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Wow … that’s all … just wow

August 6, 2012

What a day …

we zipped up to London on the train, Hope grinning away as the sky flashed past and chatting to the other passengers before we arrived at the shiny bright new Kings Cross station… that was wow … as was the amount of help offered to visitors by the purple people, the official Olympics ‘meeters and greeters’ .. lovely to see everyone in Kings Cross smiling, I have never seen that before.

We sat by the river as we were early for our meeting and Hope had her first experience in a high chair, I was terrified she’d fall out of the front, back or sides so didn’t relax much but she seemed to have fun and made great friends with someone sitting just near by.

Then we wandered around the corner to Kids Company and there WOW really did come into play … the work they have done with vulnerable children from across London is just incredible … read about it on their website if you do nothing else today.

The whole office was less like an office and more like a vivid joyful dream culminating in Camila’s room which had a magical huge enormous tree growing in the middle of it surrounded by wonderful bright art and, well, just stuff… If I thought my mother’s house was an Aladdin’s cave I now realise she has some way to go! We chatted about inspirational life changing work and issues with fund-raising, and the sheer and utter importance of love and positive news in the world and in children’s lives, that and of self worth. Hope hearing children mentioned woke up and started to join in the conversation … in the end a little too vociferously but it was a delight to have her there and made us reflect on the joy and the nature of the mother / baby bond. I left, clutching a lovely heart shaped box full of love and pistachio nuts and wandered down the stairs in a reverie thinking of how much light and love can change lives. That may sound fluffy and soft, it isn’t … the elegant beautiful young lady that joined in our meeting had, at 16 presumed her life’s aspiration was “getting pregnant and moving into a council flat” … then she came across Kids Co … now at 23 she is an Oxford graduate and a teacher trying to show other teachers and pupils the benefits of listening, valuing and encouraging children and young people, her life turned around and passing on that love to others. We also talked briefly about the positive benefit of the Olympics, but also the fact that many people in less well off bits of London are virtually excluded from the games by virtue of the cost, and how they felt possibly even more isolated as a result of them. I hope in some small way the national pride and exuberance does filter through and allay any bitterness or frustration but I fully understand how it must feel to have the world partying on your patch and just to have to watch on TV … something else I think the Government could have addressed more properly. It was a thought provoking hour and my mind has been racing ever since.

When we left the meeting the delightful girls on the reception helped us with where to change nappies, another stunningly bright colourful exciting room and then the lovely Maya asked to hold Hope … that made me smile … and Hope too.

Hope and her friend Maya in the colourful lobby of Kids Company

We walked back along the river and over the ‘bouncy’ bridge towards St Paul’s … the sun was out but there was a storm brewing so the sky was amazing. We pottered around a while on the bridge and listened to reams of London names and sounds and facts broadcast from under the bridge in an eerie wonderful manner and looked over to Tower Bridge where the Olympic rings hang proudly down. A special moment (even though Hope slept through it!).

Back at Kings Cross we jumped on a train and chatted to each other all the way back … Hope grinned for nearly an hour and then fell asleep just as we reached Cambridge. The storm hit just as we arrived, we ran to the car only to find I’d lost the keys … I had some odd memory of holding them as I went through the barriers in the morning … I’d also dropped them and thankfully a nice chap had found them and handed them into lost property … only issue was that Lost Property closed at 5pm and it was by then ten past. I was so tired and post euphoric exhausted and burst into tears … that caused another nice man in a pink Olympic tabard to rush off and hunt for nearly half an hour in the cupboard before, just as I’d given up thinking they’d ever reappear, plonking them on my lap. I cried again … and thought Wow … his kindness, the luck of them being handed in … more than a scatty idiot deserved but just what Hope wanted as she was waking up by then and fractious.

So … an amazing day … aren’t they all … oh and I also finished the next instalment of Hope and Dreams my ‘column’ in the Cambridge News carrying on the Springsteen song title theme and trying to tie in with the Olympics it’s called My Beautiful Reward.

Now then – go and look at Kids Company, dig around in your pockets and swell their coffers so they can do even more of their wonderful work … I’m off to bed as we’re off to the Synchronised Swimming final at the Olympics for our next adventure and I need some rest first!

3 Comments leave one →
  1. August 7, 2012 5:55 pm

    What a truly amazing day! Hope is looking gorgeous as ever!

  2. maya alexander permalink
    August 8, 2012 11:55 am

    awwwww lovely 🙂 was wonderful to meet you and hope xxx love maya/myra lol)

  3. August 12, 2012 9:54 pm

    It sounds like a really great day, you were so lucky to find your keys again midst all the crowds. Hope is a gorgeous little girl.

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