Monday, 7 July 2014


Yesterday, as I walked along a path way from a Devon beach with an old buddy, discussing the fact we are now, officially middle aged (as much as that horrifies me, it is in fact true) he laughed and said, 'it doesn't get better than this.' I was squelching along, sand forming a small ridge in my birkenstocks, a wetsuit clinging to every curve and seawater dripping from by bedraggled locks onto my sunburnt face and I realised he was completely right.

We'd arrived on Friday night, to the inevitable rain that always accompanies any type of vacation on UK soil. The house we were staying at was the type that you pick out online 'incase I win the lottery.' Airy, spacious, huge kitchen replete with an island as big as my own kitchen at home - with massive sofas, tonnes of windows and stylishly simple white walls dotted with fabulous art. 7 adults, 8 kids and still it felt massively roomy. I honestly wished never to leave. The garden led to treehouses, barns filled with a play stage, table tennis table and a disco glitter ball, and rolling hills. Utterly peaceful, blissfully quiet. I barely saw my kids as ran around, playing football and cricket and chess and feeding the two happy as larry pigs who grunted around the place. Sproglette fell in love with my old schoolmate's youngest son and for our entire stay one was never seen without the other following close behind. She sobbed her heart out when she left him, despite the fact she was calling him 'that boy' rather than his name throughout the stay. I guess she was playing the 'treat 'em mean' game...

Anyway, it was a weekend filled with sunshine and beer, cold rose and magnificent feasts, laughter, games and sea air. There was a moment when I was in the sea, jumping as the thick waves rolled in carrying me up and under, and I looked up at the sky and thanked whoever was there - for my blessings. As clichéd as it sounds, I felt at my happiest. Husband says I am always at my happiest when I am with my old school muckers and their other halves. The history, the ease, the comfort.

Yesterday had started with sunshine, then segued into stormy rain and still, in true Brit fashion - we all headed to the beach. One mate said, 'it will get worse before it gets better' - his prediction for all in life. He was damn well right - by the time we got to the beach - the sun split the skies. My daughter dug up half the beach, my son messed about in the sea. My friends kids - 3 Aussies, braved the cold sea with boogie boards and wet suits. Then we all headed for sunday roasts and the Wimbeldon final on tv. As we went to leave, my son was glum, his sweet face set, his big eyes watery. He desperately wanted to stay. Sproglette had tears tripping down her face as she refused to hug her new boyfriend goodbye - I assume in denial at the enforced separation. My other friend's youngest son came over to give me a pirate hug - one that squeezes you so tightly, it is like they will never let go. In that moment, with tears spilling out my own eyes, it was exactly what I needed.


No comments: