May 10th, 1989
At Carl’s parents’, Surrey
I’ve decided I’m not too interested in this whole standby malarkey. Carl and I are both on ninety-minute standby, which basically means if we get called out, we have ninety minutes’ notice to get to the airport and check in. There’s no way I’d make it from home in that time, hence the reason I’m here. Carl reckons we could make it in forty-five minutes but that’s outside of rush hour.
Our imprisonment became too much this afternoon and we were very naughty and popped down to the shops for a little while. Carl’s mum stayed here just in case but of course BA didn’t ring and obviously still haven’t. Of course that could change at any minute as standby continues round the clock.
I rang home this morning.
“Hi mum, how are you?”
“Fine hen. Is that you off on a trip?”
“No, neither of us has been called out yet.”
“Well you can let me know if it changes, just so I know where you are.”
“I will. I can’t stay on the phone too long mum just in case BA are trying to get through.”
“How is Mrs Flanders?”
“She’s lovely. She’s been feeding me like there’s no tomorrow. She and Mr Flanders are really nice.”
“Make sure you thank them for letting you stay and tidy up after yourself.”
I sighed. “Of course mum.”
“And what about Carl? Is he behaving himself?”
“He’s great. We’ve been having such a good laugh together. It’s nice getting to know him better.”
“I remember you mentioning him after your first day of training.”
“He’s very easy to get along with and now that I’ve met most of his family, I can see why.”
“I’m glad to hear you’re alright. Dad was asking last night if you’d phoned.”
“I can’t stay on the phone too long mum…”
“It was scorching here yesterday, dad and I even had dinner in the garden last night.”
“We just had breakfast in the garden, but mum I can’t stay on…”
“Aye well I hope it lasts, you know how quick the weather can change.”
“Mum, has anyone been looking for me?”
“Who?” I asked.
“Stephen phoned last night. He’s a bloody scream sure he is?”
“He certainly is…”
“He was on the phone for ages.”
I was about to say, “I can’t imagine why,” but thought better of it. “Anyone else?” I asked.
“Aye, that posh lassie you did the Bermuda trip with.”
“Oh, Annabel rang? What did she want?”
“I never thought to ask her. What a voice she has, I told her she should be on the telly.”
I laughed. “She does have a very distinctive voice. I have to get off the phone mum, is there anything else?”
“Ben phoned yesterday afternoon.”
My heart leapt. “What did he say?”
“He said he’ll try and phone you this weekend.”
“Did you tell him I’m on standby and that if I get called out I…”
“Listen, I’ll let you get going. Tell Carl I’m asking for him.”
“But what else did…?”
“Just make sure you phone and let me know if you get called out.”