Chapter 12 – iCandy peach Blossom Twin Buggy

The iCandy Peach Blossom Twin offer parents outstanding flexibility when it comes to a double mode of transport. Still maintaining the modern sleek curves, stunning fabrics and simplistic styling, this revolutionary new stroller caters for all. The Blossom Twin, well, it just speaks for itself.. Go Twins! You can even take the option of upgrading your iCandy peach from a single mode to a double mode saving you the expense of an all new twin product.

All the features remain the same as the iCandy peach from the easy one hand fold to the smooth manoeuvrability. Uniquely, the peach blossom twin can be used in single stroller mode. The flexibility far outweighs most existing double modes, particularly the option of having your new born baby facing you in the infant carrier car seat whilst your inquisitive toddler absorbs the wonderful world facing forward.

Blossoming with your family…

Why buy me?

Unique one hand fold mechanism, compact folded size similar to the single stroller

Carrycots suitable for overnight sleeping with a ventilated mattress (sold separately)

Lightweight, corrosion-resistant aluminium chassis weighing only 7.9kgs (excluding wheels and shopping basket)

Carrycots suitable from birth until the child is able to sit unaided

Unique (pop-up) one hand seat/carrycot removal

Adjustable leg rest on upper seat unit only

Independent raincovers included

Two year manufacturing warranty. 6 months for carrycots

Unique multi-mode tandem travel system

Accommodates two rearward facing infant carrier car seats for optimum parent child interaction

Swivelling or fixed front lockable wheels

Large, low profile, durable, no puncture cushioned rear tyres
Soft touch comfy grip handle

Extra large shopping basket

Free-standing chassis when folded

Suitable from birth, with compact carrycots (included)/infant carrier car seats (sold separately)
Multiple interchangeable combinations to suit all ages of children (up to 3yrs)
Seat units suitable from 6 months
All round suspension
Fully independently reclining seats in forward facing mode with 2 positions each
Both seats have adjustable hoods with side viewing panels

For a second, you think he knows,his eyes surprisingly bright in a face seamed and wrinkled, look straight at you and you nearly crumple, fall at his feet, confess all, but then a cyclist, overweight, red faced, sweaty cuts between you and you gather yourself and the elderly man and his tartan shopping trolley are lost in the crowd of shoppers.

You didnt plan this,not exactly, but the hunger has been growing in you for months now and you have never been good at hunger.
“Greedy” your mother would say “Just plain greedy” when she came home to find you eating the last slice of bread, the single remaining iced bun,almost but not quite hidden at the back of the cupboard. She, happpy to survive on a diet of Rothmans and weak tea would look at you, sprawled on the sofa, nightie on at 5pm and shudder, very, very slightly. She never understood the hunger, the emptyness,the terrible need for sugar, cake, biscuits, sweets, anything that would fill the gnawing ache in your belly.

You can never remember feeling full, satisfied,there has always been room for more and when she tried to police your food, limit your eating, as you got older and larger, you can remember so,so clealry the emptyness, the actual pain of a stomach growling for food.

At twelve,you weighed twelve stone,at fourteen almost fifteen stone.

Junior school had been almost bearable, yes you were bigger, bonnny, well built, sturdy, but the other children had not yet learnt to be unkind and there were dinnner ladies,who seemed to recognise the constant ache of hunger and offered second and even third helpings of your favourite puddings. The lessons were easy and you floated along in your slightly larger than average gingham printed summer uniform.

The summer between Junior and secondary school was the first when your mother trusted you alone at home and you discovered the joys of hot buttery toast and cereal eaten 3, 4, 5 times a day.
“Puppy fat” she said tight lipped, ignoring the daily evidence of crockey and cutlery, when she discovered that the bottle green uniform skirt, bought in July no longer fitted in August and had to be dispatched to a tiny cluttered alterations shop to be taken out. Even so, it was uncomfortably tight on the first day at big schoool.

And there, you discovered something had changed,girls had transformed over the six week haitus, wore lip gloss, skin coloured tights and were experimenting with hair styles.The pattern of feeling left behind began.

By the time you had been there two years, you were inarguably fat and had stopped trying in lessons, you reasoned that it was bad enough to be fat, but to be fat AND clever moved you from being paradoxically invisible to being a target for the really mean kids.

You loved the word fat, rolled it around your mouth, savouring its taste, it reminded you of bacon sandwiches, custard, scrambled eggs and you happily used it to describe yourself. You hated the word heavy, could feel it weighing you down, pushing you towards the ground.

Particularly worrying trend in obesity rates is that of childhood and teenage obesity.

Numerous studies have shown that overweight and obese children are likely to continue to be obese and overweight in adulthood and are therefore more at risk from a number of associated health issues such as heart disease, diabetes and stroke.

Recent statistics show that in the UK nearly 20% of 15 year-olds are obese and about 20% of 13-16 year olds are overweight.


Overweight means having a BMI of between 25-29.9 while obese people have a BMI of 30 or over. The figures for childhood obesity are continuing to rise due to a combination of poor diet and lack of physical activity.

One recent UK survey found that 25% of boys and 33% of girls in the UK, aged between two and 19 years are officially overweight or obese.

