Saturday, 21 February 2015

Baby you can drive my... train

Real train drivers don't wear crystal necklaces
Because my birthday clashes with a family funeral (see my previous post), Mr Robot gave me my birthday present early. I think he wanted me to have time to enjoy it, and for him to be able to enjoy my excitement.

He's been planning the gift for some time. He always laughs at me because I love seeing the steam trains puffing past the office and even dragged him to see my favourites, the A4s, at the Great Gathering at the National Railway Museum. So what has he got me for my birthday? I'm going to drive a steam train!



That's not the whole gift, though. We're having to rearrange the actual day I was due to drive - I knew he'd got something planned and told him to rearrange whatever it was because the funeral takes priority. That's a no-brainer, really, but when you're recently bereaved all your emotions are in full flood, and I didn't want him to get stressed about possible disappointment when he could just cancel whatever he'd planned. I'd actually suspected something burlesque-related. However, he always makes the most amazing packages up, and had also got me a replica manual on how to drive steam trains, AND a replica steam train driver's outfit, consisting of heavy cotton dungarees, cap and jacket! It's important for them to be cotton as I'll be standing near the firebox, possibly even stoking it. Synthetic material would be a disaster (and apparently one of my steampunk chums tried doing it in a waxed kilt - oh dear!) Mr Robot gave me those last night, with a 'voucher' for a session driving one of the Swindon and Cricklade Railway's engines.

I worry that in posting this so soon after my last post, you're going to think I'm a heartless old witch, but honestly it's nice to have something pleasant to look forward to, and I wouldn't have minded if Pete had simply cancelled everything and not mentioned the book and outfit. He decided he wanted me to have them last night. The awful here-and-now is full of necessities and responsibilities, and some of them can only be done by him, and I think the thoughts of happier, gentler times ahead are helping him. I hope to be able to share those happy times with you on this blog.

22 comments :

  1. What a nice present to receive and I don't think you're heartless at all, it takes your mind away from the sadness for a moment and I don't think there's anything wrong with that. Happy early birthday Mim xxx

    ReplyDelete
  2. I'm liking the crystal necklace and engine driver hat combination!
    What a brilliant present. One of the highlights of our festival calendar is Indietracks at the Midland Railway Museum - indie music and steam trains.
    I don't think you're heartless at all, I found posting in the days between my mum's death and her funeral enormously therapeutic.
    Hope the funeral goes as well as it can and that you get to enjoy your birthday. xxx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Wow, that festival sounds ace. Swindon and Cricklade do all sorts of events, and if we have a fun day I'll try to talk the Mr into going to their 40s weekend.

      The funeral will be a full-on Catholic jobbie, so it will certainly be interesting!

      Delete
  3. No one will think you heartless, or anything of the sort (and anyone that would doesn't deserve your time). There was a lot of thought, and love put into your Birthday.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Isn't he a sweetie! I'm glad that you and he had something to be happy about, which is what you need when you're grieving.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. He is lovely. I think he's really looking forward to something lighthearted too.

      Delete
  5. Such an amazing present - you look cute in the hat!! I think this is lovely, and not at all heartless, you have to continue some kind of normality at some point and this is a joyful way back in, if you see what I mean? I hope you enjoy the train experience, and that you both manage to stay kind to each other and help each other through this tough time. xx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you. It's weird how normality creeps up on you; you start out focussed on one thing, and slowly other things start to come back within your sphere of attention. (And it's surprising how much of it you then realise was never worth worrying about in the first place!)

      Delete
  6. I love the hat, I'd be wearing it all the time!
    You are not heartless at all, you most definitely need happy distractions and things to look forward too when times are bleak. I hope you both have a wonderful day.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. IT FITS!

      That's the amazing thing. I have a tiny head, which is great as a lot of vintage hats are tiny, but I can't normally wear new ones.

      Delete
  7. Not in the least heartless - it's quite possible to feel terribly sad about the death of a loved one, but know that it's good to have plans and treats to look forward to as well. It's a very thoughtful gift, and one your MIL would have wanted you to enjoy. xxx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Curtise. I think we're both looking forward to fun times.

      Delete
  8. Enjoy yourself, we go on living and those who have departed would want that, not for us to leave our lives unlived ever afterwards as a result of their no longer being with us.
    She would have wanted you to have some fun.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I hope so. We're thinking of taking her ashes on a road trip round her favourite places...

      Delete
  9. What a fabulous, thoughtful gift. I don't think you are being heartless at all, it sounds like your mother in law would have been very interested to hear all about it and would have wanted you both to enjoy it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. She's probably have told us all about travelling on real ones!

      Delete
  10. No way are you heartless and no doubt your mother-in-law would have probably approved of such a thoughtful present from Mr Robot. Give the engine's whistle a good old hoot in celebration of your mother-in-law's life and remember all the happy times you shared.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Indeed! I shall give it a good old toot for her.

      Delete
  11. What an amazing present! Your husband is definitely a keeper. As everyone else has said, it's not heartless. You still need to live your lives and I'm sure you mum-in-law would've wanted you to have a lovely birthday. Enjoy yourself! x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, she always remembered birthdays. I found a card - clearly to me, she only has one daughter-in-law - and a packet of diamante to go with the hotfix gun she got me for Christmas while we were tidying the house. I am going to spangle an extra-special burlesque bra with those!

      Delete