In a bid to enrich the Brats’ lives with even more culture, Arabic and flute lessons not being anywhere near sufficient , American Mom has signed them up for Shakespearean Summer Camp. Her interest in Shakespeare increased dramatically after she saw Benedict Cumberbatch as Hamlet. For four weeks of the school holiday all three Brats are deposited daily in the party room at the Dorchester. The Eldest, whose protesting was the most vociferous to begin with, seems to have done a U turn and taken to the course with astonishing enthusiasm.
‘He’s in love with Titania,’ the Middle One assures me. ‘Which is all wrong because he’s Prospero and they’re not even in the same play, let alone the same fairy kingdom.’
She does have a point.
The Eldest meets Titania in the lobby between scenes and they spend all of lunch break testing each other on their lines. I’m impressed by the practicality of the arrangement.
When taking time off from the Bard the Brats’ latest obsession is the neighbour’s new cat. The two households are embroiled in an unofficial ownership battle over the spoilt feline. It is cleverly enjoying the attention showered on it from both sides of the fence and is incredibly skilled at playing the families off against each other.
‘But he likes us better,’ reasons the Small One as I deliver the cat back to its rightful home for the third time this week.
‘And our house is nicer,’ he says loudly, as I open the door to the neighbours’ supposedly inferior house.
I apologise profusely for the cat-theft as well as the insults but the damage is already done, it seems. American Mom will most certainly be struck off the Christmas card list. Which, incidentally, she won’t mind at all, as she doesn’t do Christmas cards. It’ll be one less potential recipient to have to pretend to feel guilty about.
The Middle One has enjoyed the Summer Camp so much that she’s decided she wants to be an actor when she grows up. By which she means she wants to go to performance school next year. American Mom has sourced one of the cast of a recent Channel Four series and RADA graduate to take on the role of drama tutor. One of her most challenging roles to date, I’d imagine. The pair spend every spare second in the garden following what appears to be an interpretative variation on Yoga, with less spirituality and more embodying animals. I wonder if this is specific to the audition process for London performance arts schools or whether the Middle One is the unfortunate subject of an elaborate practical joke. In fairness, the two scenarios are one and the same as far I’m concerned.