Monday, 4 July 2016


It was the weekend to test the van to its capacity, not with fuel, water or vino but with its ability to entertain three kids. Myself (43) , Jack (14) and George (11). Typically I had arranged to take the van out for a couple of nights but didn't book into anywhere until we set off. After numerous "sorry we're full" responses I hit the jackpot with a CL in Cotgrave called Heronbrook. The reviews looked good and they all remarked on it being peaceful. Perfect... if your 43!  Looking back on the weekend it all seemed a little Tim Burton. Secret little sheds, Mars rovers and giant dogs.. Had I parked to close to the Morning Glories? Ask Adlous huxley.

We picked the van up and tapped in the postcode, it was only 25 minutes up the road, perfect. All aboard the yellow submarine, George navigating and Jack somewhere in the back.

Once we pitched up George took a stroll to see that was beyond the field.

It was sheep, lots of sheep, happily chewing their way through the day.

There was a lovely little shed  that had all manner of information on it, walks, prices, recycle info.  But what was inside?

It made me smile, a very thoughtful little CL. It had books, board games, magazines, more information on local walks and a little vile that has a hand written label on. it said "Drink Me!"

We grabbed a few "traditional" bits of entertainment and took them back to the van. Since Jack couldn't see where the batteries went or how to plug them in, they went un-played.

Then night set in

All was quiet, nothing could be heard apart from the telly. "Take me out" I believe!

With the kids asleep and Tink struggling to hold a decent conversation about the recent Brexit situation, I decided it would be a good time to sample the "Drink Me!" bottle from the magic shed. Queue twilight zone or some other mysterious mood music.

I was no longer a middle aged man boring his kids with jigsaw puzzles, I was commanding the ill fated Beagle II mars lander.

Tink had eaten the cake labelled "Eat me!", she grew and grew.

Lucy in the sky with Diamonds.
With a whoosh, I was back in bed looking up at a wonderful morning sky.

Being unsure exactly what had happened during the night I thought it best not to tell the kids I had been on a magical voyage of mystical proportions while they lay sleeping, intoxicated by the 40 year old dust from the jigsaw puzzles.

Maybe I should keep to the kindle and leave the bottle of "Drink Me"'s to those that can handle more than a couple of shandys in one night.


  1. Go on then enlighten me, what is that dome thingy on the roof? I think that the glue used in the van during construction is having an effect on you Baz😂😂
    Nice to see you are out and about with the kids mate. Golden memories for them, especially if they have to call three 9s cos you've freaked out on unknown liqueurs 😂😂

    1. Alright Pete, which dome thing? The one on Beagle II?... I dont know mate, I never go up there unless under the influence of .. the wife... you know when it needs a clean!