So the summer holidays are eventually upon us. I say eventually, what I actually mean was that they hurtled toward me like a chubby boy with a Vaselined rear end on a fun park slide.
One moment, we had a six week school term in front of us, I bent down to pick up something from the floor (I cannot recall, but the laws of probability states it was highly likely to be an item of offspring’s clothing) and by the time I had straightened up, it was the last day of term.
I was therefore, technically on holiday too, except when you run your own business, technically or otherwise, there really is no such thing as a holiday.
Most of the summer term passed in a blur of plotting and scheming – finding clubs, activities and any other exhausting-sounding ways for my five year old son to spend time away from home, thus allowing me to actually do some work. It became that much of a logistical operation that there were actual spreadsheets involved. But, it got sorted, and I thought that was the hard bit done. And then we actually started the holidays.
There are a few weeks where, through guilt about not spending time with my son (okay, lack of budget may have played a part), he was at home. I was therefore, technically on holiday too, except when you run your own business, technically or otherwise, there really is no such thing as a holiday. It’s more a thing where you spend a little less time at your desk or in front of a client, whilst you get a little better at fibbing about where you are and what you are doing, whilst you have one eye on your phone and the other on your child doing Kamikaze jumps on the trampoline.
And so I have devised my very own Summer Holiday Business Lingo, an essential guide to any parent trying to survive juggling work, kids and a life. Or, in my case, sometimes half a life. Google has yet to catch up and provide on-line translation, so I have done the honourable thing and provided it here:
“Oh, sorry, I can’t make that meeting, I am already with a client that day.”
Means: “Tough luck, I’m at the London Aquarium that day.”
“Yes, business is hectic at the moment.”
Means: “Hectic? Don’t talk to me about bloody hectic. I am currently trying to squeeze a day’s work into a 15 minutes slot whilst Dinopaws is on.”
“You’ll probably find this project better suited to your strategic aims if you start it in September.”
Means: “Please, please don’t ask me to start this project in August.”
“If you could just hold a minute, I have another call coming through.”
Means: “Hang on a second, I need to wipe a large dribble of ice cream from my son’s chin.”
“Sorry for the delay with my response, I am having problems accessing my emails.”
Means: ” Sorry for the delay with my response, I am having problems accessing my emails as my 5 year old is watching Scooby Doo on my PC and won’t budge for love nor a Custard Cream.
“I will write the proposal this afternoon.”
Means: “I will write the proposal this afternoon in utter darkness with only the light of my iPhone to guide me, surrounded by popcorn-munching juveniles as I accompany my son to the cinema.”
“Noise? Oh, that. Just a police siren from the road, I think.”
Means: “Oh, that. Yes, that is my son, who appears to have tripped over his own excitement and is currently sprawled face down on the path, but don’t worry, I am sure he will stop screaming any minute now.”
“Yes, I am just making final amends and then I will print a final copy for our meeting.”
Means: “Yes, I am just waiting for the document to dry on the washing line as there was a minor accident involving orange squash and a five year old.”
“I love the summer holidays.”
Means: “I bloody hate the summer holidays.”