Emerging from the Forest

Journal

Emerging from the Forest

We had a good week at the Sherwood Center Parcs, although it wasn’t as relaxing as I’d hoped it would be. There’s something very tiring about mixing sports you wouldn’t normally do with late nights and patchy sleep.

From the five-a-side football tournament that Iain and I took part in on Tuesday, onward, I was aching all over and never quite recovered. This meant I never got to play more than a half hour of tennis, although playing squash on the Wednesday kind of filled the racquet sports void and I was too sore after that to really do anything else.

Sadly the “sub-tropical” swimming pool just felt too cold for me, so I had no enthusiasm for going there after we’d been twice at the start of the week. It was a bit of a shame for Elisha, as she loves the water and I’d figured beforehand that the pool would be the main source of entertainment for her. Fortunately Center Parcs provided an alternative, with soft play areas dotted around the village which Elisha loved running around in with all the other kids.

archery shotsMy favourite activity had to be the archery that Fliss and I did on Thursday morning. The guy who did the instruction was really good at going through the nuances of using the bow and placing the arrows on it, so although we’d never done it before it didn’t seem to daunting.

After taking in all the pointers I was worried I was going to be rubbish at it, but my first shot hit the target area and my second was in the generous bullseye, so it went quite well for me. Fliss was okay at it, but didn’t have the knack of being consistent with her shots, although I’m sure she’d have gotten better if we’d had more time. Here are two short videos of us both taking a shot;

archery shots archery shots

 

The Taming of the Shrew/Vole/Mouse

We had unwanted wildlife running rampant through the villa for most of the week, despite catching and releasing them back into the forest, they’d be back a few hours later. When I finally went and reported it at the customer services desk they seemed to take it quite seriously and sent somebody round to place some traps around while we were out. Later on that evening one of the traps captured a mouse, which was odd because it was the first time we’d had one of those.

The “Sherwood Banquet” on our final night was a good laugh, although the food fell a little short of what I’d normally call a banquet, and the Robin Hood themed entertainment featured quite probably the ugliest Maid Marion ever. I have no idea why he’d want to rescue that horror from the sheriff each week, but it surely broke some unwritten rule about providing some eye candy for the men in the house. 😉

Next day and the week seemed to have passed in the blink of an eye. We whiled away the morning and early afternoon in the sports cafe after we’d packed up and vacated the villa. The aforementioned soft play area and free wireless internet access kept both Elisha and myself entertained, while Iain and Nicola read newspapers and Fliss went for her massage.

When Fliss got back we walked Iain and Nicola back to their car and said our goodbyes, although it took us ages to get away after they left, due to us having to do our laundry before we hit the road. I was pretty jaded by the time we got to Andy & Rachel’s place later that evening, but managed to get my second wind enough to meet baby Alex and sink a few beers before bed time.

Arriving home yesterday evening it was good to be back in familiar surroundings and I had a great night’s sleep in my own bed. There are only a couple more of those on offer before I’m back on the road on Tuesday, though – best get myself up to bed now and make the most of it.