So many things will inevitably change once you have children and last week I was witness to the end of yet another era and the start of a new one, the family holiday.
We had booked a week in Ibiza, sunshine, sandy beaches, relaxing by the pool. A gentle stroll into town of an evening, dinner followed by a few drinks. That was how I fondly remembered a 'holiday', however I discovered, as I have so many times over the last two years, that a lot changes once you bring a child into the mix.
So there was some sunshine, mixed in with a little rain, just to really annoy all three of us and help in our new found loathing for Spain and it's lack of rainy day activities. Sandy beaches, check, however on being taken for a paddle in the sea my daughter's response was and I quote 'yucky' and the beach although lovely for adults, adults with the luxury of hours of child-free time to while away lying on a sun-bed soaking up the rays or reading a book, does not quite work the same when you have a toddler with the attention-span of a gold-fish. A toddler who very quickly tired of building sand castle and moved on to a much more entertaining game of moaning whilst chucking sand around, inter-spaced with spates of running off at a surprisingly fast speeds (my daughter can really shift it when the choice is hers and not me asking her to move a bit quicker because as usual we are late for the doctors, the dentist, nursery, a play date etc...).
Relaxing by the pool...NO. Standing waist high in freezing cold water, whilst your daughter splashes you or pours water over you. Endlessly pulling her around in an inflatable dog, constantly berating her for taking other children's toys and for not sharing her toys with said other children. The constant rounds of sun-cream application, that are met everytime with utter indignation from your two year old daughter, her screaming and relentless attempts to run away from you so that you end up with one really well sun blocked arm and that's about it.
Gentle stroll into town, hmmm, well yes maybe but only after you have once again endured the 'BABY DISCO' with Spanish renditions of such classics as 'Agadoo' and 'I am the Music Man'. Once in town, you watch as your daughter goes around and around and around and around on the little fairground train actually, sadly, quite possibly the highlight of her holiday. Dinner, forget it, you have already had dinner about two hours ago in a restaurant full of other families, all kids screaming together.
Drinking...Now there is the one pleasure that I can say Gavin and I both enduldged in a little on holiday. Because eventually, come nine o'clock when it is time for madam to go to bed, confined to your room, the only options you really have are to go to sleep yourself (which trust me was actually really quite appealing to both of us) or sit on the balcony and drink a few beers and attempt to have something resembling an adult converstation.
So all that coupled with a vomiting episode on the coach transfer and a two and half hour delay on our way home, this holiday was not quite holidaying as I so fondly remembered it. On the bright side I have a pretty good overall tan from all the moving around I did and I can honestly say that I now know all the words to the disco version of 'Head Shoulders Knees and Toes'. Hell before Ibiza I never even knew there was a disco version of Head Shoulders Knees and Toes', just goes to show you learn something new everyday!
In truth I know I paint a pretty grim picture and I think it may take Gavin and I at least another week to get over our 'family' holiday but we had our moments, we had some sunshine and quite a lot of laughter. Crazy rainy day fun with Bobby the 'Spy' Bear and the attack of the giant killer balloon, where mummy, posing as Bobby's right hand man (woman) got to beat daddy to death with a large pillow, daddy of course being the henchman of the evil giant killer balloon, ahhh what fun! Well Emily enjoyed it and that is what counts. Even if she did cry when she though mummy had actually killed daddy for real...opps!