Sunday, 4 May 2008

A Grand Day Out

We've had a day at the beach, me, my three girls, my Scottish friend and her two boys.
We were terribly eco-friendly, taking just our 7-seater Volvo, instead of spreading over two vehicles.
Daughter number one refused to go because the sea air makes vampires very huffy "and Mummy you really won't like if if I'm very angry"
Daughters two and three had busy making models and were still plastered in clay when they announced they were ready to go.
The milkman arrived, looking somewhat haggard and in need of strong coffee. I left him struggling to make coherent conversation with Darling Husband and went outside to find the inside of the car. I was amazed to find carpets on the floor and leather on the seats!! My goodness, it turned out to be blue as well! I was sure I would have enough rubbish to fill a dozen skips, yuck!
Our friends arrived all ready for a day trip. Daughter number one forgot she was in a strop and got in the car with everyone else.
We were off!
After 7 or 8 miles there was an expression of interest in throwing up from the very back. This meant a seat changeover, a sturdy plastic bag and a morale boosting chat with the other passengers that there were only a few more miles to go, well, not quite sixty miles actually.
We were off!
There was a quiet anticipation of vomit in the car and it was very pleasantly free of moaning. My friend and I sat happily in the front, enjoying the bright sunshine.
We reached roadworks on the M4, nightmare!
"Are we there yet?".....

On reaching our destination, all stomach contents intact, smiling faces, shouts of "I can see the sea!", the sun went in and it started to rain. Not to be deterred by the grim weather, the children quickly disembarked and grabbed a bag/basket each and tore down to the sand. I put on two jumpers and a jacket, bought 7 polystyrene cups of Hot Chocolates and followed suit.

The light was dramatic and beautiful, the rain stopped, the children dug holes and paddled in the rock pools. They built a huge sandcastle and got soaking wet. The tide suddenly seemed to be very close so everybody grabbed something and ran for the pebbly bits where the tide doesn't reach. "Has everybody got everything?" , we glanced around, confident we had all our belongings and legged it.

We opened our picnic, I had to confiscate the butter knife from my friend as it soon became very clear she was incapable in the spreading department, and we were soon all chomping happily on sandy sandwiches with added cheese and ham, hard boiled eggs and crisps.

We were happily munching, watching the tides swirling round the rocks we had just been sat on when daughter no. 1 shouted "Look, it's Jazzies boot!!"
There was one of her beautiful pink suede boots, floating on the incoming tide. Jazz was devastated that her boot was wet, and then even more so when she realised that she didn't have the other one. Daughter no. 1 rescued the boot, laughing at how daft her sister was. She looked around for her own boots, "OHMYGOD!! Mummy, where are my Converses??"
Another panic, we were now three items of footwear down, and had two very stroppy, upset girls on our hands demanding we left the beach immediately to buy new shoes.

I suggested we all calm down, and finish our picnic. Well what do you know, there was another pink boot floating in towards us HURRAY!! One daughter was restored to being perfect, the other now had smoke pouring from her ears and was about to spontaneously combust. The boys had wandered off along the beach in order to avoid the tantrums, the youngest one suddenly started screaming and yelling..oh, what now?? He'd found one Converse along the beach and he could see the other one trying to attach itself to a mans' foot. Brilliant!

We thought it best to leave immediately if not sooner, before any other calamity could come our way. Humour well restored and ice creams in hand we drove off, having thoroughly enjoyed our day. The journey home was speedy and stress-free, we just had to stop and fill up with Diesel on our return to Monmouth. (Have you seen how much it is??)

