Yumi takes her brood of four on another road trip – and this time mummy and the big girls are off to a fun ‘Running Party’ – getting out and about for some exercise in the nation’s Capital!
There are things a person should never confess in a magazine such as this … 1. On this holiday there were times when I wondered why I even left home. (We work so hard furnishingf and making home nice. Why leave?) 2. I also wondered whether I had made a terrible mistake having so many kids. Two – maybe …? Four – OMG.
Taking all four kids on a road trip from Sydney to Canberra seems like a good idea when you plan and book six months out. Then it’s like a fantasy or sweet little joke. You don’t picture the hours stuck in the car with screaming babies and the bigger children who frown endlessly into their phones, and terrible radio, and that sinking feeling when you realise that, in spite of all your years of experience as a parent, you’ve forgotten something crucial, like an epi-pen or the pet, or in our case, a credit card and baby wipes.
“Where are the wipes?” my husband asks me again, as if repeating the question might change the answer.
“Why would we need wipes with two babies on a 3-hour drive?”, I say. There’s an eruption of coughs.
“Why are we going to Canberra?” the teenager asks. She is killing sharks on a phone game and practising her sarcasm. This is going to be the Best. Canberra. Trip. Ever. My strongest Canberra memory is from a childhood excursion when one of my classmates became unwell on Day 1 and stayed sick the whole week. His name was Jeffrey, and something about Canberra just didn’t agree with him. The entire 5-day excursion was punctuated with him vomiting in and around different monuments, usually while the rest of us were eating lunch.
My family tries to visit every two years, and one thing I can confidently say about Canberra is that Canberra people are the staunchest hometown defenders in the world. They are nuts about Canberra. Even my husband Martin, who once lived in Canberra for two years, can’t bear to hear Canberra criticised. If you mention you can’t figure out the roads, locals will tell you, “It’s the most planned city in Australia.” If you tell a Canberran that you’re from Sydney, they say “Where in Sydney?” and then don’t listen to your answer because they’re too busy listing the attributes of Canberra, including great schools and hospitals.
Two babies, two teenagers on a road trip – what could possibly go wrong Yumi warms-up pre ‘Running Party’ in Canberra