Mr Squidge and I are taking advantage of the fact that for one whole week of the summer hols, both kids are at the same scout camp. We have four days out of that week all to ourselves! Where to go? What to see? Decisions, decisions!
Venice was the first place we looked into. But apparently it's really busy when we want to go and fiendishly expensive. Then we switched to Paris. I've never been, but it's somewhere that Mr Squidge would like to go back to, and bless him, he wants to take me with him.
"Eurostar!" says he.
Hmm. Well, after taking out a small mortgage to get us to London on the train, pay for the Eurostar to Paris and somewhere to stay while we're there...maybe not. So we switched to somewhere closer to home.
Now, I'm thinking 'let's do the things the kids complain about - visit stately homes, mooch round little shops in quaint places, walk through lovely cultivated gardens'.
Mr Squidge is thinking '10-mile hikes in the Lake District'.
Say what? Don't get me wrong - I DO like going for walks. It's just that I prefer my terrain a bit flatter, and I was rather hoping we'd have time for some relaxation rather than a hard slog up a mountain or two.
So we've compromised. We are spending a few nights in Alnwick, taking in the castle, Holy Island, Cragside and having dinner in one of the world's largest tree houses! Just look at this beauty... (I feel a story coming on...)
|The trees go right through the floor...|
Then we'll finish up with a night in the city - Newcastle-upon-Tyne - revisiting some of the old haunts from when Mr Squidge was there at uni. You can't beat a walk in Jessy Dene...or a pint of Newky Brown in the Bigg Market.
The weirdest thing about all of this is that as much as I'm looking forward to the trip, I also feel very guilty for taking it! I can't remember the last time we went away without the children for more than an overnighter. I know the time will come when the kids leave home and we'll be able to do it without stopping to think of them first; but at the moment, it feels as though I'm taking advantage of the scouters - using them as a babysitting service.
Come the day, I'm sure I'll be able to put all the guilt behind me and focus on the pleasure of my hubby's company...