Why working with children is a nightmare


“When can we go and play at Restaurants, Mum?”

No, I love our children. And OF COURSE I’m delighted that they are here with us. As I said to Mr Millard “just think – we have three months unlimited time with our children, how lovely, no nannies, no aupairs”…and then REALITY hit.How are we going to make six documentaries and no end of written pieces with three, and then (after a month) four children aged 4, 6, 9 and 11. In the French overseas territories.

To explain what I mean, take a look at this picture. Looks pretty tame. It’s Lucien (4) sitting in a Rum Distillery in Martinique. All well and good. What the picture doesnt show is that behind him there is a giant map, in French, of the history of this distillery and the entire history of sugar cane. I have to read this history, translate it and then interview the director of said distillery, on camera, in about 2 minutes time. And Lucien doesn’t want me to do this. No,  no, He wants me to play Restaurants. And then he wants to be taken to the loo “for a poo”. When we arrive at the loo, via a tropical rainstorm (bang goes the coiffed hair), he announces the poo has gone away, and he wants a pee. Or doesnt want the loo at all. No, what he really wants is a glass of milk. Hand-milked by me, with a local cow. And on and on.

It’s driving Pip and I to mild insanity. Our guide, a very learned chap called Laurent, has  had to get used to playing a game called Find, and then Catch the Mango. Instead of telling us about the history of Martinique and pointing out the ruined cathedral.

Furthermore, putting them in front of a TV when their mother is performing is no sop either. You would have thought they would be delighted to see their mother (moi) speaking French, but no. Take a look at the video, one post ahead, loyally shot by Mr Millard on my Flip camera, and utterly sabotaged by our delightful offspring. Why didn’t we leave them behind?

Have to go now, I need to play Restaurants again….

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