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This is why my blogging has been so slap dash lately.

First off I want to make it very clear that I DO love my Dad, and I am pretty sure that he does what he does with the best of intentions. It's just a shame that his best intenetions only seem like the best to him... regardless of the reality round him.

A few months back now he asked if it was ok if he and Fay came to stay with me and Yorkie for a couple of days in the New Year. I thought a couple of days would be no real hassle, and didn't think he'd actually come over anyway (he talks randomly about doing things he never does quite a lot these days), so I said it would probably be fine, so long as he understood that we'd be working. He said that was ok, because he and Fay would have to go off and do things of their own anyway, like see Fay's son Matt and his wife Joy, and visit some friends.

Later it became apparent that he would be coming back to the UK to bring his mum (my Nan) back home after a holiday with him and Fay in France, and it's a long way to come without stopping a couple of days.

Again - please notice - the use of the words 'a couple of days', which means '2'.

Imagine my SHOCK when 3 days before he arrives I get an email stating he would be staying with us from the 16th to the 23rd.

That's not a couple of days. That's a WEEK! Oh, and it's nothing to do with Nan, who had come home a WEEK BEFORE!

So I broke the news to Yorkie, who was anything but happy! He even considered changing his days at work so that he wouldn't have days off when they were here, but I promised to take them out for the day on his days off so he wouldn't have them forced on his for too much of the time.

I feel a little unfair saying 'them' actually, it's my Dad we're trying to have a rest from! Fay minds her own business.

The timing sucks too, as right now we have no hot water (we need a new hot water boiler urgently) and no washing machine (it broke before Christmas and we waited until the sales to buy a new one, and all the ones we can afford are now sold out. d'oh.) so it means our guests have to sleep on a futon in the spare room (we're not kitted out for over night visitors, I told Dad that ages go), wash in the sink with hot water from the kettle, and go to the laundrette to clean their clothes. Welcome to the POOR life!

So he arrived on the Tuesday night - late - and kept me up for ages telling me stuff he's already told me on the phone twice in the last week, ignoring my pleas to let me go to bed as I had work in the morning.

Wednesday wasn't too bad. I was as work in the morning, and the three of us went shopping in the afternoon (his fave pastime). I can cope fine with 24 hours of him.

Thursday we went to Ikea - and left poor Yorkie at home. He hates Ikea, and would rather not spend the day shopping with my dad. I have work for an hour and a quarter around 3pm to 5pm on a Thu (flexi-time, they close at 3pm and as long as it gets done before the end of Yorkie's day at work every thing's good) so morning and early afternoon out is OK.

BUT! Thursday was the day of the big storm (12 people killed, including a little 2 year old who was crushed by a falling wall). I suggested putting it off for another day as the news said 'don't go out unless you have to'. But Dad seemed to think we HAD to.

It took about 50 Min's to get there. And 5 HOURS TO GET BACK!

Dad did buy us a fold away dining table and some plastic chairs - he can't possibly eat off his knees like the plebs. The table is lovely though, and I am grateful. But it wasn't necessary. He just HAD to spend the money.

As it was SO late when we got back into Lancaster I knocked the idea of going to work well and truly on the head. I called the site and left a message explaining I'd been stuck out of town, the motorways were closed, and was it OK if I made the shift up on Friday instead. Luckily they were very understanding and were fine with the change of shift.

Dad, however, INSISTED on coming to work WITH ME! So on Friday I did my morning shift as usual, when home, had some lunch, hid on the PC doing some work (mainly because I'd done none all week and was losing money, but also to get away from Dad for a bit) and then the three off us set off to my site.... Late because dad wouldn't stop winding the poor kitten up.

Got to work late - dad had to 'help' only he can't (wont) follow instructions. Even simple ones like "spray the surface sparingly and wipe with a damp cloth". He saturated the surfaces, and used a dry cloth....

