Schools everywhere are breaking up for the summer holidays.
I was scrolling through Facebook yesterday, and I came across several variations of the same meme: a headline saying SCHOOL'S OUT FOR SUMMER, then a caption saying KIDS over footage of children going wild with excitement, a caption saying TEACHERS, over footage of adults doing the same, then a caption saying PARENTS over footage of a mum looking harassed and glugging from a glass of wine bigger than her own head.
Each of these memes has had millions of views.
In the old days, I would have merrily added my own comment and shared to all my Facebook friends. Then I would have cracked open (another) bottle of vino, secure in the knowledge that everyone else was doing the same thing. Facebook said so.
This summer, however, I realise - more than ever - that wine does not make the summer holidays flow more swimmingly. Quite the reverse.
The kids, dog and I are up in the wilds of Scotland. We have a house which is, literally, in the middle of nowhere.
The nearest shop is ten minutes drive (about one and a half hours by foot) away. We hole ourselves up with board games, piano, guitar, ukulele and an open fire.... and chill.
Yesterday, we ran out of milk. I didn't want to drag everyone out in the rain, so I left my (relatively) responsible teenager in charge of her two younger siblings and headed out to the nearest town.
About three quarters of the way there, the car started shuddering wildly, as if I was crossing the surface of the moon. I suspected a puncture.
I got out of the car to take a look and I had literally no tyre left at all on one of the rear wheels. Total blowout. Disaster.
I knew that it would be hours before a breakdown truck could reach me and I had to get back to the kids. I was an hour's walk away, at least.
Few cars travel down that road, but, luckily, after a few minutes I managed to flag down a friendly white van man who drove me home.
I then called the AA (Automobile Association, not Alcoholics Anonymous), who said that they could tow my car to the nearest tyre fitter, but it would take an hour and half to get to me.
I asked if they could collect me from my house and drive me the five minutes it would take to get back to my abandoned car. They said no, take a taxi.
I explained that the nearest taxi firm was forty-five minutes away and had to be booked days in advance. They said to walk.
I explained that it would take an hour to walk and I had three children with me. They said sorry, but it's company policy. I had to meet them by my car.
I walked to the nearest neighbour and begged for a lift. For the second time, the kindness of other people saved me.
I got back to my car, met the breakdown chap, was towed to a tyre place, spent all my shoe money on a tyre and got home.
But the real miracle about all of this is that it all happened without me getting at all cross. Or stressed. Or shouting.
I didn't get annoyed with the AA lady for refusing to bend the rules (not her fault). I didn't panic, stamp, yell and curse. I was zen.
Needless to say, in the drinking days I would not have dealt with a day like that in the same way. You know exactly how it would have gone. You've been there too, I expect.
So now I look at those Facebook memes, at those mums glugging back the wine, and I think I get it. Been there, done that. But that's really not going to help, you know.
Love SM x