There is only one petrol station in Monmouth, it was packed with vehicles spilling out onto the road and there was a definite amount of stress building up because of the waiting, amongst the drivers.
The gentleman (I use that term very loosely) in front of us was in a 4x4.
He filled up with Diesel.
The car in front of him drove away leaving a nice big space (without Diesel on the pump).
We waited patiently.
The gentleman (again, loosely) locked his petrol cap (no-one does that anymore, come on!), rooted around in his vehicle for a while and then produced a petrol can.
He filled that up with Petrol.
We waited patiently.
He put the can back in his car and started to walk to pay for his fuel...I beep the horn and when he turned said, could you move up a bit so I fill up p...
"HAVE SOME PATIENCE!!" he yelled, dragged his door open and lurched his vehicle forwards.
I smiled and said "Thankyou", now I had a landrover and horse box behind me the queues were seriously building up.
I tried to put Diesel in my car, but it wouldn't work because Mr Happy had used the pump twice and they can't let you have any if two amounts are owning on one pump.
We waited patiently.
As soon as he'd started to pay I was able to start filling my car, the gentleman stamped out of the shoppy bit and shouted "See! You didn't get it any faster did you? AND, YOU could have pulled in front of me!!"
"There's no Diesel on that pump" I replied, "Dickhead!".
The man drove off, I pulled forwards out of courtesy for the next vehicle and paid for the outrageously expensive fuel politely and with terribly good humour.We laughed all the way home.
What a Grand Day out!


Potty Mummy said...

'a quiet expectation of vomit' - priceless, Frog.

Working mum said...

LOL! the best laid plans .......

Thanks for popping in to my blog. I shall definitely be back for more!
All the best WM x

Anonymous said...

They are definitely the best days, the ones to be remembered.

CJ xx

Maggie May said...

Wonderful family days out! Will stick in your mind!

GoneBackSouth said...

That day does sound great. I like a nice sandy sandwich, me.
It's good to be back ... GBS x

Tattie Weasle said...

As soon as I saw the pix I was saying WOW! Then laughing about skipping out the car and of course the expectation of vomit - always a good one at the start of a journey - problem is it's usually me unless I'm driving!

Swearing Mother said...

Where I live, if you move your car before going to the cash desk to let another driver fill up, they'll phone the police as they suspect a potential "drive-off" is in progress.

And I can tell you, it's SO embarrassing.

Her on the Hill said...

Hi Frog - thanks for dropping by my blog. Loved this one of yours! Beautiful pix - oh, how I miss the sea. Want to go there RIGHT NOW on this glorious sunny day (been a long time coming...). Your're right - yer man's a dickhead. He and I would have come to blows and I would have probably ended up crying rather than laughing - I once poured a pint of beer over a rude bitch on a ferry and it did me no good...I just got one back!

Sparx said...

Lordy, you have patience and restraint in bags!

Pig in the Kitchen said...

oh my, you were sailing close to the wind! with the boots and the dreadful man.

and the price of diesel??? At least i'm paying in euros, but it's rocketing!

Exmoorjane said...

Some lovely moments and phrases in this - love your vampire daughter and the pink boots floating along and the horror of the filling station. A Grand Day indeed.

Pig in the Kitchen said...

congrats on telegraph article frog!

Frog in the Field said...

Thank you PM.

Nice to see you Working Mum.

Crystal, you're so right.

Hello Maggie May, great to see you.

Gone Back South, you come back!! Brilliant! Put the kettle on, on second thoughts, crack open a bottle and I'll be over!

Good to hear I made you chuckle Tattie.

Swearing Mother, have I seen you on Crimewatch?

Crikey, Her on the Hill! You're scaring me, you're scaring me. Remind me to stay on your good side!

Sparx, I have no patience or restraint...just exhausted!

Pig, frogs never sail, we glide gracefully from one conundrum to another. And thanks for your congrats, you should have been there too.

Hi Exmoor Jane, thanks for your kind comments, it really was a funny day(now that I'm safely home, that is!)

Jo said...

Just read about you and your blog the Telegraph Today.

Im also a blogger, mum in Spain. Im addicted to blogging, and probably blog something everyday. I find it can be very therapeutic writing about things good and bad.

Good luck with everything

Nueva Andalucia Life

Anonymous said...

i bet the diesel guzzler was the type who leaves snitty comments in the telegraph!

Expatmum said...

Frog - congrats about your mention in the Telegraph, as well as having such a lovely place to explore with kids, despite the vomit scares.

Tattie Weasle said...

