Thursday 22 August 2019

This holiday in France is a farce! But at least I've got my baguettes

This holiday has turned into a farce of epic proportions. In fact if they were ever to write another Carry On film they could base it on our annual sojourns abroad.

A stay in a campsite in the South of France has been planned as part of this year's trip. I am not a fan of camping but the South of France I can happily do. So that was the compromise. Himself booked it and I eagerly looked forward to sipping champagne and eating baguettes in dappled sunlight while the kids played in the campsite's numerous pools.

We arrived to our van - I cannot bring myself to use the term mobile because that would be misleading. It was a shack on wheels. In fact I'm not sure it even had wheels.

'Hmm, compact,' Himself remarks, looking inside. I open the main bedroom door. The two of us can't fit inside together unless we're lying on the bed. 'Where are the sheets? And the towels?' I ask, looking around.

Himself immediately gets defensive. I smell a rat. 'Well I definitely ordered sheets.Maybe not towels though.' I insist on seeing the booking. 'I went for the cheapest option.'

Of course he did. Did he really think €15 was going to provide us with 400-thread Egyptian cotton sheets? 'You eejit. You ordered disposable sheets,' I said, shouting and pointing to the paper excuse for bed linen on the anorexic mattress.

The inevitable barney has to wait however because we're all bursting to go to the loo. I go in first. There's no loo roll. The campsite shop is shut and nobody has any tissues. We trudge to the site restaurant cross legged and ask to use the facilities.

My darling husband plonks himself down at a table and suggests we may as well get something to eat. The waitress explains the nearest loo is the toilet block a five-minute walk away. They look at me expectantly. 'Well you need to go the worst,' Himself points out. The 11-year-old tells me to bring back lots of loo roll, just in case.

Long story short, I got lost, ending up in the men's where some very irate french gents gesticulated wildly at me as I stuffed my handbag with wads of toilet paper.

You would think things couldn't get any worse wouldn't you?

That night we slept under beach towels due to lack of sheets. The next morning we discovered we had no kettle, no toaster and worst of all no hair dryer.

Then the icing on the proverbial brioche - the two boys come back from the swimming pool having been thrown out for wearing inappropriate swim wear.

Apparently budgie smugglers are what's deemed appropriate in the South of France. They buy the offending articles in the local supermarket and squeeze themselves into them.

The 15-year-old looks like he's been on a starvation diet, Himself looks like he's never heard the word diet. The two of them scuttle into the pool before anyone sees them.

I long for a comfortable bed with nice sheets and a toilet where you don't bang your knees off the wall when sitting down.

At least I have baguettes.

Wexford People