“Here you are,” she offers. “There are some instructions on here, as well.”
I take the squirrel somewhat dubiously. We drive home – me, the Toddler, and a squirrel.
“I’m Sammy the Squirrel!” reads the instruction sheet. “It is all dark and lonely at nursery at the weekends. Please take me home and look after me!”
I glare at the squirrel. It looks back at me with beady buttony eyes. The Toddler strokes its label, absent-mindedly.
“Please will you write in my special book about what I’ve done with your family, drawing pictures or adding photos,” the sheet continues.
I look at the squirrel. I look at the Toddler. She is two years old now, and still very backward in her essay constructions. In fact all she can really do is draw butterflies – odd GM-mutated ones that just look like zig zag lines. I doubt that she will be able to write a ‘what we did on our holidays – me and squirrel’ piece.
I have not been given homework for coming up for twenty years now, and to be honest I had hoped to have left all that stuff behind me. Now I have to write the bloody ‘Diary of a Nobody’ in vermin form. It sits on the table, clearly looking forward to a few days of adventure and excitement – unfortunately I then completely forget about it and resort to taking a couple of snatched photos of it in the pub.
This does not happen to Martin Amis.