We crossed the Channel, arriving at 10 p.m. at Poole. It takes only 20 minutes to reach home where we find the Cholseys are installed for what promises to be a fun weekend. As I stand at the sink emptying stale water away, Sam appears noiselessly at my side and I jump out of my skin when he whispers “Hallo Granny”!
The next morning we have a gentle start because the four school-children are beginning to see the benefits of not leaping out of bed at crack of dawn to disturb sleeping adults. I coast gently into the day, aided by a cup of tea and chill for a while in bed with Joel, Charlie and Dragonvale;) After a breakfast of croissants and pain au chocolat a beach plan is proposed – we will drive to Ringstead Bay where there is easy parking and quick access to the beach. There are lots of people already there when we arrive and for the next three hours we enjoy some boating in the stretch of water between the shore and the narrow reef which is exposed as the tide goes down. I wade out with Charlie in the small inflatable to supervise and by the time I realise the water is beyond my midriff I feel very much like a swim. How delightful it was – the first of the year. I didn’t even manage a sea swim in 2012!
We have pastries and biscuits and flasks of hot tea and coffee to tide us over until we get back to WK. There Claire cooks sausages and chicken on the BBQ and I prepare some salad and pull out a kilo of crevettes roses from the fridge. We finish with a Tarte Normande. In the evening I play Newmarket with the children. I have developed a great fondness for playing cards and Newmarket is straightforward and fun with the ‘betting’ element for which we use little cowry shells.
On Sunday we are going to rendez-vous with Barns, Lukie and Wolfie in the New Forest for a 4pmish picnic. So a late brunch is in order and before we know it, it is time to compile our picnic, load up and set out. We find the horsebox without difficulty and Barns and co turn up a few minutes later, he on his bike and Lukie on Wolfie. We picnic in a shady dell then wend our separate ways.
We love having the Cholseys – they are such good value – and we love them all.