Feeling the effects of hubby's gale-force temper
YOUR husband is furious and you are all, without exception, in the doghouse. The previous nasty, wind-tossed night your spouse arrived home late from a meeting.
You'd gone to bed early with the flu, instructing the Wolverine and the next youngest to ensure all doors and windows were secure.
They did exactly that -- leaving the keys in the locks in both front and back doors so your husband couldn't get in when he arrived home shortly before midnight.
He rang the house phone, which is in the kitchen, and the mobiles belonging to you and the Wolverine.
Your mobile trilled away uselessly in your zipped handbag. The Wolverine's phone, which as usual had been confiscated for some misdemeanour, reposed comfortably and switched-off between the pages of Joyce's 'Ulysses' -- somewhere, you were certain, she would never think to look -- in a bookshelf in the sitting room.
As the gale howled and the rain lashed, your life partner hammered with increasing desperation on the back door, then on the front.
Nobody answered. He walked around the house and threw gravel at each bedroom window. Nobody stirred.
Eventually he broke into the shed and got the ladder.
He put the ladder against the gable wall and climbed up to the Wolverine's second-storey bedroom window.
He banged on the glass.
"What is it now?" she snarled.
Disconcerted by the fact that she was wide awake and must surely have heard him shouting for help and throwing gravel at her window, her father explained that he couldn't get into the house.
It was midnight and pouring rain, he pointed out. He was at the top of a ladder outside her bedroom window because he'd been locked out. Would she please come down and let him in?
"Why can't you ask one of the others?" she inquired with asperity, before eventually conceding to go downstairs and open the back door for her drenched, irate father.
Your husband, by this stage, is rightly furious.
His entire family, he believes, lay snuggled in their cosy beds listening to him pacing around the house in the midst of a storm throwing gravel at the windows and pleading to be let in.
The next morning, following the usual minor fracas, the Wolverine informed him that he was a useless parent.
To her surprise, he agreed. He had to be, he said coldly, given how she was turning out. She ran, bawling, out of the kitchen.
Tough, he said, and left for work.