After half a day at work I can home, caught up on TV a little, tidied the house a little, had a nap, then prepared a few more things before driving to the train station to pick up K’s 16 year old brother and his mate who would be staying with us for the next 3 nights.
What was left of the night was spent eating beef wraps, chatting and watching TV.
K had a half day at work so left me and the boys to sleep until about 10am.
My first duty was to make them a breakfast of bacon and egg sarnies. I could have let them do it themselves but I didn’t want to imagine what carnage there would be.
After 1pm we got the bus into town cheaply by pretending the younglings were 15, then left them to wander around for a few hours while we did our own thing.
We managed to buy ourselves a rucksack each for just over half the price I was going to spend on only 1. So that was a good saving.
After diving in a few more shops there was just enough time for me to get tickets for future gigs (Electric Boys, It Bites, Fish (unplugged), Pure Reason Revolution), check out a Chinese buffet place I might be going to on Friday, and chill at the pretend beach currently taking over the town square.
For that days Chinese buffet the lads were once again 15 (the drinks waitress said ‘big boy’ like she knew one of them wasn’t) and then 16 again at the cinema to see The Inbetweeners. It wasn’t as totally funny as I thought it might be but did have its moments. Is was also quite touchingly sweet in places as the 4 losers attempted to get girls.
The night had fallen on the city and the tarts were walking on their heels like drunken dinosaurs. But we bypassed the places most of these gather and went onto a rock pub where we got the teenagers some fizzy pop and told them to get their rocks off to the band playing upstairs and the pole dancers.
Burger King and a bus ride ended a good day.
The boys emerged some time after 10am completely formed (hair styled and crimped) and at the sound of the gong came down for some scrambled egg on toast.
After midday we left the concrete jungle and headed to Sherwood Pines. 3300 acres of land in Sherwood Forest of which a small part of is taken up by Go Ape.
tree-top high wires, tricky crossings (using ladders, walkways, bridges and tunnels made of wood, rope and super-strong wire) and wind-in-your-face zip wires; finished off with a liberal dose of people in search of their inner Tarzan. - Or in my case Jane, before she met the swinger.
We were strapped into harnesses and given a safety briefing before heading onto the 6 knee-knocking tree-top adventures which got progressively more scary.
A ladder made of wood and rope was always the first obstacle to conquer, and often one of the hardest things for me to do. Quite often I would find myself crawling onto the tree platform at the top on my knees and hugging the tree for comfort.
At each tree platform I would clip my karabiners onto the red cable as instructed and look out onto whichever challenge was hovering in front of me. Then attach my pulley to the safety cable, and myself to the pulley, then step out 30 foot above the forestry ground.
At 3 points there was an easy way and hard way, and I only wussed out on one of them which definetly would have had me doing the splits. The biggest challenges for me were the dangling round wooden log swinging steps, the 3 inch tightrope walk, the horrible thin ladders and the Tarzan swing leap of faith. I also didn’t fancy the cargo nets much, I guess I’m not that great at climbing.
But I did all 6 and managed to get an arse full of soft wood chips at the end of each exhilarating zip wire. I didn’t get many photos of a sweaty nervous me as I had to have my camera attached. But the lads had a great time and I was pleased of my accomplishment. I might not have conquered any fear of heights fully, but I would try it again if forced to.
Sunday night was spent doing something a bit more grounded this time also including K. 3 games of tenpin bowling each for £5 per person. A good 2 hours of fun with beer and finished off with a tub of Chunky Monkey which my local supermarket doesn’t seem to sell :)
I laid out a choice of cereal, porridge and biscuits for the young dudes breakfast. Then I added the option for micro-chips and fish fingers. No surprise in what they picked.
I forced them to go shopping with me then drove them back to the station.
It was nice to entertain them over the weekend but also nice to get things tidied up after they left :)
Teenager invasion – Survived. What’s next?