Even so, there’ll be time for an audio-book. In the past, we have enjoyed Three Men in a Boat, Just William, The Hitchhikers’ Guide to the Galaxy. But in these pressurised exam years there is always work to do, even in the car. With their iPods plugged in to drown their parents’ chat, and pausing every so often to be car-sick, Pascoe, Perran and Carenza have struggled to revise.
But this half term, Perran is not overwhelmed: he estimates that he can achieve his offers without too much stress – the advantage of having a clearer picture.
Happily I walk to the library for an audio-book. The automated machine gives me the equivalent of an e-scowl and although the word “blacklist” does not actually appear on the screen I can see I need to bring a couple of books back. Is that a growl I hear as I retrieve my card?
At home, I hunt for second-hand tapes – Henry James, Joseph Conrad: I am a sad, aspirational mother. Then, Lucky Jim by Kingsley Amis. Hooray. We will have fun.