Heading for home

485676431I told you I might be some time – that first run of the year really took it out of me. I’d forgotten how doubly exhausting running on dry sand can be – I might as well have strapped a full rucksack to my back and tried out for the marines. Fortunately help was at hand – our friends Trevor and Lynne, who have known me since I was born, have a caravan a few doors down from us so were on hand when I came panting back up the beach half an hour and almost 500 metres later.

Lynne was ready with an emergency door as I collapsed on her sofa. “I thought that was you going past but I thought, “Pops (my family nickname) outside first thing in the morning taking exercise? Couldn’t be.” I didn’t have the breath to argue.

The alleged reason for our trip to the seaside was to go through the storage units (yes plural – I think I could get a slot on Channel 4’s Hoarders with no problem at all) and try to reduce our acreage a tad. Instead we spent three days enjoying all the fun of Yarmouth sea front, the arcades, the chippies, the funfair, two museums and the mini golf. The only thing we didn’t try were the dodgems, but, as Jack pointed out, there was no need – I managed to bump into a bollard every time I reversed out of the caravan site. There were two now resting at a slightly tipsy angle already to prove it. I managed to straighten them out under cover of darkness and Lynne assured me there was no visible damage to the hire car. “What that?” she said, identifying a teensy scuff mark on the rear bumper from ten paces away. “No one will spot that.” Er….

Despite the sand I managed at least one more beach run before it was time to pack up and go home – or rather well after it was time to pack up and go home. I had a mild panic when I realised we had to be up and out by 10am on the last day and that it was already 9.20am and I was the only one up. I bumped into the site manager on his rounds on my way back from my run (have I mentioned I’m now a runner?) and tried to sweet talk him into giving us an extra half hour by putting on my ditsiest voice and asking, “Do you really need us out by ten?” “Nine thirty actually,” he replied, in the no-nonsense tones of a man who has a blocked loo to deal with.

So it was Challenge Aneka time – I upended all the beds and between us we were up, showered, packed, de-fridged, recycled and out with all five bags loaded into the car by 10.20. I took Katy with me to the office to hand back the key under strict instructions to burst into tears if things got tricky, but Norma was kindness itself and sent us on our way with a smile and clean slate.

All we had to do now was reverse back on to the road without, ahem, taking out another bollard. Fortunately Trevor and Lynne were on hand to wave us out, but after three false starts Trevor could stand it no more. He reached through the open driver’s window and elegantly steered me out, single-handed.

Always ready to lend a hand is Trev.

Posted by Amanda Blinkhorn

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