petite anglaise

August 29, 2005


Filed under: Tadpole rearing — petiteanglaiseparis @ 3:57 pm

A loud, repetitive sound, not unlike rapid machine gun fire, echoes around the almost empty plane, which is basking in the late afternoon sunlight on the tarmac of Leeds Bradford airport.

I hope to goodness that Tadpole won’t choose this precise moment to fill her nappy, as I won’t be able to remedy the situation until the plane is airborne, and the fasten seatbelt signs have been switched off. I am relieved that no-one seems to have noticed this little outburst, however.

Until, that is, Tadpole yells “Mummy! Did a prout!” at the top of her lungs, collapsing into a mirthful little mass of giggles.

Unfortunately, I fear I am the only person on the plane who heard that all important punctuation. Tadpole doesn’t do personal pronouns yet, which can give rise to a certain ambiguity.

Cheeks blazing, I reach for my magazine. Tadpole promptly grabs it, giving me her reading material in exchange. I sigh, and leaf through her brand new colouring book, while Tadpole pores over photos of British C-list celebs in Heat, seemingly fascinated. As she hasn’t had a nap today, and is therefore a volatile little element, I decide against challenging her.

Instead, I unveil my secret weapon. A little unwise, at this early stage in the journey, but needs must.

I pull a pair of gingerbread men out of my bag.

She may be old enough to have her own seat, wear her own seatbelt, and have her own drink and snacks from the air hostesses’ trolley, but she’s not yet old enough to eat a gingerbread man and read a magazine simultaneously.

Mummy: 1, Tadpole 0.

Only one and a half hours to go…


  1. Victory is sweet! :)

    Comment by Bob — August 29, 2005 @ 4:11 pm

  2. You win! This time.

    I’m still laughing…

    Comment by christina — August 29, 2005 @ 4:51 pm

  3. Hopefully the other passengers don’t know the meaning of ‘prout’, even if they were aware of the punctuation!

    Comment by Antipo Déesse — August 29, 2005 @ 4:57 pm

  4. So, is that really Tadpole in the picture? Probably not, but whoever she is, she is cute………..

    Comment by Dave of the Lake — August 29, 2005 @ 4:59 pm

  5. I, too, was wondering if that were your little tadpole in the picture? Again – whoever she is, she’s darling!

    Comment by Faye — August 29, 2005 @ 5:04 pm

  6. it is Tadpole. I don’t usually post pictures of real people, but you’d have a hard time recognising her without the gingerbread man, so what the heck…

    Comment by petite — August 29, 2005 @ 5:22 pm

  7. He seems to be enjoying his fate, too :-)

    Comment by Mathieu — August 29, 2005 @ 6:07 pm

  8. Your little girl is beautiful! I love the glint in her eye….

    Comment by birdy — August 29, 2005 @ 6:24 pm

  9. Tadpole is beautiful. I have 5 grandsons that I love to bits, but a grandaughter would have been nice. Not much chance now I fear. Have to content myself with misleading the boys with mini scrambles bikes and such like.

    Comment by Keith — August 29, 2005 @ 6:40 pm

  10. Well, what a cute little thing she is! She reminds me of my niece when she was that age. She also has a mischevious glint in her eyes as well!

    Comment by Dave of the Lake — August 29, 2005 @ 7:04 pm

  11. Oh, she’s just adorable. That gingerbread man looks pretty good, too!

    Hope the flight was uneventful. :)

    Comment by theinsider — August 29, 2005 @ 8:13 pm

  12. Tadpole is adorable! I love her mischevious look in this picture.

    Comment by Kathleen — August 29, 2005 @ 10:14 pm

  13. The worst I read about anything like this was in the Telegraph magazine’s shopping column. The mother was trying out Homebase having not been able to go back for a few years since potty-training her daughter.

    Said daughter was taken to Homebase, and Mummy was looking round, when suddenly daughter said “Mummy, I’ve been good!” – Mother turned round to see daughter sat on toilet in demonstration bathroom suite with a big grin on her face, nappy round ankles…

    Comment by Richard — August 30, 2005 @ 12:50 am

  14. WOW I usually hate babies but this one is … really beautiful, no other word. Congratulations ;-))

    Comment by Miss Pink — August 30, 2005 @ 3:41 am

  15. How about Sydney/Paris/New Orleans/Los angeles/Sydney with a 20 months’ old? 56 hours in the air.

    Then Sydney/Paris/Sydney 10 months later?

    Only 23 hours to go….

    Petite, I don’t want to show off there, but your one hour and a half is an absolute piece of cake!!

    Comment by Boris — August 30, 2005 @ 7:41 am

  16. Paris Sydney? I’m no masochist. I know my limits.

    Comment by petite — August 30, 2005 @ 10:12 am

  17. Yup, defintely a twinkle in her eye. Is that telle mère, telle fille? ;-)

    Comment by Iain — August 30, 2005 @ 10:56 am

  18. I don’t know if I am old enough to eat a gingerbread man and read a magazine at the same time…multitasking is overrated…

    Comment by Anne — August 30, 2005 @ 11:10 am

  19. 1-0 was the score before take-off – I’m just wondering what the final score was. I often take an early lead with my kids only to suffer a thorough thrashing before the match has ended.

    Comment by Universal Soldier — August 30, 2005 @ 8:48 pm

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