It is estimated that obesity costs the UK health service around 2 billion pounds each year and can reduce a person’s life expectancy by nine years.

Your easy acceptance of your outsider status meant that actually you weren’t, not really. You didnt get invited to the really big parties,the important sleepovers, but your peers recognised your non-combatant status and people,even boys, talked to you or rather talked out loud to themselves while you absently fished around in a family bag of Minstels for the last remaining chocolate.

By the time you left school, you knew a lot about the love lives,hopes, fears, dreams and the other stuff, the real secrets of most of Year Eleven.

Luckily,your school had been in special measure for 2 years by the time you left, so no-one pushed you too hard to go to college and you drifted home, a summer of nothing very much ahead of you.

Your mother had other ideas and having failed to curb your eating, push you to be successful at school or get a boyfriend, somehow managed to find you a job and so you drifted or lumbered, all 17 stone of you into Poundland, where they had to order a special overall from head office, but where you were surprisingly happy. It reminded you of school, people told you stuff , sometimes really strange things and you listened, all the while conscious of the little bag of something sweet, something comforting nestled in your overall pocket.

And then one day, you were 27 and 18 stone, still working at Poundland, but now a shift manager, responsible, actually just a little popular, still a non-combatant, so still everyone’s’ confidant, the over-sized shoulder to cry on, the holder of hands, the lender of tissues. you watched other peoples’ lives and wondered if yours would ever begin.

But there was always food to fill the gaps, you lived alone, a neat Barrett starter home, just far enough away from your mother to give you both the excuse to drift apart and you ate, sitting, standing, from bags still in the car, too hungry to even wait for the ritual of unpacking, food was your constant, your companion. You were never really alone when there was a chocolate tart in the fridge and then one day, the unthinkable happened.

You came home from work, legs aching, trousers chaffing slightly, wandered into the kitchen, opened the fridge and couldn’t find anything you wanted to eat, you looked inside the cupboards, rooted in the biscuit tin, even removed tubs of Ben & Jerrys ice cream from the freezer, lined them up on the work surface, but nothing, you felt something, but it wasn’t hunger.. Unsettled, you moved from room to room, unsure of what to do and finally you went to bed and slept and dreamt of babies

Hours later you woke, your arms outstretched, your face wet with tears, the hunger so strong that you can only contain it by containing yourself, so you sit, huddled into your duvet, rocking yourself in your own arms.

Now you have named this new hunger, they are everywhere, other peoples’ babies. The shop is full of them, every street seems to contain only mummies and buggies. You take any opportunity to hold them, to inhale their milky newness. Sometimes you forget to eat and lose some weight, your colleagues notice, ask questions and somehow, you didn’t plan it, didn’t mean it to happen, but somehow, Patrick [ you always liked Dirty Dancing] emerges fully formed, a boyfriend, conveniently working far away. You produce a photo, googled, but believable, not too good looking or rich or clever.

And then, one day, you tell the real lie,the big one, the one from which there is no coming back and at first it goes well, everyone in the shop is pleased, interested. You bask in the belonging, go shopping, talk about the future. You learn to ignore the tiny voice that wakes you up at night, make plans to make it all better but you cannot bear to do it and so the lie continues, gets bigger.

Which is why you are here now, pushing a shiny, new double buggy, containing two perfect twins, still sleeping, unaware of what has happened.

You didn’t plan this, didn’t plan any of this, but you were running out of time, running out of ideas. Your leave of absence is almost over, you needed a solution.

You push the pram towards the park, catch sight of yourself in a shop window, a busy mother, buggy laden with shopping. You look at the reflection and smile. It is the first time you have smiled at yourself in a mirror since you were seven years old.

At the park, you sit on a bench near the duck pond and rock the buggy gently backwards and forwards and you wait for whatever will happen and while you sit, waiting, your hand, the one not occupied with comforting the babies, finds a forgotten jelly bean in your coat pocket.

Strawberry, it melts sweetly on your tongue.

“In a ‘normal’ person, these painful experiences over a period of years can be digested and resolved by legal means through foster care and adoption,” says Dr. Stephen Reich, Director of the Forensic Psychology Group in New York City. “When these normal coping mechanisms are absent, only the naked inner need for a child is left, which must be satisfied at all costs.”

Reich attributes this behavior to a low “frustration tolerance,” explaining that an upstanding citizen who is unable to conceive but desperately wants a child would be willing to work with agencies and obtain the child through legitimate means. Of course this process can take years, and in many kidnapping cases, the impulsive longing for a child overrides any willingness to deal with the emotional and financial strains of working with a legitimate adoption or foster care agency.

According to Reich, it’s highly probable that individuals who commit crimes like that for which Pettway was sentenced on Monday have borderline personalities. But very few of them are psychotic.

“The individual who does this simply does not care how much damage is inflicted upon others, including the child, as long as her longing and desperate need to have a child is fulfilled,” says Reich,

About cathi rae

50ish teacher & aspiring writer and parent of a stroppy teenager and carer for a confused bedlington terrier and a small selection of horses who fail to shar emy dressage ambitions. Interested in contemporary fiction but find myself returning to PG Wodehouse when the chips are down View all posts by cathi rae

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