cj Sez: Today Lyrical Pens turns the spotlight on South African author and fellow Mystery Thriller Week writer Robbie Cheadle. When Robbie agreed to do a blog tour, you can be sure she didn’t expect these hurdles. Read on…
Tuesday, 17 January – the New Year starts with a bang
The insistent beeping of my alarm clock drags me from sleep. As the meaning of the beeping registers in my foggy, sleep drugged brain, I jump out of bed and make a dash across the room to turn it off. I don’t want it to wake up the boys, who can sleep late on this last morning of the school holidays. I slip on the wooden floor which has turned into a sheet of ice, and land on my backside. A splendid start to the day. Clearly the new wooden floor cleaning fluid that I had bought in great anticipation of a lovely shiny floor the week before was responsible for this ice skating rink floor. I make a mental note to get it re-cleaned with a less lethal substance prior to Hubby Dear’s great-grandmother coming for a visit on Sunday.
The time is 4.30am, and I am planning to write a post for my blog. I creep across the room and out of the bedroom door and out go all the lights. Damn! The lights have tripped for some reason. I make my way down the passage, holding on to the wall. I manage to switch off the house alarm and garden beams without incident, and feel my way along the kitchen windowsill until I find the bank of rechargeable lamps. Miracle of miracles, they are actually charged, and I have light. I find the stepladder in the kitchen cupboard and climb up to flip the switch on the electricity board. The lights flicker on, warm and bright, and immediately snap off again. I pull down all the switches on the board, re-flick the main switch and gradually start pushing all the switches up to determine which one is the problem. It is the geyser – strange, the geyser is fairly new. I leave this switch down and set about making some tea so that I can prepare the necessary blog post. I have wasted a precious 20 minutes by this time.
One hour and one blog post successfully finalised and posted later, a little note from the school communicator pops up on my screen. The note reads “All parents are reminded to please park on the main sports field when dropping off their children this morning.” What! School starts tomorrow. I open the link and check the calendar. School starts today. Freak! I stampede down the passage and wrench young Michael from sleep. “School starts today and we are running a bit late”, I yell. “Up, up, up, you have 30 minutes to get dressed, washed and eat your breakfast”.
Michael, my youngest, sweet little honey pot boy, is not known for his speed. On the contrary, Michael is a bit sloth-like in the morning and just about drives me insane. I rush about at the speed of light, packing his lunch, filling his water bottle, dragging out his as yet unlabelled stationery and chair bag and stuffing them into his book bag. I, of course, have to do this while preparing Mike’s breakfast and medication and maintaining an air of complete control and calm so as not to panic the child who is embarking on his first day of Grade 5 in the senior primary school.
In the meantime, Hubby Dear has dragged himself out of bed and staggered into the bathroom. He switches on the hot water tap at the basin to run water for shaving. Nothing happens. There is no hot water, but there is a weird burning smell. It is very strong and unpleasant. The geyser has burned out, which is why it tripped the lights. Painful but at least we now know the answer to that particular mystery. I turn my back on that little problem and leave it to Hubby Dear to sort it out.
At exactly 7.15am, Mike and I are in the car and on our way to school. We are actually on time so I am very pleased with myself even if my stomach is still churning and I can’t face anything to eat or drink, even my favourite cappuccino. I walk Michael into school as it is the first day of the new school year. He wants me to come with him as he is anxious and doesn’t know who his teacher is or what friends will be in his class this year. He also doesn’t want anyone to think that he has a Mother. That would be very uncool! He rushes ahead and zaps off into the crowd without a backward glance but with the full expectation that I will compliantly follow. Fortunately, Michael is very happy with his teacher and has lots of friends in his class so the day is looking up, and I set off on the next leg of my journey to the office. I am feeling a bit lighter and brighter.
Of course on days like this one, nothing can go right. I make good progress, and the traffic is very bearable until I get to the last suburban road leading onto the main road where my office is situated. There has been an accident. A bad accident. The cars are backed up for over thirty minutes and, as I drive past the scene which is being attended by fireman and other rescue vehicles, I see the significant amount of dirt thrown on the road to absorb the gore and also two vehicles, completely scrunched and crunched. It is a horrible sight and it puts a damper on my spirits.
I arrive at the office forty-five minutes later, four hours after I woke up and started my day, feeling distinctly subdued. At my desk with my computer booted up the real day starts and the first query of the morning pops up in my email. I sigh and get stuck in to sorting out another muddle that requires urgent attention.
cj Sez: Whew! I thought I had bad days. Robbie’s Sir Chocolate series is a collaborative effort with her two sons. There are two books currently on the market, and the third will launch in March 2017. Where to buy is listed below.
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In addition to working a full day as a senior member of her company’s Capital Markets team, Robbie Cheadle writes books for children together with her two sons, Gregory and Michael. Michael helps with ideas and making fondant illustrations, and Greg helps by filming and editing the baking videos. Works-in-progress include the rainbow fairies from Sir Chocolate and the sick ice-cream rainbow fairies story and cookbook.
The Sir Chocolate books are all about a little edible man who lives in Chocolate Land where you can eat everything even the flowers and trees. Sir Chocolate and his lady friend, Lady Sweet, have a number of adventures assisting their friends in Chocolate Land with various problems and looking for interesting ingredients for the chocolate delights they make and sell at Sir Chocolate’s Chocolatier. The illustrations in each book are made of fondant, cake and biscuits and each book also contains five simple recipes that children can bake under adult supervision.
The first two books in the series are Sir Chocolate and the strawberry cream berries story and cookbook, and Sir Chocolate and the baby cookie monster story and cookbook
The third book in the series is set to launch in March, 2017. In Sir Chocolate and the sugar dough bees story and cookbook, a greedy snail damages the flower fields and the fondant bees are in danger of starving. Join Sir Chocolate on an adventure to find the fruit drop fairies who have magic healing powers and discover how to make some of his favourite foods on the way.
The Sir Chocolate books are available at these sites (cntrl click on the site name):
You can also buy them in South Africa directly from the author by emailing Robbie Cheadle at firstname.lastname@example.org.
cj Sez: In the midst of her busy days, Robbie came all the way from South Africa to visit us—please drop her a comment and let her know you stopped by..
Okay, you-all guys keep on keeping on, and I’ll try to do the same.
Amazon Central Author Page: http://amzn.to/1NIDKC0
California Kisses—10 romance stories 99 cents Jan. 30 on Amazon https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01MS5PQAK/
Coming 2017—“Bad Day at Round Rock” a short story in The Posse, a Western anthology of tales of action, romance, mystery, myth, and truth. www.facebook.com/thepossebook.1