Ah crap, I already screwed up my resolution to post once a week.
Now you can see why things like “will learn to run 5km without death” and “try to answer the phone without fear” end up as nice ideas instead of solid accomplishments when I set goals.
We went away for a few days over Easter. I had planned on staying home by myself instead of doing the 7 hour drive with kids in tow (not that I do any driving… that wouldn’t be fun for anyone)
I don’t love long road trips.
I told J I loved them, when we started dating. you know, that time in the relationship where you put all your best cards forward and pretend you don’t actually have a draw full of slightly frayed undies?
I waxed lyrical about one day buying a Kombi; Where we would talk for hours, I would wear Ugg boots (the proper kind) and eat cheese toasties, and play Gorillaz on the radio while he drove us along the entirety of the coast of New Zealand, stopping only to sleep or maybe have a bonk in the back of the camper…
Well, okay, I thought it was a good idea at the time. But I forgot we had kids. And that my Ugg boots aren’t cute (or the proper kind) they are manky. And when we went to the West Coast on honeymoon I thought I was going to be murdered by ferals in the bush. And I don’t eat bread anymore…
I always fear he thinks I ripped him off. I spose he’s kind of justified…
But lets be real. Car trips with kids are less than romantic.
You have to provide constant snacks. And accurate E.T.As. And you can’t really talk about that time you camped out on the beach and got naked. Or high. They may have headphones in, but they will still hear that. Trust me.
But he looked so sad when I said I didn’t want to go away, and he invited two other families who don’t judge my morning holiday drinking, so I caved.
There were aspects of the trip that were really nice. The roads are still impassable up the East Coast so we had to go inland. Like, way inland. But travelling through the beech forest near Nelson (aside from the part where I wound down the windows in hope of smelling the forest and instead filled the car with brake fumes from the truck in front) was pretty spectacular.
We made it to the Sounds in just under 7 hours, and without tears (mine).
I’ve written posts about staying at this holiday home before, and what it’s like when you have a bunch of teenagers and a lot of rain. So I won’t talk about the fact it was raining.
How about I write this post the way my talented travel blogger friends do?
But the reality-version.
We arrived at the Bay in the Marlborough Sounds with the children around 7pm.
On arrival, they sort of fell out of the car like stoners in a hotbox. It’s weird how your legs just stop working after sitting for 7 hours. Apparently their arms stopped working too because they left it to us to unpack.
Our friends had arrived before us and cooked a curry. I am doing keto at the moment so I just ate bacon. *goes to insert beautiful travel photo of food* *realises there is no way to photograph a plate of bacon artistically*
It’s always nice to have a hot shower after you’ve been travelling, and this holiday home is well equipped with four showers on four separate floors.
It’s safe to say that the people that rented the house before us had a different understanding of ‘clean’ than I am generally accustomed to, so I decided to flag the shower and instead take the medication that I procured from the doctor when I told her I was afraid to fly (I’m not afraid to fly, but that’s the only way they’ll give you the really good drugs; I am however afraid of a whole host of other things when travelling, so I didn’t feel too shit about the small stretching of the facts)
In the morning, after my
wine yoga practice, I decided it would be prudent to clean the showers.
While on holiday, I love being able to use a bottle of cloudy ammonia to clean . It refreshes my lungs and central nervous system. All you really need to do is crack a window and use it to breathe out of every few minutes while you use kebab sticks to fish out wads of hair (that isn’t yours) from a drain that smells like the underside of a homeless person’s trackpants.
I know you are probably feeling really envious of this post, and I don’t blame you. Writing a travel blog is such a blessing.
It rained the whole day, but that was okay because this time we were well prepared. By well prepared, I mean each of the 6 adults had bought two weeks worth of alcohol.
We stayed for 4 days.
During the day the children played on the Xbox or went exploring (in the kitchen for food). When the sun came out they went out on the water which gave me a chance to clean floors and throw out all the food in the pantry that expired around the time I was giving birth to my youngest (who is 14).
One night the men went and
drank a lot of whisky played pool in the large room with the only fireplace, and I stayed in my room and made the most of the quiet, while the teens camped in the hallway under blankets and openly talked about every subject they would never tell a parent.
There’s nothing quite like a beautiful holiday away with friends and children. The sound of bell birds in the trees, the ocean at the doorstep, the mice running through the kitchen, and the screams of psychotic delight emanating through the house as kids motor down the hallway.
At some point one morning went into the forest to
escape take photos of things for work. It was so quiet in there.
I’m beginning to understand the appeal of hiking. And also getting lost. (I also think my once-strong extrovert game is a little bit wanting in places) All this to say that when planning a trip away with kids, check the surroundings for things like ‘bush’ and ‘forest’ and ‘coffee shop you can run to’.
All in all it was a pretty uneventful time away. Uneventful is a good thing. Trust me. Uneventful is relaxing.
Eventful means someone threw up. Or bled. Or fought, or found a dead mouse in the early stages of maggot-assisted decomposition behind the T.V cabinet.
Okay, that last one may have happened. But it was easily dealt with:
I gave my stepson a pair of vinyl gloves and walked away. (Before you judge me, yes I asked him if he would be okay to do it. Plus it’s pretty fun to throw things off the jetty. ) (the mouse, that is).
Easter holiday done and dusted (really, really dusted, like half-a-can-of-Pledge dusted) we headed back to Christchurch at 4 in the morning.
I think if you ask the kids they would say they had a great time.
If you asked me I would tell you that I will be happy to go back, once the PTSD of drain phlegm and mice cadavers has eased.
10/10 would totally recommend.