Friday, 30 September 2011

Quietly Making My Presence Felt

Well, on balance, I would say that my first fortnight at theological college has been a success.  I have been planning and preparing for it for quite some time because I had to ensure that I remained the absolute centre of attention.  The mere fact that my mother is an ordinand now and *dares* to have divided loyalties is simply not acceptable.  So I began to plot.   

Mother had of course moved into a residential corridor and so had a room surrounded by the rooms of other ordinands.  The walls are of course just as thick as those in any college dormitory so the sound proofing is truly of top quality construction. (Define irony: The expression of one's meaning by using language that normally signifies the opposite, typically for humorous or emphatic effect.)  I sense an opportunity.  

As most of my loyal readers will be aware, I *love* to sleep in.  5:00am is just the perfect sort of lie in.  So on that basis, once I had *finally* woken up, I wanted to make sure that all of my new friends knew I had woken up just in case they were worried about me so I decided to SHOUT RATHER LOUDLY.  
Mother tried toys.  
NO MOTHER, I DON'T WANT TOYS!  
Mother tried my dummy.  
NO MOTHER, I DON'T WANT MY DUMMY!  
Mother tried milk.  
IT'S VERY NICE MILK MOM BUT IT'S NOT GOING TO MAKE ME BE QUIET!  
Mother tried a nice warm cuddle in her bed.  
THIS IS A LOVELY CUDDLE MOM, I THINK SOME HAPPY SQUEALING WILL MAKE IT SO MUCH BETTER!!  
Mother tried a nappy change, dressing me, playing with me, putting my dummy in (pppffffftttttt) and all sorts of other things.  
MOTHER DO YOU THINK MY NEW FRIENDS ARE AWAKE YET?   
Yes Adam.  In fact, I do think your new friends are awake by now, however the definition of "friends" might be a touch flexible.  
WHY'S THAT MOTHER?  AM I MAKING AN IMPRESSION?  
Adam dear, it's 5:30am, I think we can be *certain* that you're making an impression.  
MOM, WHY ARE YOU SIGHING???  
Never mind Adam, you wouldn't understand.  
OK MOM, YOU CAN EXPLAIN IT TO ME LATER!  
Yes, Adam, later would be good.

So later arrived.  I knew mother was very worried about leaving me in nursery for the first time so I made absolutely certain she knew where my priorities lay and my first port of call was to utterly and completely charm my key worker, Tracey.  Mom passed me into Tracey's arms trying to choke back her tears and I gave Tracey a BIG grin to begin the offensive.  She jiggled me a a bit in her arms and bounced me up and down and I started to laugh (I've read somewhere that no one can resist a giggling baby).  Mother snuck out the door wiping away her tears and I flatly ignored her.  I was busy.  It took me no more than an hour to entirely charm Tracey and the rest of the morning to ensure the rest of the staff knew I was going to be their favourite.  (As my readers will note, humility is one of my strengths.  I get that from my mother.)  All in all, the morning was a success.

As you might expect, Mother has to go to chapel quite a lot, something to do with wanting to be a Vicar.  There's Morning Prayer every day at 8am and a Communion service on Wednesday at 5:15pm.  There was no way I was going to attend these services quietly, I had to be certain EVERYONE knew I was there so I employed a variety of tactics for these times.  I felt Morning Prayer would be the best time to join in with the singing and to shout along with the music but unfortunately, not too many people noticed me because they were all singing too.  I therefore hatched plan B and picked my moment very carefully.  About twenty minutes into the service was the perfect opportunity because the leader made the mistake of suggesting that all of us spend some time sitting quietly and praying to hear what the Lord might wish to say.  Aha.  I sense...an opportunity.  

BAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  
I tried to make it as loud as I could.  
Mother tried the dummy.  
PPPFFFFTTTTTTT!!!  No thanks Mum, I don't need that.  BAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  
She tried wiggling my butterfly in front of me.  Nah.  Boring.  BAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  
She tried bouncing me up and down.  Ooooh this is fun!  BAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  
Then she made the somewhat catastrophic mistake of attempting to shush me.  
The INDIGNITY!  I don't DO shush.  BAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Success.  I have made my mark.   And with that, at 8:29 with 1 minute to go before chapel ends and breakfast begins...I fell asleep.  Excellent.  Mother was QUITE delighted with me.  She told me so.  In no uncertain terms.  Aaahhhhhh.  Adam has arrived.  

So, that was Morning Prayer.  How to make my mark on the Communion Service?  I particularly liked this one, there were three other babies there so I had some friends to play with.  We shouted and danced along with the songs but that didn't really make me stand out because it was some quite loud singing so everyone just smiled indulgently at us.  This isn't nearly the impact I was hoping for so I watched, I waited and I plotted.

Then, I spied my moment.  I noticed a man in a dress standing at the front of the chapel.  (Mother tells me this isn't a dress but in fact clerical robes.  Personally, I don't see the difference.  She also says he's the Dean of Studies, the Reverend Doctor Ian Paul.  So I'm guessing he's the sort of person we should be listening to?)  The Reverend Doctor suggested that we should all take some time for quiet.  (Yes, a developing situation here.)  Then he suggested that all of us take some time to confess our sins before God.  (Aha!)  

I thought about it.  I took some time to form it.  I rocked a bit.  I could feel it was in there, it was just...the...timing.....and success!  I let out the single loudest, most multi-tonal belch I think I have ever uttered (well except for my early days with colic but we won't count that).  Oh yes, I had made my mark.  Mother was stifling some rather embarrassed laughter and the other parents around her were grinning too.  Then I looked around and discovered that there were a fair few people further afield in the chapel also stifling grins with hands covering their faces.  Hmmm.  I do hope you're all thinking about your sins people!  You are trainee Vicars so it does come with the job now!  Ahem.........Adam has arrived.

Do we think that was enough for one evening?  Oh goodness no, I'm just getting started.  The man in the dress was back again. (They're robes Adam dear.)  Yeah, anyway, the man in the dress was back.  He mentioned something about gathering around the Lord's table for supper.  Excellent!  Supper?  Someone mentioned supper?  Fabulous, I'm hungry now Mother, I'd like some supper please!  (Adam, you're missing the point, it's the LORD'S supper, not Adam's supper.)  MOTHER!  I WANT MY SUPPER NOW!!!!!!!!  
NNNNNOOOOOOWWWWWWWW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Thankfully, Mother got the point *quite* quickly and started spooning carrot porridge into my mouth.  (It's a lovely mixture of carrot, baby rice and my milk.  I'm really quite fond of it.)  I had a HUGE bowl of carrot porridge, thus ensuring that Mother entirely missed her Communion. But that was alright, I was full now and that's all that mattered.  So with that, at 1829, I began to snore.  Loudly of course.  Fortunately Mother's supper started at 1830 so she thought I'd fallen asleep at just the perfect time.  Excellent, I'm so glad to please.  You see, I was just being considerate and allowing the staff some time to eat themselves.  One must ensure one keeps the staff well fed, otherwise they become discontented and may even risk paying less attention to ones needs.  This, of course, cannot be allowed.

All in all, I'd say my first fortnight at theological college has been a distinct success.  Yes mother, I think I'll go again thank you very much.  It was fun.  :-)

2 comments:

  1. Ha I heard the belch and wondered which baby (or adult) had emitted said belch... nice to know it was from a friend, but now having discovered his rather Machiavellian plans, I'm a tad worried...
    and I here was thinking I was the one charming him.

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  2. Ah but this is where you're wrong Mrs Bola, it is in fact I who am charming you...and this is only stage 1 of my plan to take over the world....

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