The Gulf War and Us

We had been evacuated from Kuwait during the gulf war, and were staying with my Mum and Dad whilst they moved house. This was the week I will never forget, my gorgeous angels aged 2 1/2 decided to become the devils from hell!

It started off with a momentary lapse in my concentration and an eerieness of silence in the house. I went calmly up stairs calling to them to get a reaction to find……….. Johnson’s lavender baby lotion (supposedly this has a calming affect) plastered over each other, their beds and all over their toys. Yes they smelt gorgeous, ahh I hear you say but worse was to come. They came downstairs while myself and my mother cleaned up the mess for Abbie to come up and tell me it was snowing in the living room. Tom had decided to stand on the chair and empty Ariel washing powder all over the lounge floor.

The next day things could only get better.. only they didn’t. My darling children decided to throw all my Mums collection of new cards she had collected (for anniversary and birthday) into the fireplace. They weren’t destroyed but she would have to explain the soot marks when she sent them.

Day 3 of the week from hell began with me walking in to their bedroom, half an hour before my husband was leaving to return to Kuwait. The sight had to be seen to be believed. They had discovered a large pot of Sudacrem and had smeared its contents everywhere – into  Mum’s new bedroom carpet, over the windows so I couldn’t even see out of them, over toys, furniture, you name it, it was covered. They had also covered themselves in the process. I went numb.

“Mummy are you going to cry? ”  said Abbie, as I slid down the wall to the floor.  I sat on the floor and balled my eyes out for a good ten minutes.

The following day was not much better – I went in and they had totally removed the frieze from their bedroom wall.

To top the week, they excelled. We had decided to keep them occupied and I had been out and bought a jungle gym for my parent’s garden. They would be outside getting fresh air, well away from any disaster areas.  As we were assembling the gym, Abbie came to me in a slight panic.

“Tom is throwing things away in Mamas fire”, she gasped, adding  “I told him no do it”.  I ran in, a sick feeling stirring in my stomach. What was he up to now was all I could think of, as I did the fastest 100 meters in history.

I froze when I saw him.  He was throwing my Mum’s Lladro collection piece by piece into the fireplace. I could see him holding her most precious piece, an absolutely irreplaceable treasure. Then everything went into slow motion.  All I could do was stare with open-mouthed disbelief as he threw it into the fireplace with the others.

Thank goodness they were all wrapped up in bubble wrap ready to pack. My sister and I painstakingly undid each piece and checked them thoroughly, all you could hear was a sigh of relief after every piece was unwrapped and re-wrapped. Not one broken my luck had changed!!

It may not surprise you to hear that my parents have decided to emigrate to calmer climates – and one day they may even let us visit!


Emma Hitchcock

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