It has begun; the vacuum of time and space that is The Six Weeks Holidays (dun-dun-DUNNNNNNN!) We're now into the second week, and we're all still alive and relatively sane so that's a bonus. The Husband and I are taking time off on alternate weeks to make sure we don't use all our holiday entitlement up. Last week was my turn to spend a small fortune entertaining them and being referee to the fights over Lego theft and under-the-table-kicking matches. This week it's The Husbands turn. He's already taken them on a three day holiday to Essex where they breakfasted on bagels and slept in bunkbeds (how can I ever compete eh?).
I finished work early today and, determined to make the most of our family time, we took the Childbeasts swimming. They were both ridiculously excited on the way there - even Charlie, because he hadn't remembered at that point that he hates it. Of course, as soon as the thrill of wearing his Spiderman armbands had worn off (just as he got to the edge of the pool) that was it - he wanted to get out before he'd got in. There was a good hour of shrieking, clinging on with fingernails embedded deep into parental flesh, and us repeating "No, we're not getting out" several hundred times before we finally managed to convince him this was fun and prise him off. The Daughter didn't aid matters by following him around showering him with a yellow toy watering can, although it did help to wash the snot off his face; every cloud and all that. But as soon as he was released into the water, that was it. With about 20 minutes to go before the pool closed, he decided he did like it after all and was off into the water with his teddy bear shaped float, splashing the bejesus out of everyone. We should have expected it really, little animal that he is, but our boy decided to make sure he showed us up before we left by pootling over to a little boy and his dad and announcing "I trumped I did!" in a delighted voice. I also made a bit of a tit of myself by climbing aboard a large foam horse and managing to stay on for about 2 seconds before flailing back into the water like a duck on ice.
Now, as it to be expected, you see some sights in public swimming baths and today was no let down. In the pool I spotted a woman with her eyebrow pierced. Nothing out of the ordinary there I hear you say. Except for her having a piece of jewellery meant for belly button piercings through the hole in her eyebrow. An enormous blingy crystal poked her in the eye every time she blinked, like a ridiculous mobile chandelier. And the lifeguard watching over the teaching pool was so colossally overweight and gormless, he didn't look as though he could save a fart in a jam jar. I looked at him and wondered if he'd passed his lifeguarding tests before or after he ate all the pies? Although I suppose in the event of an emergency we could all have clambered aboard his tummy and rowed to shore.
So from events thus far I can conclude several things. That I am too old (and sober) to be goating about on foam horses. That some body jewellery really is not interchangeable. And that I will end up having to sell my remaining kidney to fund my children's entertainment before the holidays are out. For all others who are on their way to a stress/child induced stomach ulcer - hang in there, only five weeks left to go!