Over the weekend we had a French relative staying with us. I say 'relative' because I'm not sure what she was (other than being a person, obviously). What I mean is that I'm not sure whether she's a niece, a cousin, a second cousin even. My husband's side of the family is so big that it's almost irrelevant, as it is for this post.
What is important though, is that she works for a jeweller who makes big and beautiful rings and had come over to London to supply some of them to a very famous pop star to wear for her next video.
When she arrived at our house, having already deposited the chosen rings in London, she was armed with an array of jewellery which would have made even the fussiest of princesses happy.
As you can imagine, the girls were beside themselves with excitement, dressing up with the rings, trying each one on and posing for photographs heavily laden with jewellery.
Renée, especially, thought that this cousin and her rings were the best things ever. In fact, over the course of the weekend I had more than a few,
"Mummy, I want to be just like Clementine when I'm older."
It was kind of cute.
And when Clementine went back to Paris and left a ring brochure for each of the girls as a present, Renée was in no doubt as to what she wanted to do with it.
"Mummy, can I take it in to 'Show and Tell' please? Mummy, can I? Please?"
I didn't see why not.
"Of course you can darling."
Later that day Renée was met from school by my husband and the first thing he said as he entered the house was this,
"Apparently 'Show and Tell' went really well. Everyone loved the rings and they were looking at the brochure for so long that no one else had time to show anything. Even the teacher loved it."
I felt myself swell with happiness, imagining my little girl, the one that hasn't been that happy at school recently, so proud to show off the ring brochure in front of her friends.
"It was amazing Mummy. The book was passed round to everyone in the class and they all loved the rings."
"Yes, Papa just told me darling. I'm so glad it went well for you."
And that, I thought, was that.
Except it wasn't.
Later that afternoon, as Renée was sitting on the sofa, still turning the pages and looking through the brochure with wide eyes, while her friend Katherine, who had popped over to play, was starting to show signs of boredom, I decided to intervene.
"Darling, don't you think that maybe you've looked at that brochure a bit too much now? Katherine might be bored with it, especially since she's already seen it today at 'Show and Tell'.
Katherine looked at me, puzzled.
"But we didn't have 'Show and Tell' today."
I looked at Renée's crestfallen face as she realised that the game was up.
I was amazed.
Isn't it funny that at 5 years old, she's able to spin such a yarn that even her own Mother believes her. Or is a Mother the first one to believe?
I'm not sure whether to be impressed by her story-telling skills or annoyed that she lied to me.
Crikey, it's only slightly worrying for the future.
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