Saturday, March 19, 2005

Daarrn Sarrf

I’m down in London for a long weekend to see the folks. I usually favour the train on environmental grounds, but the journey times and prices are just prohibitive for this trip, so against my green conscience I elect to fly with Jet2, the new budget service running between Manchester and Gatwick.

It’s a bit of a contrast to the BA shuttle that I’ve used in the past. There are only 3 flights a day so the times aren’t always the best and with no self-service check-in facilities, and out of the way check-in desks and departure gates mean you need to allow more time either end. Then again, at these prices (from £30 return incl taxes) it would be foolish to grumble. OK you don’t get a snack and a freebie drink, but then on an hour flight that’s not really a hardship (and let’s face it swiping a freebie Smirnoff miniature feels good, but…).

Happily my brother and his family have also come across for the afternoon, so I also get to catch up with them.

I didn’t think large Easter Eggs for the kids would survive the journey particularly well, so I opted for smaller eggs to use for an Easter Egg hunt, which went down a storm.

Once all the eggs were found, ‘Aunty L1z’ got dragged outside by J and R to play football.

Well I say football…4 year old J (complete in England replica kit and announcements that he is Michael Owen) seems to have an interesting approach to the game. Let’s say he has an eclectic approach to sport, happily accommodating aspects of netball (picking up the ball and moving it across for a better shooting angle) and rugby (about to be tackled? Simply throw yourself on top of the ball) as needed.

It’s no surprise that his older sister, feels the need to approach Granddad for a whistle and yellow and red post-it notes to be used as cards. In contrast to her younger sibling, she’s one of life’s natural referees, with a tendency to get a bit hung up on things being done 'right'.

Still when the referee/goal keeper is only 6 years old and the defender only 4, it’s very easy to sweep up a giggling monster under each arm and score at least one goal yourself.

Not that they seem to mind, any opportunity to be swung around or turned upside down is unfailingly met with great enthusiasm. Why is it that kids love being dangled upside down so much? When do we lose that desire?

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