I’ll be honest. I really wasn’t feeling our annual holiday to Padstow this year.
We went on the last full week of the school holidays and it felt too late. Too dark. Too cold. Too wet. It was so late in the holidays, I’d almost forgotten that we hadn’t been. And I’d already had a lovely trip to Amsterdam with my husband and daughter and the boys had had their amazing Scout camp (which I’m pleased to say they’re still talking about now, because they loved it so much).
I wasn’t even sure we needed a trip to Padstow.
Plus, the kids’ behaviour in the last couple of weeks before the holiday had left a lot to be desired. I wasn’t sure I really needed the hassle of all the washing, packing and unpacking going away for a week with a family of five entails, if it just meant I was going to all that trouble to transfer the bad behaviour from home to Padstow.
As ever, my husband worked basically all the hours he would be away in the run-up to the holiday (plus a bit of the holiday too). It seems like an awful lot of pressure on him and there’s a knock-on effect on me. By the time we set off, we were both feeling the strain. The morning ended up in three of us yelling at each other and both my eldest and I saying we didn’t want to go on holiday and wanted to stay at home.
On the way down, my husband said we wouldn’t go on holiday this late again (which I totally agree with) and then that maybe this would be our last trip to Padstow. To be fair, he says that every year and we always change our minds in about January. But my daughter was horrified. Because going to Padstow is what we do. We love it. It’s like our second home. My eldest was pleased. He’s bored of Padstow. He wants to go on a ‘proper’ holiday to Greece or Spain or Egypt. Foreign holidays are cool. Other people have them, why can’t he?
So, when we arrived, we weren’t expecting much.
And when we saw the weather forecast, we weren’t even sure we would survive a week. Heavy rain some days. Light rain other days. Top temperatures of 18. Or 16. Would we even got to the beach at all?
But then something strange happened.
We started to relax and enjoy ourselves.
Despite it being our 15th consecutive year in Padstow, we found some new things to do.
The kids eased up on their arguments just a bit.
And, while there was torrential rain when we woke up for five mornings, it only lingered on a couple of days. Some days it had cleared by 8am and, shock horror, the sun came out! Temperatures may have topped 21 or 22 degrees on a couple of days.
We didn’t have to go home early.
And we didn’t get bored.
In fact, we ran out of time and ended up cramming things in at the end.
Against the odds, we’d had a good holiday. A better one than we’d had in a few years.
Padstow had really been the break we needed.
And, on the day we got home, my husband started searching for our holiday for next year. We’re definitely going back.