it's not paradise (2) scrubbing on the ceiling

The solution we have finally is to move the nine-year-old to George's room in the loft, where he can sleep on a mattress on the floor. Jetsada can then have the nine-year-old's room. Unfortunately for our guest, it is the smallest and room in the house - more a cupboard than a bedroom. It has beds with a desk and a chest of drawers underneath in it. Otherwise there would be no room to swing a cat.

But the arrangement one advantage. Jetsada sent me a charming e-mail this week, wishing us a happy new year and saying how much he was looking forward to staying (if only he knew, poor boy). He said that he was a fan of Liverpool Football Club, so he should the bedroom's decoration. The nine-year-old is a passionate Liverpool fan, and every inch of wall in his room is posters of Michael Owen and the rest of the team.

Jetsada will also find the house filled with Liverpool FC towels, scarves, hats, socks, shorts and T-shirts. In that respect, at least, he should find it a home from home. the rest of the decoration, my wife has plans to repaint most of the house in preparation for his arrival. As I write, she is standing on a ladder above my head, scrubbing the kitchen ceiling. Anyone would think that the Queen to stay.

I do hope that Jetsada will be happy with us, and that he will our strange food, icy weather and loud quarrels too homesick. When we signed up for the exchange scheme, I thought only about how wonderful it would be for our 13-year-old to spend a month in paradise. Now, all that I can think about is how dreadful it will be for Jetsada paradise for a month with the Kemps.