Saturday, July 30, 2011

Back from Normandy...

...and the second load of washing is in the machine. It's been a fun couple of weeks with lots to do...the first week we stayed in western Normandy and the theme was pretty focused on WWII and the D-Day landings, with a bit of early British history thrown in re. Richard Lionheart during a visit to Chateau Galliard. More later, including photos, but first it's a well earned gin and tonic before hitting my beloved bed, sorely missed this past fortnight.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Running in circles

You know the problem with taking a holiday is that enormous amount of work you have to finish beforehand to clear a couple of weeks free. Hence you've heard nothing from me in a while. That and the fact that life has been so very very busy with the end of the school year, camps, work, etc.....
Last week Niels had his annual Scouting camp, a week-long adventure with a group of 20+ other kids. With a theme of Lord of the Rings, the kids were woken at 11pm on the second night by a grey-bearded Gandalf, who beseeched them to destroy the cursed rings in the lava lakes of Mordor. The Scout leaders who are in charge of his group really out-did themselves this time, with an imaginative, non-stop series of adventures that culmiinated in the kids tossing their rings into a fiery inferno after trekking by moonlight through the forest near Lunteren. Goodness knows what the locals thought, hopefully they are used to Scouts getting up to all sorts of nocturnal adventures.
I collected him - and an enormous pile of washing - after seven sunny fun filled days and brought him home to his first shower in days and a welcome nights sleep. It brings back fond memories of my childhood when I would spend a week in the summer holidays at Kiwi Ranch, a horse riding camp near Rotorua. I'm pretty sure it doesn't exist any more but I have fond memories of riding horses up and down the hills overlooking Lake Kawau, trekking the paths through the pine forest and riding through creeks. By the end of the camp all the kids would be gaining confidence in their riding and we would race to the paddock in the morning to grab the fiestiest horses because they were the most fun. It was a Christian camp and we endured a couple of hours of 'education' in the evenings. I would have endured a month of such brain washing if it meant I could have stayed to ride the horses during the day! I even convinced my Mum to try and buy one of the horses - a pretty mare called Tosca - but her owner couldn't bear to part with her.

The only steed Niels got to ride on his camp was his trusty bike, but he had just as much fun regardless.