Train-tastic!

>> Sunday, 2 November 2008

Yesterday lunchtime I ventured into virtually uncharted waters - for me - as a blogger. Hold on to your hats, shipmates; I met other bloggers.

It was one of those situations where you really aren't sure of the etiquette. I mean, how do you introduce yourself to individuals who you feel you know really quite well, and yet have never even spoken to over the phone before, let alone met in person? The temptation to say "Hi, I'm Potty Mummy. What's your handle?" in a 1980's CB radio styley was almost overwhelming.

Luckily for me there was one other person there whom I had met before - Frog in the Field - who took the initiative and saved me from making inappropriate comments in trucker-speak, introducing me to 21st Century Mummy, Jo Beaufoix, A Modern Mother and The Thames Valley Mums.

And no, Millenium Housewife, they don't all have two heads. We were a surprisingly ordinary bunch actually, though I think that may have had to do with the fact that we had an average of 2.5 children apiece with us; any thoughts of glamming up (at least for me) disappeared in the mess of making it into the middle of town in one piece complete with all our offspring, nappy bags, mobile phones, colouring pens, boot heels and kitchen sinks...

This gathering was courtesy of Ludorem, the company responsible for Chuggington, a new programme for kids currently screening on BBC2 and shortly due to be appearing on a CBeebies schedule near you. I can recommend it, even though my two boys appeared stoically unmoved by the experience yesterday, to the extent that you would think they get invited to private screenings in the Movieum every week, for chrissake. Today, though, they have spent all day talking about it, dissecting the two episodes we saw, working out who were their favourite characters - Brewster and Puffer Pete, in case you were wondering - and reliving the post-match crisps and sandwiches.

If you have young or pre-school children, check it out. The storylines seem fun and educational - without being preachy - the animation is delightful, and the character voices won't drive you crazy. But be warned; the theme tune is annoyingly catchy...

As for meeting other bloggers? I wish I had done it earlier. Any other PR companies that want to set something like this up again, count me in!

15 comments:

Iota 2 November 2008 at 22:44  

Chuggington sounds like a cross between Trumpton and Chigley and Paddington. Maybe that's deliberate. Tapping into the darkest recess of memory of 40 somethings who are now mummies.

Is there room in the market for another train world? Is everyone fed up with Thomas? Or are small boys so train-hungry that there's room in their lives for two?

Iota 2 November 2008 at 22:51  

I have just had a wave of really sad feeling wash over me. My youngest is 4 and half, will be starting school next year, and isn't interested in trains (it's a girl thing). This means that this post is really not very relevant to my life (although I did check out the website and theme tune). This is the beginning of a new era. Henceforth, new programmes for preschoolers won't be relevant to my life. That makes me sad.

Roll on the grandchildren.

(And I've been hoping for so long that Bob and Wendy would get together, and they never have, and now, if they do, I won't have an excuse to watch the episode.)

sharon 3 November 2008 at 02:06  

This really a message for iota, I saw approx 18 years of children's programmes by virtue of my status as a childminder. It was great. Of course we only watched the ones I liked ;-) Now I'm hanging out for grandchildren though!

Expat mum 3 November 2008 at 03:17  

Or you can just organise things yourself. I had a great time meeting some of the Northumberland bloggers, and perhaps next year in London I'll have more time?

nappy valley girl 3 November 2008 at 09:55  

I'm sure that lots of PRs would like to get bloggers together - after all, all marketers are after the holy grail of 'word of mouth' endorsement now, aren't they? But, as expat mum says, maybe we should organise some more informal get-togethers? I would be on for it....

Potty Mummy 3 November 2008 at 13:46  

Hi Iota, I can't speak for every small boy, but for my youngest there can never be too many trains... And don't worry, if Bob and Wendy do get together I will e-mail IMMEDIATELY. Even if it happens 10 years down the line, I will probably still be interested... (how sad is that?)

Sharon, interesting you say that. I thought my mum and dad were a little too au fait with all the characters of In the Night Garden...

EPM, you're right, of course. I should get off my backside and do it myself!

NVG, why not? How about some pre-christmas drinks? Will be over shortly to see if you have an e-mail address I can contact you on. (Now you wish you'd kept quiet, yes?)

Jonny's Mommy 3 November 2008 at 14:39  

I would love to meet up with some bloggy friends. I think that would be a blast. Nerve wracking, but awesome. I would be worried about revealing myself ... the "real" me ...the clutz, nerdy, haven't got a clue, me.

*sigh*

Jo Beaufoix 3 November 2008 at 15:22  

Greta post Potty Mummy, and it was great to meet everyone. You're right, we're all kind of normal in the one headed way, and how good twere the kids? I was seriously exopecting a Miss M explosion but that didn't happen till we got home yesterday. Hooray. :D

nappy valley girl 3 November 2008 at 18:16  

PM - that sounds like a v good idea. I am email-able on nappyvalleygirl@googlemail.com

Karen 3 November 2008 at 19:19  

LOL, love your write-up, especially the bit about the "what's your handle". We had a great day. Little T now thinks the Movieum is Chuggington. I suppose I've only got myself to blame when I kept telling him all the way on the train that we were going to see Chuggington. He's now a real fan and really looked forward to today's episode. It was a brilliant chance to meet up and I hope we'll be able to do something again :-D

Thames 3 November 2008 at 19:57  

My six-year-old took all the PR stuff into class today for "show and tell", but her teacher didn't pick her. She was passed over for a kid that brought a collection of autumn leaves!

Up for a get together.

Shall we create a Ning?

-Susanna (A Modern Mother)

Potty Mummy 3 November 2008 at 20:11  

J's Mommy, well of course you would be the only one to be nervous because the rest of us are all rocket scientist supermodels! (As in, you think that's just you?)

Jo, it was Halloween weekend. Of course they were going to explode at some point, given that most kids had eaten their own bodyweight in sugar and chocolate...(I feel a post coming on).

NVG, you're on.

Hi Karen, if my two knew there was such a thing as morning tv they would have been watching it as well. However, didn't you see me putting my hands over the Boys' ears when they were talking about the 8.45am slot? Controlling? Moi?

Susanna, first off, forgive my ignorance, but what's a Ning? And second, your daughter's primary school teacher really needs to give the autumn theme a break now. Given the weather, isn't everyone just so over the 'season of mists' stuff?

Thames 3 November 2008 at 20:25  

http://www.ning.com -- you can create your own social network in about 5 seconds, like twittermoms.com. It's a bad idea though, another time waster.

Ladies, I'm going to do a best of the British mummy bloggers carnival next week, please send me your best post http://tinyurl.com/6doadr

-Susanna (www.amodernmother.com)

Bush Mummy 4 November 2008 at 14:08  

Oooh wish I'd been there.. would love to have met you all. Have just spotted Chuggington on BBC2 so shall be checking it out.

BM x

Potty Mummy 5 November 2008 at 21:40  

BM - wear ear plugs if you don't want to be singing: Chuuuuuginton. Chugichugichugichuggington! for ever more...

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