SO I’m in the Isle of Wight with the kids for a week. The last time I came here I was four-years old. I don’t remember it but apparently I was driven down in the back of my dad’s Talbot Sunbeam with no seatbelt, a broken sunroof and Kevin Wilson blaring out the speakers. My mum’s cigarette smoke wafted out in bursts as she laughed along to the classic “Santa Claus you...where’s my....bike” We spent a week on the beach, scaling Alum Bay Cliffs to reach the various layers of different coloured sand, naked save for our jelly shoes.
SO David Cameron’s Childcare Bill offers to double free childcare for three and four-year-olds. Apparently this is a great incentive for parents to go back to work, but is it what’s best for our children? The Bishop of Durham warns that this incentive is too focussed on childcare and not on the child itself. I am a stay-at-home-mum to three daughters, aged three, five and seven. I went back to the office six-months after having my first child, and was about as popular as a fart in a lift as I ‘only’ did four-days a week.
Cat works in a nursery. She does a great job and the kids all love her. She’s young and ambitious so puts long in long hours, which annoys her boyfriend Nathan. They break up. She goes for a week in the sun with her best friend Sam.
They go to Playa de las Américas in Tenerife. At night they go out dancing. Sam photos Cat on the balcony before they head off down the Strip, and then later in the bar, two sunburnt faces grinning into the phone. More drinks, more photos. They meet some lads from Bournemouth and end up in a limbo competition on the beach at 5am. Upon her return, Cat’s boss calls her into the office. “The thing is Cat, there have been complaints from some parents while you were away”.
So we Air B&B’d our house and went to Chessington Theme Park for the youngest’s 5th birthday. Cleaning your house for total strangers to stay in is depressing. By the time I’d scrubbed the house from top-to-bottom, been to the dump twice and cleaned the oven out I became resentful. I wanted to stay in my nice clean house by the sea, not in a gaudy safari-themed hotel, but such is life. I was pleasantly surprised when we got to our room. It had a welcome quiz, which ended in a combination code that opened a safe of goodies.