But he loved it SO MUCH that he decided we was coming to the Doc with me on Saturday! Anyway, with his dawdling, we were late leaving the site, therefore we were late picking Yorkie up from work, and he'd set off walking for home. In the pouring rain and still very very strong winds. He's mobile phone is buggered (and lost too now) so I couldn't get hold of him to find out if her was walking, on the bus, still at work, or what. So Dad started driving round looking for him, but driving at a snails pace, and trying to ask random strangers on the street if they had seen Yorkie. As if there was any point!

Still, we found him about a quarter of the way home, cold, wet and shivering. I bought him a new phone on Saturday!

Saturday morning, dad came with me to the Dock. Only I can't trust him to do any actual work because I'm using hazardous materials up there, and working on slippy surfaces. If dad does something wrong some one will get hurt or even killed, and I'll be the one to blame. So I made him sit still and watch. It's only a short shift, and once we were done he and Fay went off to Leeds to say Matt and Joy et al.

Dad REFUSED to spend even a SINGLE night at Matt and Joys, telling Fay he was here to see HIS daughter. According to him the didn't seem keen to out them up (shock horror - NEITHER ARE WE!) and Joy is a 'snob'. Dad says she was patronising towards him, and snobby because they have a bigger house than the semi Dad and Fay were living in prior to moving to France.

Really, Dad? Some being PATRONISING? Someone being SNOBBY over the size of PROPERTY? Really??? The only shock is that you are accusing someone ELSE of doing those things!

Although I have it from Fay that they WERE invited to stay, but Dad declined!

The stupidity of that (not staying with Matt and Joy) is that they live in Leeds, where Fays friends and family are that they were going to visit, and where my wedding dress is and were it needed to be paid for. So WHY O WHY did dad feel the need to drive over to Leeds on Saturday, and have dinner out with Matt and Joy, drive back to mine, just to drive BACK to Leeds the VERY NEXT DAY to pay for the wedding dress, and then drive back to mine again! It's about 2 and a half hours drive each way!

He really pissed me off when I heard him telling one of Fays friends that I have 'insisted' that he came over to England to see and pay for he wedding dress.

I did no such thing - and made a (childish but valid) point of saying so in front of said friend. He had no need to do any such thing! I'd sent him photographs of the dress - massive photos in ultra fine resolution - and there was no reason why he couldn't pay over the phone with his card, or send a cheque. Or even pay at all as the cost of the wedding is being split 50/50 and he's already covered the first half almost a year ago!

Monday I was at work again - and really dragged it out. didn't want to go back home! When I did get in I went right up to work on the PC until fay said she was ready for the two of us to go out- minus dad! I jumped at the chance and we spent the afternoon walking round town, nattering and having a nice healthy pub lunch (posh Mediterranean veggie panini for me, and a 'thing with stuff in' for Fay - which was a Yorkshire Pudding with Turkey and Cranberries, but in Lancashire that's considered foreign). We didn't go home until after picking Yorkie up from work...!

Tuesday they went home. Dad insisted that we went to town for lunch (not be be out done by me and Fay the day before) and we took up Yorkie's (amusing) suggestion of the Whale Tail Cafe. Now, don't get me wrong, we both really like this place although we haven't been for a long long time, but it's just NOT a place Dad would ever go: it's all veggie, fair trade, environmentally friendly, etc. To my dad, it's a black loving dyke pit full of hippies and labour supporters (although the first face I spotted in there was our local green Councillor....).

And then they got his order wrong, sending him Raspberry and Echinacea tea (which is what I'd ordered for me too) and a veggie chilli full of carrots (which he is allergic to, so I swapped him for my humus). He clearly didn't want to do, and was dragging his heals all round town until they ended up setting off for the airport 45 mins late.

Personally I feel happier, and more loving towards him, now that he is 1000 miles away again.

Like I said, it's not that I don't love him, because I do, he just winds me up the wrong way ALL THE TIME! He must have worked it out in the end, because he FINALLY suggested that next time (eep) he'll spend half the week with us, and half with Matt and Joy.



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