Last Friday, my sister-in-law and I decided to take advantage of the gorgeous winter weather and head out to do some Christmas shopping for handmade curiosities in quaint, countryside shops.
Just kidding! It was pouring rain and the sun didn't come out and we went to Ikea.
I had to pick up some decor and plates and flatware and serving dishes and basically everything because Fr. In-Law doesn't want to host Christmas dinner after all and everyone else in the family decided it would be cool for us to host it.
So I bought all my gear and we went back to my sister-in-law's place to decorate her tree and get her house looking spiffy for the holidays. Mission accomplished, her tree looks awesome. After all, I have to get my tree-jollies from other people this year. I'm okay with that.
Anyway, after many hours of hard holiday graft, the Agent came to pick me up and we made our way back home. Too tired/lazy/whatever to stir up our own meatless dinner, I finally gave up on my post-baby moratorium on fish and chips and suggested it. Because a) in the village, that's the only take out you're going to get anyway and b) Englishmen never say no to fish and chips. Win-Win.
Our local chippy is called Barnacle Bill's. Barnacle Bill is both awesome and hilarious. He's always talking about weird village gossip and politics and won't tell you his real name. Or won't tell me anyway. I never have any idea what he's talking about. I just smile and nod because he makes delightful non-soggy fish. You'd be surprised at how often fish and chips are soggy. It's gross.
Last time I saw him I was still pregnant. When I waddled in to collect our Friday usual, he says to me…
"You know me' chips have sent off women in the village before!"
Yeah, ok Barnacle Bill. I seriously doubt ye' chips are gonna send me into labor because I'm not due for three weeks and everyone knows first babies are always late and also they're just chips and can I please have some tartar sauce thankyouverymuch.
We went home, had our tea (which incidentally means dinner, a cup of tea and also afternoon tea in the UK, so don't get confused!) and I told the Agent about Barnacle Bill's latest round of crazy. We laughed about it and then he very soberly reminded me that I wasn't allowed to go into labor anyway because he was leaving for a secret mission early in the morning.
And then I started having contractions.