As children our holidays were always in Britain. There were certain things that were compulsory in order to make a memorable trip away.
1. Cooked breakfasts. Always a great start to the day
2. At least one minor injury or illness. We’ve had thumbs shut in car doors, normal toast being accidentally fed to the coeliac of the family, an iron pole thrown at my head by a brother who also got a bad headache from sniffing a dead worm.. you know who you are!
3. Lugging huge amounts of stuff miles across a beach in order to get a quiet spot.
4. Wearing shorts, even when it is not really quite shorts temperature. But the sun is out, so that is all that counts.
5. Take jumper off, put jumper on and repeat every time the sun goes in or out.
6. Picnics in a car park
7. A pick and mix bag of rain. Fine rain, sheeting rain, sideways rain, big fat rain and heavy drizzle. To name but a few.
8. Illusive sunshine, resulting in a mad dash for the beach
9. Following a tiny piece of blue sky for at least forty minutes, before giving in and finding a car park in order to re-group and actually look at the map.
10. Fish and chips at least once, possibly even twice ;-)
11. A steam train. There’s always a steam train
So last week we were in beautiful North Norfolk with the Grandparents.
My Father in-laws awesome cooked breakfasts (second breakfast as my children like to call them) were pretty much compulsory most days, .
The minor injury was all mine this year. My husband managed to bring the car boot down on my nose. How I managed not to scream profanities in front of my in-laws I will never know. Instead I petulantly threw a packet of hand wipes into the boot and loudly accused my husband of not being able to put his shoes on like a normal person (don’t ask).
I spent our journey to the beach pouting and holding an ice pack to my face, fully expecting two black eyes, but disappointingly getting just a slightly sunburnt nose.
On a day when the weather was particularly bad featuring with every type of rain from the pick and mix bag, we decided to take the children to the local splash pool.
Aiming to keep things quick and simple, we put our swimming costumes on under our clothes and got in the car. However on arrival in the pouring, big, fat rain we found that the que outside was at least 30 strong. Much to the disappointment of the children we decided that it was not worth waiting for, what was likely to be a crowded and disappointing experience.
So off we headed in search of blue sky, or at least a let up in the rain.
No such luck.
We ended up sitting in a National Trust car park watching the rain hammer down on the windscreen.
I realised that a full undressing would be necessary for Liv and I when we next needed the little ladies room. We still had our swimmers on.
So there was no picnic in a car park this year. Although a full family wardrobe change in the car thoroughly makes up for it.
We are now blacklisted by the National Trust.
Lastly we managed the obligatory train ride . Taking a half hour, open top journey from Wells to Walsingham.
Train rides are very family friendly. All children love a train ride. So it is a slightly surprising thing that such a family friendly attraction should have such an un-child friendly destination.
Walsingham is a very pretty and interesting place. A Mecca for pilgrims. But child friendly it is not.
It is an incredibly quiet village with very little to it, other than relic shops and one tea room with very suspect hygiene levels.
Also, on studying a macabre sculpture of an angel grinding his sandal into the face of a demon, my daughter started asking very philosophical questions about the nature of the Devil.
We managed a couple of very sunny days at the beach where the children ventured waist deep in the sea. Rather them than me!
My daughter buried a frisby and then forgot about it, until we got home.
We created a three-piece suite out of sand including foot stall for the children to eat their lunch from.
The men burnt their feet.
The females had mastered the use of sun cream and so women and children left the beach unscathed.
I think we did well and managed to tick most of the things on the list.
We all had a wonderful time and made many fond memories.
I especially enjoyed my father in-laws extra strong gin and tonics at the end of every day ;-)