With an awful hangover and feeling rather grumpy as The Littlest was up at 5 (and I am not a morning person at the best of times) I read yesterday's Telegraph - many many congratulations! It gave me such a flip and have been running around the house squawking with glee and waking everyone up so I can say well done to you! Do you really blog out on the straw bales???

Frog in the Field said...

Hi Jo,
Thanks for dropping in, I shall grab my passport and pop over!

Hi River Girlie, gosg! don't some people vent in there! I was gobsmacked to read it all.

Hi Expat Mum, you were mentioned too! You know I had to read it again this morning, I was so shocked I was really in there.

Hi Tattie,
Poor thing! Get some isotonic lucozade into you, works wonders.
And Thanks!

Millennium Housewife said...

I didn't know there were so many mum bloggers out there! Where have I been? Languishing in cyberspace with only a mouse for company. Ahhh hello everyone.

aims said...

Just popping in to say congrats for making it into the newspaper!! And a lovely pic it was too!

You're going to hit the big time - you and all those other mommy writers they mentioned. OMG!!

Well done - well done indeed!

Anonymous said...

Fantastic blog. I laughed out loud and that takes some doing at the moment! I'd love you to pop and see my blog one day if you have time. I have found the links from yours really great, I thought I was alone in the blogging world until I read the Telegraph on Saturday - I'm so glad you were featured.

Elsie Button said...

Congrats on your article Frog! I was so excited to see you there! Great pic too!

Her on the Hill said...

Hi again Frog - I was as surprised as you to find you splattered across the Telegraph Weekend (and Family Affairs - my youngest's godmother!) Well done, and it's lovely to put a face to the name. You obviously have WiFi in deepest darkest Monmouthshire - no hay bales for me, I'm afraid, just a boring old desk!!

Ps, Don't be afraid, I have to be VERY provoked to pour expensive alcoholic drinks over strangers' heads and I'm sure I'd like you...honest!

tim relf said...

Found you via the Telegraph, too. Nice looking blog! Enjoyed reading about your experiences in made me laugh but I'm glad you're not a politician!

Frog in the Field said...

Hi Millenium Housewife!
I shall pop in when I've finished this blasted vat return.

Thanks Aims, a compliment from a pro-blogger!! I'm flattered, I think you're far more high profile than me!

Hi Melipop, so glad to have cheered your day along! I shall visit you too, must get it done...ugh!!

Hi Elsie Button, isn't it SO exciting!!

Hello HOTH!! So glad to know that, was terrified you were in the habit of wasting good alcolohol (hic!)

Hi Tim, thanks for visiting. I'm not pc enough, I know, but maybe Boris and I would hit it off?

Milla said...

Congrats Froggie! How did they find you all by the way? Jolly photo of you chortling away at your laptop, although I was a little saddened to see that you are not actually green. I'm literal like that and, as it happens, a tiny bit green, myself, too! ho ho.

Frog in the Field said...

Thanks Milla! I had to beg Tamsin Kelly to include me, huge sums have changed hands, I begged Dulwich Mum to lend me the money and have her chaffeur drop it off.

Of course I'm green, that image in the paper is black and white - honestly! Fancy not realising duh!!

Natalie and Duncan said...

Wow what a fantastic Blog! Dad sent me the article in the paper and then I jumped on! Glad to hear you are doing well and having lots of great adventures...Please say hello to the entire family for me (including little fruitcake!). Oh and Duncan of course says hello!! Love, natalie (australia) xoxo

Frog in the Field said...

Hi Natalie!!
Brilliant of you to drop by my Blog and fab to hear from you!
I've been reading your know the bit about the snoring...was that when you stayed at our house? Hmm?
The clover chain you made and hung on the beams in our kitchen is still there, so we think about you often.

Adventure Togs said...

I can really sympathise with the "Converse" panic. My eldest wore his on a litter pick yesterday and they "had" to be washed immediately!

Susanna (A Modern Mother) said...

Are we related?

Iota said...

"incapable in the spreading department" - that's not even damning with faint praise. It's just damning. Love it!