We had forgotten to give Jamie a travel sickness pill. Normally, we can drive at least 45 minutes without any risk of car sickness, and sometimes an hour. This journey, according to the Satnav, was 52 minutes. Trying to drive all the way without stopping would be a gamble.
We were twenty minutes into the journey when Meg said "Open Jamie's window just a tiny bit, and give him some fresh air."
Doing this would also be a risk. We both knew that Jamie likes nothing better than livening up a car journey by throwing things out of the window - his shoes, his socks, my sunglasses, the Satnav - whatever he can reach really. This is why we always have the car windows shut and the child locks on.
"Just a tiny bit then." I said. "Hold his hands while I do it - if I open it too far, you know what will happen."
So Meg held his hands, and I lightly flicked the relevant button. I need not have worried about opening it too far. I judged it right first time, and the window opened by about a centimetre. Meg released Jamie's hands, and relaxed. There was no way that anything he could reach was going to fit through that tiny crack.
Or so we thought. Jamie sat and studied the situation for a while. He made no attempt to grab anything and force it through, but he scanned round the car with his eyes, mentally calculating whether anything was going to fit. In an attempt to stay one step ahead, Meg moved everything that was less than five centimetres thick to the other side of the vehicle.
So we continued on our journey for about another minute or two. All of a sudden I heard Meg shouting behind me.
"No Jamie! Stop that! Aaaargh! You naughty boy! That was brand new!"
Startled, I looked in the rear view mirror. I saw Jamie looking back at me. There was something different about him. Wasn't he wearing a baseball cap a few minutes ago?
Yes, even though a baseball cap looks as though it is as big as your head, the truth is that you can feed the peak of the cap through a very small opening, as Jamie knew instinctively you could, and had proved. I would have thought that main body of the cap would have got stuck, but no, it did not. Perhaps the wind took it and sucked it through. It was all over in a second.
"Sorry." said Jamie. But I don't think he was.
I got the hat back eventually. We were on a busy A road, and I had to drive on a few hundred yards before finding somewhere I could stop the car, then run back down the road. There was no footpath, so I was dodging speeding cars and lorries, to rescue the cap that was sat in the middle of the road, on a white line. It was good exercise for me, and the way I see it, the fact that I could have been run over and killed, just makes life seem all the sweeter.
That's not really true, I just like to end on a positive note.
Oh, and one other positive note - the unscheduled stop broke up the journey, and Jamie did not get travel sickness after all. Hmmm ... I wonder if that was his plan all along?