Eric Morecambe statue

We're going home today, and no matter how much I've enjoyed my holiday I'm always quite excited about that. The best thing is that it's only going to take a few hours, and we can go at our own pace - no hanging about in waiting rooms or airport lounges. So we pack up and Tommy has one last photocall (which happens every morning), this time with Dennis the Menace. He's been so great these past few days, really well-behaved and good fun to be with. Neil says it's because he's getting everything he wants but I don't know. I thought that usually made kids worse. Anyway, eventually we're off and Tommy is a wee bit sad but not too bad. I'm not sure he realises that we're really going home this time.

We've done enough and seen enough to not really want to fart about too much on the way home. We stop at the services a few times and I'm starting to feel like I could compile my own guide to facilities on the M6. I hate going on the motorway, it stresses me out (even though I'm not driving) and Tommy gets more restless so we aim for lunch in Morecambe as one last fling. On the way in Tommy says "Not another beach!". We're so bad to him. I can see him telling his pals in years to come how he had to go to the seaside all the time and it was so boring.

We've been to Morecambe fairly recently, but this time the sun is shining. The Midland Hotel is covered in scaffolding. It's going to be exciting when it's done up. There are new bits and pieces but still a lot of things in disrepair. However some things have weathered well, like Brucciani's. The interior is closed (although the door is open tantalisingly) so we just get ice cream, from the grumpiest man alive. It's worth the sass though, it's delicious. Tommy has a play in the park and we all get our photos taken with Eric. That's Morecambe done and we're off again.

A couple of days ago at Pontins I'd found myself worrying about my environmental footprint. I know we should all be worried about the environment but usually I'm far too busy worrying about everyday stuff - money, time, kids, work - to think about anything big. I realised that I wasn't sweating the small stuff any more and felt totally calm (my conscience is fairly clear on the environmental footprint front). I'm pretty contented most days, but what I discovered on this holiday were moments of real happiness. It felt like we did something so simple that it was genius. Didn't go far, didn't spend a fortune or plan anything complicated, didn't really aim high in any respect, so there were no let downs. Brian Eno uses a great phrase - idiot glee (explained more fully here) to describe the feeling of "sheer, mad joy at the world". Who would have thought I'd find it in a holiday camp in Prestatyn.

Next: The Great British Holiday: Epilogue

I think you captured the mixed emotions of the end of a trip really well there. It was a very nice trip. Thanks Anne!

John xx

I'm so glad you had those pure fleeting moments Anne....tiny dots of happiness are so priceless...reading about them today made me quite melancholy as i realised that all the big stuff seems to have swamped me and mine over the last year and I need to look more carefully for those little breathing spaces of quiet joy.....

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