It is hard not to put too much expectation on our Summer holiday, and in fact I think we are failing, because we all cannot wait for it to come. The prospect of a European tour would, I know, make most people start applying for overtime, but we are really excited and cannot wait to get on the road. We have just purchased recliners**, and I anticipate that the 1pm to 3pm siesta time slot in Italy will be well used by me.
Only other comment of note is that for those that read these pages, you may know that my fishing rod snapped on my last trip. The*** one that got away. Ever since, I have been on a campaign with the finance manager to get a new one, and she is not so far very supportive of any such purchase. In fact, she was at one stage heard uttering "it is your fault for trying to catch such a large fish", which for anyone who has fished, is about as wrong as it is possible to get. Anyhow, I have found the rod I want, and it is modestly priced, but better than the previous, with a bit more strength to it.
As part of my preparation for Riverside Lakes, and as a further example of my slow descent in to OCD-type tendencies, I have also been using Uncle Google to educate me on the vagaries of good quality hooks, leader lines and general lines, as well as the correct knots to use to avoid "losing the big one". As you can see, I take this stuff very seriously. I now have some large, eyed hooks (to take the large bait), some fluorocarbon leader line (all but invisible to the fish), a new hook-tying device and a couple of fine knots memorised, all in the pursuit of presenting the bait well, hooking a fish when the bait is taken, and not losing it as I play it in to the landing net. With such dedication, who knows where things will take me.
Final story is about Maggot 2. He is currently obsessed with tennis, already spending the millions he plans to make winning championships, though perhaps a bit more hazy on quite how he plans to get there. He has a lesson 11-12pm Saturday, followed by his swimming lesson, and the first thing he wants to do when he gets home is have a game with his brother in the garden. Anyhow, we were watching a film, The Big Year, a very pleasant family film with Jack Black, Steve Martin and Owen Wilson (Hutch to me and LO, the little fella in Night at the Museum for the Maggots) as bird watchers****. At the end of the film, the TV switched to whatever channel was on the TV at the time, which turned out to be Primal Scream at Glastonbury. At the end of the song, Bobby Gillespie shouted to the crowd "come on you f##kers", at which point Maggot 2 said "I don't want to be a tennis player any more, I want to be a singer, so I can say that". Priceless.
==================================* I know, we were there at her birth, not quite literally coz that would just be wrong, but within a hour or two of her entering the world, and now here she is, about to turn sixteen, having just been to her prom looking like a very grown up woman, in fact looking just like a young version of her mother.
** And if that does not cement the image you have of me as being a boring, typical 'vanner, then I don't know what does. All I can say is that I deserve it. I am not saying that I go for comfort over style every time - I am not yet buying my shoes from the back of the Sunday Times supplement - however I am saying that, as part of this big tour, we are taking the opportunity to spend some of our holiday budget on things that will be useful beyond the holiday itself.
*** there were two actually.
**** An unlikely premise for a good film I grant you, but fun nevertheless.