Jaqui's Daily Blog

Beach Day, A Barbecue, and a Bathtime Breakthrough

Yesterday we had the perfect opportunity to play our favourite game: Running Away In All Different Directions. If you have never played this game yourself, then The Twinkles and I (yes, indeed, this is Faris blogging, how did you guess?) would highly recommend it especially as it requires absolutely no equipment at all.


We were at the seaside for the First Proper Beach Day of 2016, according to Nanni who is keen on making such pronouncements, possibly because she feels it adds importance to an occasion. By this, she explained, she meant a full-scale day on the beach with a picnic, sandcastle building, a ride on the Boat Train and tossing pebbles into the sea. Just walking along the prom, prom, prom - which we have partaken in already this year, doesn't count apparently. I wonder when Nanni started making up rules as she goes along; I mean, how old do you have to be? I wonder if she was the same when she was a Little Girl? I shall consult her sister, my Auntie Maggie, who will surely know, if indeed anyone does. Nanni only has one sister while I have two but I try not to rub it in too much.


The beach proved to be the very best place for our favourite game. We waited until Daddy had gone off for his run because otherwise it would have been three on three which isn't nearly so much fun. With just Mummy and Nanni versus the three of us - well, it doesn't take a mathematical genius to work out the odds were in our favour. The very best example was when Nanni decided to take a photograph of us all waiting by the sign where we catch the famous Littlehampton Boat Train. We all pretended to be on our best behaviour then, at the precise moment when Nanni lifted her camera to take the photograph, Lilia set off for the beach, Tala headed in the general direction of the amusement park and I made for the Coastguard's Office. You should have seen the look of sheer panic on Nanni's face. Okay so between her and Mummy they did manage to scoop us all up - but it was great fun watching their Heroic Efforts.


Nanni told Daddy that it was like being on holiday in Ally Canty all over again though Daddy reminded her that, while it might have been the warmest day of the year so far, it was nowhere near as hot as Spain. Nanni wasn't too put out, even though you couldn't really argue with Daddy's reasoning, not to mention his command of Matters Weather-Related. She pointed out that a few hours on the beach represented many new experiences for the Twinkles in particular. Look at Lilia, for instance, filling up the coffee mugs with pebbles so that someone will have to wash them out before they can be used again! See Tala pointing in wonder at everything she can see flying in the air - sea-gulls, starlings, aeroplanes, kites. "That's a starling," I heard Nanni tell her, "Look at his sparkly feathers!" Tala pointed, obligingly: "Quack!" she said. That's my sister for you. She is a Girl Who Knows Her Own Mind. Not unlike Nanni, to be fair.


Talking about our Spanish Holiday reminded me of another game we played on the beach there. It was called "The Oh, No! Game" and involved me throwing my watering can into the sea so that either Nanni, or Daddy, depending on whose turn it was to play, had to wade into the water to fetch it. Yesterday we played an interesting variation of the game, using my two favourite dinosaurs. Thanks to Nanni for playing the game, both dinosaurs survived their adventures though, like Nanni, they got more than a little bit wet.


Nanni thought she needed a sit down after that (why do grown-ups always need to sit down at the exact moment that things become really interesting? One day I will find out, when I am a grown-up myself, say when I am four years old or so.) Unfortunately for Nanni, Tala and Lilia had commandeered her seat and were using it as a trampoline. Those girls sure know how to have fun.

Back home, Daddy cooked food on a barbecue. There was fire and everything, it was mega exciting except that Daddy had built a barrier of chairs so we couldn't get anywhere near the Interesting End of the garden. However we did manage to find a new plaything in the garden. It's called, for a very good reason, a Water But - it's big and green and contains water BUT there's a little tap at the bottom and all three of us worked out how to turn it on. If Nanni continues to introduce new elements into her garden it could end up almost as exciting as Upstairs.


Bath time is always one of my favourite times at Nanni's. I'd brought my Octonauts Gup with me, together with two Captain Barnacles to go with the one I'd left behind on our last visit. Why have one Captain Barnacles when you could have three? Unfortunately yesterday Lilia suddenly decided, after months of making an Almighty Fuss whenever bath time approached, that she actually liked the bath. Mummy said this was a Major Breakthrough. I don't know exactly what that means but I am assuming it is all about the ratio of Splashing to Water on the Bathroom Floor and, as such, not something to be applauded. In my Humble Opinion. I liked bath time better when it was just Nanni, me, Gup A and a Captain Barnacles or two. Or three. Though Nanni says it will make life easier for Mummy if she can bath us all at the same time.


Always assuming, of course - and it's a big assumption - that when she lifts us all out of the bath we don't decide to play the Running Away In All Different Directions Game. If I were her, I wouldn't bank on it...

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Latest comments

26.10 | 14:21

Mmm, was it because there were '24 men kicking a ball' that it didn't end entirely satisfactorily???

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15.10 | 11:13

I don't remember seeing this first time round.... but thank you for sharing with me. You write beautifully, and brought a tear to my eyes. Lots of love xx

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10.10 | 21:37

Jaqui I think your grandchildren are very lucky. You have spurred me on to write a letter to Amelia who like Hazel is away from home for the first time. 💕

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03.07 | 22:43

Wouldn't have missed it for the world. xx

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