Awoke to the blissful smell of bacon frying. Well actually I’d been awake for about an hour but hiding in my bedroom, Internetting, safe from the ravages of kids wanting stuff. Unable to resist the siren call of cured meats any longer, got up and scoffed bacon, sausage, egg, toast and loads of black pudding which J had craftily bought knowing that as Emma is a veggie and M and G dont like it, well…
We couldn’t avoid the ‘Subtropical Swimming Paradise’ (three lies in one phrase - in fact a uriney leisure pool with water slides, think “Wet & Rancid”) any longer so the boys and I headed off down to the “village” centre. Paradise? Paradoxical more like - they sell this place as some sort of dirt-free nature junket when in fact it’s basically Alton Towers with trees. Having rattled down a series of 1997 fibreglass tubes with just enough gap between each section to stay legal whilst grating the skin off your back, I was totally knackered and beginning to remember why I always return from Center Parcs weighing less than before the trip. Fun though :)
Having burned off, indeed scraped off some calories, we summoned enough front to suggest to Emma that we deserved a pizza in the Belle Italia “italian” restaurant. Actually the grub was pretty good, and they did that little known Roman delicacy “Ripiena”. I think it’s also known as stuffed crust. Mmmmmmmmm stuffed crust. Emma had an Insalata Verde, and it was most definitely the biggest pile of green I’ve seen since Michael’s 2-year bout of snotty cold as a toddler.
The weather being a pretty good English summer day, i.e. cloudy and not actually freezing, decided to try our luck on the “lake”. Sit-on kayaks for J and M, a pedalo for me and G. I might have suggested a 2-seater kayak instead, but G wasn’t interested and anyway having nearly drowned him in Cornwall a few years back by taking him out on one of those stupid tourist-death-trap Early Learning Centre-type kayaks into the Fal estuary I thought better of it. What can go wrong with a gentle paddle on a man-made pond? Well, for one if you’re taller than 5’3’’ then trying to pedal a pedalo with a 10-year old who keeps forgetting that simply allowing your feet to go around isn’t the same as actually pedalling will displace at least two lower vertebrae. Secondly, sit-on kayaks can be easily capsized by the bow-wave generated by the staff “safety” speedboat racing to tell some other 10-year-old kid that he’s wandered too far from the rest of the sailboarding activity group. It was like the Battle of Jutland I tell ya.
J and M had to bike it back to the lodge sitting on wet arses due to the clever design of the kayaks which gathers bilge water right in the arse-sump. It’s this sort of hazard they don’t warn you about. Got back in time to listen to the Newcastle v West Ham match, won 3-0, splendid. Emma said I was actually enjoying myself on this holiday, instead of being a like an escaped mental patient like I normally am every summer - again something to do with the change of job probably. She says I am constantly active and should learn to “just be”. Just be what? Illogical. Did a Sudoku.
Ate “out” at the Lakeside “Inn”, actually quite nice because we got seats outside on the verandah overlooking the “lake”. Food was pretty standard pub grub fare (the chips in an amusing little basket that resembles... a deep fat fryer wire mesh guffaw) but tasty enough. Had some beer. Went back to the lodge, had some more beer. Match of the Day - Newcastle won 3-0 AGAIN! I could get used to this holiday thing.
Number of arguments: 0
Number of accidents: 0 not counting the wet arse incident
Anxiety level: no reading