Mum’s The Word - October 11, 2016

William Mellor on the beach
William Mellor on the beach
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What, why, how, where, and when?

As a journalist, it becomes second nature to ask all of these questions so every detail of a story is covered.

It’s our job – and we wouldn’t be doing it properly, or doing a story justice, if we didn’t.

But the shoe is on the other foot now William is at the toddler questioning stage and I’m being quizzed about anything and everything.

It’s like being sat on the Mastermind chair, under the spotlight – only the quiz session lasts the whole day and your specialist subject ends up being anything from “why does the sea come in and out over the beach?” to “where does the moon go?”

Every other sentence at the moment involves the words “why” or “what”?

Even menial tasks like brushing his teeth.

“Why do I need to brush my teeth?”

“Because they’ll fall out otherwise.”

Then I’ll say: “It’s time to wash your face.”


“Because it’s dirty.”


And the other day when he was shopping with his Grandma, he asked: “What’s that?”

“It’s a pizza”, she answered.


As well as lots of questions, William has also got a smart answer for anything.

“Are you going to share those cars with Mummy?,” I asked.

“No, they’re too busy,” was his well thought-out response.

And at bedtime, he’s always got an answer to delay going to sleep.

He needs a drink, a toy, a snack... and even needs to brush his teeth again.

Why, oh why, I should say in response.