1. We devote the morning to Alec, very little housework, just playing with, chatting, reading to, cuddling, bubbing and listening to because...
2. ...after lunch my parents come and take him away for an overnight visit. I carry him out to the car. He looks back towards the front door and says almost impatiently: "Bye Daddy, bye bye!"
3. And what do we do with this afternoon and night of freedom?
a. We pick up my glasses -- corrected lenses are always a psychedelic experience for me, and I enjoy the altered state while it lasts. "All the colours are so bright," says a friend of a friend that we run into, "and you can see the trees and the... oh, watch out for the puddles!" And I glance down, fooled for a moment.
b. We check out the charity shops -- initially looking for a cheap Poe and a cheap Hawthorne for my course -- but soon we are searching for toys and train books. We find a pull-along Brio train (Alec's big favourite is a pull-along telephone, so we imagine that a train on a string will blow his mind) and think ourselves very lucky.
c. We have a kip.
d. We go out for dinner (very early because we are used to eating with Alec at 5pm), have a cocktail and a glass of wine each, and then come home and go straight to bed, together, alone, in the double bed.