Holidays to the seaside are weird and wonderful things.
On one hand you can spend hours on the beach staring out into the great blue beyond, marveling at the sheer vastness of the world. On the other hand you are charged greatly inflated prices for ice cream, fish and chips, and beach towels that look and feel like they should have come from the B&Q woodwork section but are priced like they came from John Lewis! And all of this is sold to you by former cockney cabbies or Eastern Europeans (“Hello my friend”) who don’t understand the term “overpriced piece of crap”.
Conversely, holidays with young children are simply a never ending exercise in vigilance…
We have just returned from a long weekend away visiting a friend on the south coast with our two darling cherubs. Nothing I have ever done before could have prepared me for the experience of #1 running amok in a strange house (where some rooms are off limits for very god reasons: breakables, sensitive documents, treasured family photos, etc), hiding in closets, chasing the cat, climbing out of the cat flap, throwing toys, throwing food, throwing tantrums, and all of this while I am busy keeping track of what strange and interesting objects #2 has just found to put in her mouth!
Leaving the house and taking the two minute walk to the beach was just about the strangest experience of them all. There was #1 practicing the rules that Nanny taught him and standing off to the very edge of the pavement to wait while cyclists pass by…in the middle of the road. There were also occasional airborne sights: micro-lights, sailboarders, WW2 fighter planes performing loops and barrel rolls and Immelmans. And then there were seagulls…
Arriving at the beach on day one, Cherub #1 immediately took off towards the surf as fast as his admittedly long legs would carry him. Darling Wife and I figured he’d stop before he got to the water. But of course he didn’t, and in he went, fully clothed, shrieking with delight before promptly sitting down in the surf. He loved it! He also found out why we gave him all the warnings about not drinking the sea water!
Needless to say Darling Wife and I are glad that he is not perturbed by the sea, unlike so many other children. We joke that #1 is fearless, and I suppose that is a good thing, but it also means we have to be so much more aware of our surroundings. We have to be constantly double checking and triple checking to see what he is up to, because he seems to notice EVERYTHING and he wants to have/hold/touch/taste/break EVERYTHING! I mean EVERYTHING!!!
Sadly, we are now home, and all that is left is for us to again thank our friend and hostess for giving us the opportunity to have our first weekend away since March 2010. The break may be over, but we will fondly reminisce about this, our children’s first holiday!
Yesterday, I awoke to the sound of roaring waves crashing against the shore. Today I awoke to the sound of roaring engines traversing the A10 and the sound of #1 crashing his books against the head of his cot…
Home Sweet Home!