course, I then couldn't hear anything really, as we both repeated hello loudly at each other a few times. I'm not even sure whether it was Carol or mum that I was talking to. As far as I could tell, they were there already, and would wait for me in the cafe.
Now, I'm trying to avoid posed shots for my blog, so I cunningly hatched a plot to sneak up and take a snap before they'd really realised I was there.
Within minutes I arrived, and fired up my camera app as I walked into the Services building. A quick walk once around the facility failed to locate them, so I went all the way round again, checking more closely this time.
I called the number they'd called me from just minutes earlier.
My mind began to churn, analysing the options, calculating the odds (and hoping I hadn't completely misunderstood and was supposed to be meeting them in Seaton), when the phone immediately rang back.
It's funny how many different and complex trains of thought your mind can make in a second or two...
Anyway it turned out they were still in the car in the car park, as Carol was trying to teach my 77 year old mum how to use email on her phone. You have to admire the optimism, if not the pragmatism...
I went outside, reenabled my camera, and raised it as they approached, trying to catch them unawares...
As soon as they realised I was using my camera, they rushed to pose. I say they, it was Carol with the lightning reflexes, I'm not sure my mum was even aware I took a photo!
I showed her the picture when I dropped her off at home in Coventry, and she said, "Oh, that'll do, two mad ladies!".
So there you are, two mad ladies.
Sometimes I think Mad Ladies is the story of my life...my mum has always been a bit mad, and Carol (surrogate sister, of sorts) certainly is. When I tell you that my sister, Debs, was known to have dressed entirely in orange, out of choice (and with no known affiliation with Hare Krishna), then you will begin to see an emerging theme.
Maybe mad is a little harsh...let's say weird, perhaps, or eccentric.
Don't get me wrong, these are all admirable attributes...infinitely more interesting than normal, or average, or conventional. Bleurgh....
I'm secretly hoping that my daughter Kim will turn out to be similarly weird and/or eccentric...she's got the genes for it, certainly.
I've every faith in her, I think she's got what it takes to pull it off convincingly - and authenticity is a key characteristic of the most interesting weird people...
Anyway, the signs are pretty good so far...so come on Pin Snot, make me proud - you can do it!*
* You always do...