Holiday Mark V – The Moody Sat-Nav

Last night we left a note for my little girl, who wakes up before the sunshine and birds, to listen to her tablet with the headphones on, and move like a ninja. My wife and I also left some biscuits to seal the deal in the hope that Captain Chaos would not get woken early and we would all start the day in a good mood. What do you know? It worked!! Yes people, 7.45am was peaceful and serene and we all woke up feeling as fresh as a wet wipe.

After a quick swim we showered, changed and headed to a large garden with children’s play equipment and a dinosaur exhibition. I put the details into my trusty sat-nav, who has never let me down, and we set off. Little did I know that although we woke up in a good mood, my sat-nav had the hump. Twenty miles of road that was single track, no road markings in the middle, and at times I had to fold my wing mirrors in crawling along like a tractor. By the time we got near even my kids were wondering if we were lost until we pulled out of some bushes to find the gardens ahead. I will have words with my sat-nav later, but I needed caffeine. After a quick coffee and a spot of lunch, we headed out to find the dinosaurs. Instead we found a giant bull made of straw. A queue had formed and people were having their photo taken with the bull. As the queue died down, Captain Chaos started inspecting it, and we turned around to hear “A little help is needed!” with the bull at a precarious angle and about to collapse on the floor. We propped it back up, although the bull looked like it was drunk, and moved very quickly away before my credit card was asked to remedy the drunk bull.

As we went through the sunflower field Captain Chaos was busy plucking the seeds out of the sunflowers. How did I know? Well unless he had been to a health food shop he was doing very well for seeds, and behind us the sunflowers had bald spots. We advised him that he could not do that as we left the apple orchard, to turn around and find Captain Chaos munching on an apple. After checking the staff were not coming after us, we left at a pace so fast, we were overtaking other seasoned walkers without children.

I announced I needed more cake and coffee to calm my nerves and my wife said she wanted coffee cake and a diet cola. I went in and found the cake really easily, however the diet cola was a lot harder, but apparently they only offered organic diet cola. What’s the difference I hear you ask? Well as it turns out, around £2. Are you kidding me? Almost three hard earned pounds went into this small bottle of cola. I really felt the cashiers should have worn balaclavas as I was being robbed in broad daylight. Talking of daylight robbery my kids announced it was gift shop time. Oh good, more tat to line the bin with, and I was not disappointed. My kids have now coined the phrase “We need something to remember the day by.” Many times I have said I will take a photo but they claim I am old and “…just don’t get it.” Seriously though, how would you remember a trip to a gardens as close to the Garden of Eden as possible? My kids chose coloured pencils that smell, and a rocket that was seeing the dustbin within twenty fours hours, if not sooner. Yes I was a little cranky at being charged £10 for this tat, and still maintain this is a tax on parents.

We headed home and to make the day amazing, went over to the play area, to christen the new rocket. My wife promised to record the momentous occasion on my phone, as this would be five minutes of father/son bonding of sufficient quality to bring tears to your eyes in old age. I went back and my wife said watch this and showed me five minutes of her finger over the lens. Cracking, absolutely cracking, although my wife claimed it was rather technical, so I am currently looking for a mobile phone with just on and off and buttons so large you could see them from outer space. If you find that phone, please let my wife know.

After playing for a while, we headed back and I made dinner. The dinner was a hit and Captain Chaos who asked to get down and play outside. Of course son, no problems; I watched him as he tried to slip out of the window like some banger racing driver. Whoa there Racing Rick, could we not slide out of the window, but use the front door? My son agreed and after a quick play we packed the kids into bed, and left them with a good story book each. I am not expecting a lie in tomorrow, but loved today and the kids were both wearing a smile.

As I went downstairs my loving, technological wife offered to make me a coffee to make up for her iffy movie skills, and what arrived was black coffee with a dash of milk, that was enough to still make it look like black. I politely asked if we had ran out of milk, and if so I would run down the shops. Oh no we had loads apparently, and when I pointed at the cup she said, and I quote “That’s because you’re looking at it from an angle.” I studied it from above and all other angles and pointed out that I did not need a paint colour chart to see it was black with a dash of milk so small, it would need forensic examination to find it. I am currently walking funny, and have apologised to the wife wholeheartedly and the bruises had nothing to do with my total change of heart.

Night, night Dorset Dad, things do get better promise!!