I'm not sure if we do it on purpose, but we don't tend to do things easily. I try to "keep things simple" but often fail to do so and we always seem to have lot of different things to do, to be five places at once, and when it rains it pours...
This morning not only did it rain, it poured. Literally. Along with the rain arriving so did a "bathroom guy" (we are renovating the bathroom so that Evan gets the benefit of a walk-in shower, essential for a growing lad), a radio presenter and a TV reporter. We also had thought we had better pack for the trip to London so three loads of washing were queued up.
Katherine Hannah was first up - she had a bit of a chat with Evan and then managed the amazing feat of leaving Sam lost for words when trying to get some quotes from us. As ever, Evan wasn't lost for words - although he did tell Katherine (of BBC Radio Leeds) all about visiting Calendar (ITV) - so that would test her editing skills. In fact, much of what happened over the next few days would surely test the editing skills of the various media teams we worked with. She also coped admirably with the background bangs, crashes and wallops generated by someone ripping out a bathroom. A few successful takes later Katherine left us in the hands of Olivia Richwald, who set up camera in the conservatory. Well, I say conservatory - it was built as that but is basically a big toy box. I'm sure (ok, pretty sure - ok, ok, fairly sure...) we'll recall it as a grown-ups' space eventually but for now it's the kids' space.
Just as Katherine had generated silence, Olivia generated harmony. She asked if she could get a shot of all the kids playing together. Now, given that we have a ten year old girl and eight and five year old boys, even Kofi Annan might struggle to get that combination, in ANY family, to play together in front of a TV camera AND do an interview at the same time. However, after about 10 minutes they had done us proud and Olivia seemed happy so Maya and Sam were excused and Evan stayed on for a one-to-one.
I was happy to avoid the camera so made a coffee, checked on the bathroom guy, did some tweeting while Loup hid by doing some washing and also checked on the bathroom guy (!) however, I did keep an ear out and heard Ev "grassing us up" that 'Maya wanted to go to Buckingham Palace but they are taking us to see the Natural History Museum instead' - which was news to me (the Palace bit) but interesting to hear the kids' interpretation of events.
After that, it was time for us to get in on the action, despite our best efforts to discourage Olivia that she needed it. To be honest, I struggle to answer questions in this environment. I tend to mumble something and then think of a really good answer about an hour later. I like to ponder on things and then write on here later on but, as I said, they didn't go to editing class for nothing. So we all sat there on the sofa and answered a few questions and, perhaps sensing that we'd collectively had enough, Olivia called it a day and dashed off into the rain laiden down with her equipment.
We then had the rest of the day to ourselves. Which, if we did things easily, would have been spent sitting around worrying about what was to come. However, we don't do things simply, so the rest of the day was spent attending a birthday party, picking up some friends from the airport, having haircuts, going for baths/showers (going to London after three days of bathing in a sink might not give the right impression...) and finally getting packed (oh, and I popped to the local pub quiz for a bit).
We were ready.
As much as we could be.
What would happen over the next couple of days? - We weren't really sure, but we were ready for it.