Where, far from the noise of smoke and town,
I watch the twilight falling brown
It’s almost unbelievable. 11 whole days have passed since I last imparted the jumbled words stored in my grey matter and laid them to rest on these worthless pages in an html stylee.
I will try to summarise, pausing only to highlight the important bits.
Tuesday 17th July, Joseph performs a Maori song and dance with his classmates, brilliantly choreographed by his teacher (see previous post). I must say he looked very handsome dressed all in black and his face painted a la Maori warrior.
Thursday 19th July, Joseph’s first sports day. He came second in two races; the sprint and the ‘balance a rubber hoop on your head’. He also won the ‘clench a bean bag between your knees’ race and I can honestly say, I will never forget the look on his face when he realised he had won.
Saturday 21st July, set off for Portsmouth to catch our ferry to the Isle of Wight. I must pause here to say very clearly that the ISLE OF WIGHT IS FANTASTIC!
Seriously, it is an amazing island and if you have children, it is a must see place. Actually, if you don’t have children it is a must see place, there is so much to do.
Again, I will try to summarise.
Arrive at wonderful accommodation, dump belongings and stroll to nearest public house to sample food and award winning Ventnor Golden bitter made with water from the St. Boniface spring; honestly.
Sunday; beach combing in the morning, lunch and afternoon lying on a sandy beach in the afternoon. Listened to torrential rain in the night.
Monday; wake to continuing torrential rain, take the beautiful coastal drive in order to visit Dinosaur Isle then on to the recommended Crab and Lobster for the most amazing lobster soup and sandwich of, erm, crab and lobster, all the while ignoring the very persistent, very heavy rain.
Tuesday; Beautiful sunshine, hit the beach to be joined by our chums from Wilton, Salisbury, lunch at the Sun Inn, drive back to the Needles where Joseph passed his driving test (!), back to the accommodation for a swim.
Wednesday; to the famous Blackgang Chine, a theme park on a decent scale, roller-coasters, water-coasters, slightly “dangerous-when-wet” slides, then drive to Warren Farm for the most amazing cream tea ever.
Thursday; to the model village at Godshill, the pottery shop, not to do pottery but to have a beef burger, 100% pure beef, locally reared with wonderful onion relish, to Rossiters vineyards to buy some English wine (yet to taste, watch this space), back to the Needles to make a sculpture made of coloured sand, watch a sweet making demonstration (I had to support M to keep her from fainting as they poured the sugar in), home for a swim where Joseph amazed us by swimming unaided. Well, treading water is closer to the truth but no matter, he was doing it by himself – well done Poops - and home for a delicious curry and a glass of rioja.
Friday; Ventnor Botanic gardens which are amazing (even for a garden), almost ran out of fuel in the middle of nowhere followed by …..
(pause for nostalgic bit)
an incredible lunch at the Wight Mouse Inn. Steak and Tanglefoot Pie with vegetables. This lunch alone was worth the journey to the island.
Back to Blackgang Chine (pay once, re-visit on another day) for an hour on the roller-coaster at Joseph’s request then home to pack.
Saturday; to the Garlic farm (more interesting and beautiful than it sounds), lunch next to the ferry port then across the water and the drive home.
Now that, was a busy and fun week; I highly recommend a trip there.