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

Wicklow People (Arklow) - - NEWS -

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.


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