Ok I admit that this particular circle of hell was my own doing. But it's actually Mandi's fault for saying she had to go and then Ma overheard me say to H that I'd never been so of course, we had to go.
Cue another motorway journey with running comentary on every road sign and there we were. Thank God Mandi had mentioned that the architecture is from the Grecian/Gnome/Disney school, so I was partly prepared. Ma thought it was beautiful, I thought it was horrific and H thought it was boring.
We were all hungry so food was first. Ma did her usual 'I don't mind what I have but I don't want much' and for once I took her at her word and we went to a noodle place to please H. So one pad thai, one green curry and one 'well the only thing I'll eat on there is the coconut prawns'. I'd forgotten my glasses so had to do a mercy dash to Boots for some readers because in order to focus on the food I'm eating without wearing them I have to sit roughly 6 inches further away than my arms are long... Lovely food. Ma did in fact eat all her deep fried coconut prawns, had a very confused conversation with a sweet young couple at the next table and was very taken with a new drink called Coca Cola.
After lunch we did half a turn around the top floor (via a swift punt around the Radley shop) before Ma had had enough and we came home again. Apart from another running commentary and opening the passenger door while we were on the motorway when trying to open her window (note to self, use central locking button and try to control my scream reflex) we had an event-free return home.
Sartorial moment of the day:
Walking into the kitchen for her breakfast wearing a black and white tunic of mine (I am at least 4 sizes bigger) with a sleeveless green vest over the top, flourescent pink stilettos but no lower body garments of any description.
Every octogenerian's dream.
Ma is still very very teary, this afternoon the fact that it was pleasantly sunny set her off. I am at a loss as to how I can help her at times like this. Is it better to let her get upset and spend the best part of an hour in distress or try and chivvy her out of it? I think the dementia hinders in this situation. Her increasingly arbitrary (not quite the right word I think) recollection about dad's death is harder for her to deal with than if she'd had a normal seven months of grieving. It's so hard for her though. She mixes up the details of Dad's death with other deaths ie her father/mother/neighbours/friends and has some entrenched false memories about when dad died. This means that she gets horribly distressed about things which never actually happened. And it's a delicate matter to try and put the record straight in the hope that this time it will stick.