When the going gets tough, the tough get going on their holidays

No Big Brother-style Geordie accent this week. Thought I’d give everyone a rest from Hell’s Kitchen. Which is sooooo close to being finished, by the way.

Apart from the splashbacks. Oh, and the painting. And the flooring. And the lighting. And the steel wall racks. And last – but by no means least – there’s the hob and oven to be connected.

And that takes me back to the very beginning of all of this, when my solution to a malfunctioning oven was to completely rip out the whole kitchen. Doh.

Hindsight is a wonderful thing. Given the amount of cock-ups and missing and broken stuff, would I do it all again? Probably, because I didn’t have to actually do it, Mr E did. And he is now fully entitled to crow about it. He has earned his Advanced Ikea Kitchen-fitting badge, and in time I will sew it onto his Good Husband uniform.

Anyhoo, enough flippin’ kitchen. Feeling unable to stick my oar into Mr E’s project, and faced with school half-term hold, I whisked the YMs off in Georgina the caravan for a few days at Haggerston Castle Holiday Park, as I believe it’s Sunday name to be.

Georgina is proving a bit hit, after surviving a long weekend on Mull and not bursting into flames or rolling off down the road, or succumbing to any other caravanner’s nightmare, such as a wheel flying off on the motorway or leaking like a sieve on a rainy weekend away.

She took ferry travel and schlepping from the ferry terminal half-way round the island on what can only be described as Rough Tracks Formerly Known as Roads in her stride, and made it back in one piece too.

I am surprised that anyone would take a car, let alone a caravan, to Mull. This is my fourth trip to that wondrous isle now, and the roads just get worse and worse. In fact, residents should receive a government contribution to their annual servicing and MOT.

And the DVLA is having a right old laugh asking them to fork out for road tax. I think the definition of road tax is that it’s a tax paid for using the roads, not having your car shaken to bits on them. Perhaps to DVLA should pay the good folk of Mull.

So, yet again, back to the subject in hand, Haggerston Castle. I am so glad it was one of the participants in The Sun’s ‘Camping for £1’ promotion, in which you could stay on certain parks for the princely sum of £1 per night. If you can get over having to buy The Sun to col!ect the qualifying tokens, this is a great promo. If I had paid full price for the pitch, we would have had to sit in the caravan all day playing Uno, as the activities for the YMs were many and varied – and quite expensive.

Nothing lasted more than about half an hour and cost between £4 and £10. Apart from the ‘Aerial Adventure’on the high ropes through the woods, which was a whopping £16, although it did last almost an hour. However, this longevity was mostly due to the fact that it was very high, very tricky and required nerves of steel. Clinging on to a tree half-way round and yelling: “I want to get down! I want to get down!” whilst refusing to budge does tend to clock up the minutes.

But for a kid-tastic time, you can’t beat the allure of the arcade, the draw of an indoor pool and a clutch of fast food takeaways. You can even have a pizza delivered to your caravan door. The perfect antidote to the dust, sweat, tears and tape measuring back home. As you may imagine, dear reader, my guilt at abandoning the menfolk soon melted away.