Aaand we’re back!
Thursday, August 2
In the morning we contemplated the vast variety of marine life in the rock pools. Much more interesting than it sounds. Fortified by our quiet morning, we spent the afternoon flying through the trees on zip wires. This was a qualified success. The boys loved it and proceeded around slowly and carefully accompanied by their parents.
There was only one humiliating moment when a man had to get up a ladder and unhook a child. There was also, I suppose, the moment when I hung in mid-air saying “Pull me in!” while Mr. Waffle took a video on the phone and my two gallant 6 year olds pulled with all their might . It was less successful for herself who zipped around the entire course while the remainder of her family got from tree one to tree two. She was a bit small for the next course up and was therefore slightly bored and cranky. To cheer her up we went to the supermarket afterwards which they all loved. Your point?
Friday, August 3
On the way back from the zipline I managed to impale the car on a curb and pull of the plastic covering between it and the motor so kind Mr. Waffle spent the morning getting it replaced in the local garage. The children returned to pony camp on Friday afternoon but, alas, signs were that Daniel was going for the last time and under sufferance. Mr. Waffle and I escaped to Quimper.
Saturday, August 4
Did you know that the Princess was somewhat allergic to mosquito bites? That knowledge came to us rather spectacularly at her uncle and aunt’s wedding in Sicily when she was 18 months old. And did we bring anti-mosquito cream with us to France despite an extensive supply in the medicine cupboard at home? That would be a no. On Saturday morning the Princess woke up with a badly swollen hand having sustained a number of bites on the previous two nights. We took her to the chemist who said that she would have to see a doctor. The chemist then phoned the doctor and made the appointment. She went around and was seen immediately [wait time in Dublin invariably one hour regardless of when appointment made]. The French doctor was lovely I am informed by herself and her father [ I feel compelled to add that my own GP is perfectly pleasant also]. As she had an exciting red line up her arm, the doctor diagnosed inflammation of the lymph nodes and a course of antibiotics. Her first. Much excitement. Cost of this appointment? €23. Cost of appointment with my GP in Dublin? €60. Just saying. I was, of course, keen to take a picture of her injuries but she said suspiciously, “You’ll put in on your blog, won’t you?” and refused offering me the, frankly poor, substitute of a picture of her medicine.
In the afternoon, we went for a walk in the forest. I’m not terribly fond of forest walks myself [yes, I know, heresy] but the others all enjoyed it.
And we did get to see lots of enormous orange slugs which, you know, made for interest.
Later on we went to the beach at Le Pouldu which was not as attractive as this picture makes it look but it was my warmest and waviest swim of the summer so I think of it with some fondness.
Sunday, August 5
To the sound of squeals of protest, I made them all go to mass. The whole experience was slightly medieval. I believe that the length of mass is indirectly related to religious fervour. The longer the mass, the weaker the religion. This was a long mass. As always, the few French children in attendance were impeccably dressed and perfectly behaved. A small boy was relegated by his mother to a pew at the back of the church for an offence which was utterly imperceptible to both Mr. Waffle and me. Our children were fine all things considered. This included a young woman who galloped around the church making odd noises and occasionally knelt at the back (near us) on a plastic bag while singing. A middle aged lady caught her and hugged her from time to time but it was unclear whether she was minding her or just a kindly neighbour. The whole thing was slightly surreal. Particularly in France where, in general, mentally handicapped adults seem to be so well looked after.
To recover, we took ourselves to Concarneau again. This was a considerably more successful expedition than the previous trip into the walled town. There was a mock medieval joust where Ange Albert le Bon fought Sinistre de Malmort [go on, guess the likely winner].
I thought it would be actors who knew a bit about horse-riding but in fact it was riders who knew a bit about acting and it was surprisingly enjoyable.
And then we toured the ramparts until it was time to go home for tea. All very satisfactory though somewhat crowded. See cunning pictures which give the, entirely false, impression that we had the place to ourselves.
Lads, this is only the end of the first week. How much more of this can we all take?