Victorian beach holiday

Ladies shade themselves with parasols,

Lace and silk to filter sun

In starlight bursts upon their china skin,

The children queue for the thrilling drop

Of the helter skelter ride,

And fluffy clouds of candy floss,

Cling to sticky fingers that

Pull at whisps and coat their mouths

With sugar flares, before they swim,

The sparkles on the rhythmic waves

Lapping at their tiny toes.

These are days that live forever

In the silver sheen of film,

That captured such a perfect time.

cricket on the village green

people playing cricket on green grass field
Photo by Suzy Hazelwood on Pexels.com

The thwack of willow on wood

Echoes dull, through the summer air

As children squeal and wives will clap

Over English tea and sandwich triangles,

Sat upon those tartan picnic rugs.

The women look so wealthy as they cheer

For men in whites, running stump to stump,

A gentlemen’s sport played in cableknit jumpers,

With grass stains on knees

That will be soaked away soon,

As cold beers are swallowed in cricket club houses.

I live on the edge of a lovely green park and during the summer it is used for all sorts of activities. There are tennis courts that are always busy and a Junior Parkrun takes place every Sunday morning.

But one of my favourite things about the park is the cricket that is played all Saturday afternoon. There is something so quintessentially English about that sound of the ball hitting the bat and the slightly restrained clapping of the spectators.

I used to go to the cricket with a friend of the family when I was about seven. I used to love the vibe of the club house, with the women in beautiful summer dresses serving tea and sandwiches as we played on the edge of the green.

These summer days are so special and I know that it will only be a matter of time before the hot weather is blown away and the greens turn to the golden browns and reds of autumn. Until then, I will enjoy those endless summer afternoons of tennis and cricket and running. Autumn will bring its own joys in the form of hot water bottles and crochet blankets to read under.

Much Love

Rachel xx

the little bar in majorca

people dancing inside building
Photo by Maurício Mascaro on Pexels.com

The DJ comes on at ten

As seventeen year old girls totter in

On six inch heels, in boob tubes

And skirts that parents would shake their heads at.

He only plays songs that get them dancing

While clutching their Bacardi Breezers

And singing their hearts out,

Eyeing up boys who will buy them shots

And share fishbowls of something blue.

The barman throws bottles of vodka,

Winking at the boys as they move in for the kiss,

They don’t know each other’s names

But there’s a chance they’ll end up in his bed,

With her sneaking out with those heels in her hand,

The sun rising hot, as she walks back in shame

But they’ll all be back the following night

Picking up others after too many Schnapps.

a day in sunny weymouth

We slowly walk towards the sea,

Complaining loudly about the pebbles underfoot,

Looking forward to reaching the waves

Where the beach turns to sand

And our feet squelch in the mud

And we count to ten, taking deep breaths

Before we launch through the surf,

The cold of the water crushing our chests,

Making us laugh with the rush of air

That escapes our lungs in time.

I went to the beach yesterday and it was beautiful. I haven’t been down to the coast in a while and I certainly haven’t got in for a swim in years.

It was quite exhilarating to get up to my waist and then just take that plunge so that your feet leave the ground. When I was training for the channel I used to do that every weekend and it became the most natural feeling in the world. But when you haven’t done it in ages, it really does take your breath away.

Once we were out, we lay on the beach, reading as we tried to warm up, and it reminded me of the days that I would get out early and sit chatting with volunteers on the beach when I was training.

We were lucky enough to be on the Jurassic Coast so we went for a walk along the cliff tops until we came to this beautiful little pub that was hidden between the hills, called The Smuggler’s Inn.

We have such a beautiful countryside and I remembered how beautiful it was yesterday. Picture postcard perfect.

Much Love

Rachel xx

the holiday rep

palm trees under a blue sky
Photo by Rachel Claire on Pexels.com

They come to airports with their clipboards

Clutched in arms, golden brown,

A healthy life under the Majorcan sun.

Until that sun begins to sink

And stars come out with fishbowl drinks,

Girls in skimpy clothes and boys

Out to score in noisy clubs.

The reps are at the centre of it all,

Leading guests onto the battle field,

The strip that never sleeps at night,

With crazy Brits just out for fun

That very often ends in tears

Or at least a greasy chicken meal.

revisiting a childhood place is like being struck by a magical thunderbolt, don’t you think?

I know I know this place

If only from the curling photographs

That my parents love to keep

In biscuit tins, under sinks and pots of bleach.

I know this place, somewhere in my heart

There is an inkling that I spent a childhood summer

Running on these riverbanks

And through the forests with young cousins

Racing into grandma’s arms.

I feel that sigh within my soul

That tells me magic happened here

Even though it’s only photos

And faint impressions in my mind

That tether me to this perfect place.

I’ve just come back from a week in the Norfolk Broads and I had such a lovely time. We hired a boat for the week and just travelled around the Broads.

We used to do this almost every year when I was little and it brought back a lot of memories. Some that I thought I was only remembering from the photographs that my parents have kept all these years, and some of them I wasn’t sure that I had straight up dreamed.

But when you do find yourself in a place that does match that memory, it feels like you’ve been struck by something powerful; a magical thunderbolt. And I had plenty of those moments on this holiday.

The photo above was taken in 1986 when I was two and it is of my nan, my aunt and me. It’s such a beautiful memory because nan isn’t with us any more and I know that she used to love those holidays.

I hope that you are having the chance to explore some of your childhood haunts while travel is limited. I can assure you that it won’t disappoint when you are struck by one of those magical thunderbolts.

Much Love

Rachel xx

doing a geographical

four person standing at top of grassy mountain
Photo by Helena Lopes on Pexels.com

So far this year we’ve never ventured far,

Like little magnets spinning back

To central spots that draw us in.

It will feel weird when forces lapse

And then we spin way out

Into the vastness of the Universe

And we’ll be left just holding on

Hoping we will find our way back home again.

I’m going on holiday!!!! Never thought it was going to happen but we leave tomorrow and I’m feeling like an excitable puppy. I’m a home bird at heart but sometimes just getting away is what we need.

I find that home can be a little bit like a pressure cooker, and that pressure just builds and builds until it’s too much to contain. And I think a lot of us are getting to that point.

A lot of us probably haven’t left our hometowns in over three months which is just crazy. We never would have thought that would be the case as we saw in 2020, and look where we are now.

We’re still staying in the UK so it’s not like I’m venturing far, but I feel like that bungee cord that has been holding me within such a small circle over these few months has finally started to lose its elasticity and so my reach is increasing bit by bit.

Whether this is a luxury that we are going to still have in a few months, I don’t know. But for now, I’m going to enjoy feeling that stress and pressure ebb away.

Much Love

Rachel xx

PS I reached 500 followers today and I am so honoured that so many people have chosen to hit that button. I love you all.