My alarm went off at 5.25am this Monday morning, and against all odds, I was in a pretty good mood. I managed to hit the road in time for my not insignificant commute to Richmond, but the sky was bright and I had a good week ahead of me. So far, so good.
Now, let me introduce the pop-tart. For the first 19 weeks of my pregnancy, I suffered from terrible morning sickness. And I don’t mean nausea here and there, and one or two encounters with the toilet basin and last night’s dinner. I mean regularly throwing up into a tupperware container at 70mph on the m40, and becoming begrudgingly reacquainted with my breakfast – every single day. I can liken the misery only to waking up with the worst hangover of your life every single day, but without the reassuringly warm memories of the previous night’s tequila and hilarity. Whilst no-one enjoys a hangover, I can get on board if it’s the direct result of a really, really good time. When it’s the consequence of an episode of Grey’s Anatomy and a 10pm bed-time, that’s not on.
Anyway, after the morning sickness finally subsided, my morning routine became necessarily very finely tuned. I have rules, and if said rules are broken, it’s game over. The two most important rules are drinking a glass of iced apple juice (watered down with one part water to two parts juice), and eating breakfast within an hour of being awake. So this morning, with time being of the essence, I opted for a toasted pop-tart for the journey. I toasted it until it was golden brown, and on my way out of the door, failing to find any foil, popped it into a sandwich bag, which I wrapped around it twice to ensure it didn’t fall out into my baby pink Kate Spade handbag, which after last week’s blueberry muffin ‘incident’, really couldn’t handle another berry stain! (The pop-tart of choice, by the way, was strawberry sensation).
As I joined the M40, I was feeling fairly smug. Pop-tart still safely encased in said sandwich bag, I had my favourite song of the moment (Kodaline’s ‘The One’ if you’re interested) blasting, and I was right on time to be at my desk to sneak in an hour of Guardian journalism before my 9-5.
Still so far so good right? Wrong. It was time to tuck into the sugary goodness, and as I attempt to open the sandwich bag, I realised the error of my ways. That perfectly toasted pop-tart was retaining an impressive amount of heat, and when put in contact with a plastic sandwich bag, the said ‘container’ had created a vacuum around the tart, making it harder to break out than (the delicious) Lincoln Burrows in Prison Break.
The intensity of the suction that this plastic had somehow created around my pop-tart was miraculous – or at least it would have been had I not been so enraged at my inability to access my breakfast. I was pregnant and hungry, and that is scientifically proven to be one hundred times worse than just being hungry**.
For a while – probably the entire length of the M40 – I wrestled with the increasingly sticky situation. I tried everything…the quick yank, the slow peel, the shake…but rather than releasing my breakfast, the sandwich bag simply started to destroy its hostage, as it was reduced to a broken, crumbly, jammy, explosive mess. Even if I had been able to break in, it was too late, my breakfast was dead. Lincoln Burrows would face the electric chair before I got to it. But unlike in Prison Break, there is no happy ending to this story.
As fate would have it, the roads acted to co-conspire with the sandwich bag, and throw another spanner in the works – in the form of an insane three hour and five minute commute. Furthermore, to punish me for denying him/her of the pop-tart, Little Tiny Treacle started stamping on my bladder. Throw me a bone, Little Tiny. As my brother likes to say, sometimes you’re the statue, sometimes you’re the pigeon. Today I was, without doubt, the statue.
At some point along the M4, I found an Emergency Bounty in my handbag, intended for my inevitable 3pm sugar craving, and I had no choice but to eat it, for breakfast. You did this, sandwich bag, you drove me to this unacceptable act, you left me no choice. I suppose at least a Bounty is technically fruit?
You know the old adage ‘Never get between a pregnant woman and her….’ This can apply to anything really – sleep, chocolate, bubble bath – but in this tale, it’s all about the pop-tart. It’s a dark day.
**Scientifically proven by me, Fats and Stel.