Saturday, 9 October 2010

I Heart Menorca

Touchdown! I survived the family holiday to Menorca.

Had to go on a wild goose chase round Plymouth the afternoon before we left, trying to pick up my Diazepam prescription for the flight. I'm convinced it would have been easier to score some heroin but eventually I got my fix. It might sound dramatic (who, me?!) but I HATE flying. I really can't describe how much I hate everything about it, pretty much from the moment of turning up at the departure airport right up until I walk out the doors into another country. It turns out that what makes flying even worse is being surrounded by your entire family, including a one year old and a three year old, all of whom could not care less about the fact they are on an aeroplane.

If I'm totally honest I was also a little worried about the whole prospect of the family holiday. I was sure it would rain for the entire week and we would all be couped up together in a villa, winding each other up.

Thankfully, we had brilliant sunshine almost every day and spent our time reading, swimming, sunbathing and exploring. Menorca is really anglicised - probably more than half the people we came into contact with were English - which, as a linguist, I find a bit of a shame, but I was expecting it to be characterless and built up, like the Costa Del Sol.  In fact, I was really surprised by how quaint and picturesque it was. One day I went for a drive with Skip and Mothership and we remarked how it felt like we were driving along a Mediterranean Dartmoor; single track roads, remote farm houses and fields separated by dry stone walls. I liked it so much I would happily go back. I've taken a few photos to show you what I mean. I'm not too good with the descriptives - I prefer to just take a picture.

We had a few hiccups during the week. The Mothership inexplicably turned into The Mothershits for 24 hours in spite of eating and drinking the same as everyone else. Then Squiffy came down with it a few days later, although I suspect that was more down to the fact he had eaten 4 yoghurts for his tea and drank about a litre of strawberry milkshake before going to bed.

We went to a glorious beach a couple of days in and of course the first thing I spotted as I strode into the turquoise water was a jellyfish (this literally happens every time I go to the beach in any country) so that pretty much ruined my enjoyment of that. Ironically, my anxiety levels go into overdrive on holiday. But I did still manage a little swim so I am proud of myself for that.

I also got to spend the week playing with my gorgeous nephews, JEdwards and Squiffy. JEdwards is a placid, contented, smiley, cuddly little chap and Squiffy is an adorable yet disobedient maniac.

One evening, mid-way through my eight-zillionth made-up bedtime story in an attempt to get Squiffy to go to sleep, he sat bolt upright, looked me in the eye and said "Perhaps I should go and look in that mirror to see if I look posh". No, I have no idea what he was on about either, but it was bloody funny.

I'm a touch embarrassed to admit we had a TV showing British telly so I am fully up to date with X Factor (more on THAT later), and I also found a shop that sold Cadbury's Flakes. But I feel I was entitled to these two indulgences because I spoke lots of Spanish as well.

OK, that's all for now as I'm off to meet some friends for coffees but I will, of course, be back later to talk about the total hoo ha that is the X Factor. I cannot wait to see what unfolds tonight!

Here's a pic of Jellyfish beach. I tried uploading more but it appears that in the week that I've been away the process I followed for the past 15 months has somehow changed and they are all coming out sideways. Will investigate and correct later. By that, I mean when Mr G gets up I will get him to fix it...

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