It has been a wearing week and we are all assembled in the marital bed trying to muster energy for the morning. The Vicar announces that we need to decide on our summer holiday destination so that the prospect of relaxation can coax him through the parish toil. Tiredly I set down my tea and brace myself. The Vicar likes hot sun and piazza cafes; I like cool cloud and wilderness. The 11-year-old prioritises high-street shopping; the 9-year-old adjusts his preferences to whatever will curry favour with the Vicar and me and most provoke his sister.
Me (hoping for an easy life): 'I liked Cornwall last year.'
The Vicar: 'The sea's too cold in Cornwall and it will rain all week.'
Me (still hoping for an easy life): 'You liked the gite we had in Brittany this summer.'
The 11-year-old (rearing up from beneath the duvet): 'No, New York! Why have we always got to go to the same places?'
The Vicar: 'You've been to France twice in your life. I fancy a Greek island.'
The 11-year-old: 'No, New York! We've been to a Greek island. I need to explore new nations.'
Me: 'Some children never get any further than Yarmouth! Italy's nice and that would be a 'new nation'.'
The 11-year-old: 'All these countries are in Europe. I need to explore new continents.'
The 9-year-old: 'She means she wants to explore Forever 21.'
Me: 'I was your age when I first went on a plane.'
The 11-year-old: 'That was a different era. We live in new times and I need to go to New York.'
The 9-year-old (with fawning malice): 'Let's choose a holiday that involves lots of walking.'
The 11-year-old: 'You CANNOT expect me to walk on my holiday. What have you all got against New York?'
The Vicar: 'It gets very hot in summer and is very expensive to get to. I had a good holiday once in Turkey.'
The 11-year-old. 'TURKEY! You two are, like, so OCD.'
The 9-year-old (with fawning malice): 'Let's talk about Dad's beautiful legs!'
The Vicar: 'On second thoughts, it's too exhausting thinking about holidays. I'm going to get on with my sermon.'
Where can we go on holiday that is hot, cold and full of shops and wilderness? All suggestions gratefully received.