On holiday with teenagers and no wifi

work at home


We went to a holiday park for the Easter weekend. It was about an hour’s drive away especially for only son who hates long journeys. Even so he spent the entire time asking how many more minutes it would take and lamenting the fact that we hadn’t opted for the local B & B five minutes from Tesco. Everyone was in the holiday spirit. Until I dropped the bombshell that there was no wifi…except patchy reception in the holiday park’s bar.

Daughter one had a meltdown and disappeared to bed with a migraine. It was 5.30pm. To be fair, she needed wifi for her homework, but it was not the best start. We went to the local village to get fish and chips and I spotted a Starbucks. Luckily I had brought my chromebook despite everyone telling me that I was banned from doing any work for the weekend. I told daughter one that we could go to the local castle while she sat in Starbucks writing her English essay all Saturday. She seemed to calm down. The holiday park was near the beach. We went for a walk and returned to have fish and chips.

The next day my partner woke up and crashed his head into the electricity meter and I woke up with food poisoning. “Can we go swimming?” asked daughters two and three. All trips to the swimming pool had to be supervised by an adult. I was the only adult with a swimming costume. “Let’s just wait a couple of hours,” I said while lying on the floor groaning in pain.

Only son and his sisters played tennis outside the chalet. The sun came out and the team rallied and headed into town to see the castle and most particularly, its dark, scary dungeons. Daughter one decided that charity shops were more fun that writing an English essay in Starbucks. “I HATE charity shops,” said only son very loudly as we entered the first one. “I hope we are not thinking of going to Poo Look,” he added for good measure. New Look was just across the road. I told him that this was the penalty he paid for having three teen/pre-teen sisters as well as having to hang around for hours waiting for them to get ready to go out.

We came back and had a round of tennis and another stroll on the beach. It was becoming quite relaxing. I could get used to this, I thought, with ony 48 hours to go until I was back at work. Only son bounded up on Easter Sunday and collected all his eggs. We went swimming, visited another nearby town, went to an art gallery, drank slush puppies, played more tennis and generally took it easy. My partner discovered that there was indeed wifi on the camp if you stood outside the main reception with your phone in the air.

Within five minutes of getting home, all the teenagers were on their phones. “What do you remember from the Easter holidays?” I asked only son on the way into school yesterday. “Well, the best bit was the holiday park,” he began, “even though there was no connection…”

*Mum on the run is Mandy Garner, editor of Workingmums.co.uk.

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