I have been on holidays......
We used to go away occasionally as a couple. We might head down a few hours south of Perth for relaxing weekends full of good food, sleeping in, casual sight seeing. The pictures above are of Craig and I having a 'holiday' in Italy. We were on a gondola being whisked through the waterways in Venice. I can remember the delicious dinner we had that night, of seafood and pasta and good music. We chatted into the night before returning to our hotel room which overlooked the cobbled streets. We ate delicious pizza, we ordered room service in France and we sat by the clear blue lakes of Switzerland and ate custard pastries with strawberries on top. We took selfies and silly pics in front of the Eiffel Tower.
And then we had kids.
Holidays evolved. To more of a 'same shit different place' kind of thing. Literally. Here is one of the kids potty training on the way to Shark Bay for a camping holiday we had a few years ago.
Holidays became a juggle of 'did we pack the kids panadol' and 'is this all really worth it'. It involved me wheeling a double pram to the toilet blocks just so I could carry three girls and all their towels and clothes and toiletries. Many a conversation was had with old ladies commenting that gee I had my hands full and gee wasn't I lucky I had three girls.
Then came meal times. No more sampling of delicious cuisine and wines. No more five hour long lunches chatting about life. Instead we hit the local IGA and grab 500 grams of shaved ham and a loaf of bread. Home made sandwiches at the playground. Our conversation consists of negotiating who will walk who to the toilet block.
Hotel rooms evolved. Into the more affordable family option. Camper trailer.
|In our first camper, the jayco hawk|
|Our second set up, the PMX camper complete with strollers and portacots|
Fun times would be had. But there are also times of stress. Trying to find somewhere to heat up a baby bottle. Trying to find a playground. A camping spot that isn't too close to water and is close enough for the toilets. Trying to keep the kids quiet at 5.30am so we don't wake fellow campers. Trying to get the kids to sleep at 7pm when the fellow campers are all playing music and chatting and laughing amongst themselves.
I do love the word 'holiday' it sounds so glamourous. So relaxing.
Especially when I tell people we are going on a six month holiday. Oh how indulgent.
But the reality is, although we will be seeing lots and doing lots and having a break from our every day life; travelling Australia in a camper trailer with three children is not going to be a holiday as such. I still have to cook, clean sticky hands, wash clothes, wake up so so early.
In previous times we have gone away camping for a maximum of two weeks. I would then return home with out of routine children, mountains of washing and need to do a huge food shop.
I am wondering how I will go as we won't be returning home for a long time. in fact we don't even have a home to return to this time!
So this is how you do it when you have a family. And although there are shit times, it can still be magical.
Right now I couldn't be happier that we are dragging our three little people around this country so they can see and experience so much for themselves. And what a privilege to see and experience it with them.
Never a boring moment for us.
And one day many years from now when we are old and grey we will be alone. We can sit on a gondola in venice, listen to good music and eat great food and remember fondly back to our camping holiday with our babies.