“I’ll be the Mum and you can be the Grandma,” said Miss Four.
“Wait, what?” I said, tearing my eyes away from the very important work I was doing on the computer (Facebook).
She thrust her doll at me. “Baby wants Grandma.”
“Um, okay then but I’d like you to know that I’m a bit young to be a Grandma.”
She looked carefully at my gray hairs, crows-feet and deplorable fashion sense, and smirked. Yeah okay, some of the girls I went to school with are grandmothers now, but that doesn’t mean anyone is allowed to think that I could be.
We played our game for a while. I kept shoving the baby back at her claiming that it needed its Mummy, and she repeatedly thrust it back at me saying that baby really, really wanted Grandma. She helpfully provided accompanying “Waaaaaah waaaaaah” noises that would only stop once I accepted the doll. I saw a glimpse of the future and was afraid.
Fortunately I was able to end the game by declaring that it was time to go pick up her brother from school.
She grabbed her doll and we headed off, stopping at the supermarket to grab a few things before getting her brother.
“Grandma, baby needs you, waaaaaah, waaaaah.”
“Your grandaughter is gorgeous. My grandaughter has hair like hers,” said the elderly lady who couldn’t hear me when I said ‘excuse me’ several times as we tried to get past her in the aisle, but was able to hear the word Grandma at 200 paces. “How many grandchildren do you have,” she asked before attempting to regale me with tales about her seven grandchildren.
“I’m her Mum, actually.”
“The look you were going for was embarressment, old lady, not disbelief!” I thought as I flounced away.
After wandering up and down a few aisles I nonchalantly headed down the beauty aisle and grabbed some anti-wrinkle cream. It didn’t work, in case you were wondering.
The Grandma game has been going on for a while now, and I can no longer be bothered correcting the general population who are obviously in desperate need of an eye examination. In fact, I hadn’t given it much more thought until I walked into Miss Four’s bedroom and saw this:
Oh what’s that in amongst her treasured wall art? Why it’s a brochure for a retirement village!
At first I was all like WTF (see how I used an acronym there that old people wouldn’t understand, thus proving my youthfulness?), but then I read the blurb highlights: they have people there who can care for you, it’s on flat ground, they boast that it’s an old-fashioned Kiwi community, and you’re allowed to walk to the local shopping centre whenever you like. I never get to do anything whenever I like. I looked down at my clothes; they’re pretty old fashioned. My creaky knees wouldn’t mind a bit of flat ground, and I wouldn’t say no to someone looking after me for a bit. It sounded pretty good actually.
They wouldn’t have me.
Apparently I’m too young.