Posts Tagged ‘monkey bars’

Golden Coast

On our third year of Eurocamp holidays, we spend our first week on Spain’s Costa D’Orada.

Eliza turns anything solid into gym equipment, for chin-ups, swings, etc: the barrier around our decking, trees, cafe tables, arms of chairs and the beach serves as the location for her floor routine. Her cherished achievement is completing the monkey bars across one of the pools. None of the other kids on the whole park gets close.

Robin buzzes between activities. Exploring or drawing with Eliza; football and its many derivatives with Gabe; connect-4 with all-comers. With a friend called Katy, he and Eliza spend an afternoon collecting dead jellyfish and filling a trench in the sand with them.  He also has a new ability to occupy himself with an Astrosaurs book which he reads mumbling to himself after dinner and before breakfast.

Gabe’s holiday seems set to be a quest for objects of desire. A tour of Barcelona FC’s stadium ends in disappointment when the new shirt is out of his price range. Meals out are exercises in wringing from L & I concessions: another juice, dessert, another portion. Offers of other food show that both spirit and appetite are weak.

Gabe is at his sparkling best when competing. Toothy smile and happy banter when playing badminton outside the caravan. Chuckles and chat when playing football with Robin. Focus and fun practising goalkeeping on the beach.



Our first stop in London, down the road from Euston Station, was the British Library. Despite the kids being full of beans after two hours on the train, we directed them into the rare manuscripts gallery. ‘You have to make them do things like this,’ reasoned L.

Robin found a set of headphones beside a display of music manuscripts. ‘It’s not working’, he cried with his ears covered. ‘Stop shouting’ we hissed. ‘I’M NOT SHOUTING‘ he replied at a volume unsuited to the venue.


A trip to London, taking in the Olympic Park for the Diving World Cup, was a source of anxiety for Gabe. A scene of past and potential future terrorism. He wanted not to travel by bus. At Euston we discussed the probability of a bomb on our bus. One in 1.2 billion we estimated – far less dangerous than crossing the road. The statistics swayed him, but he sat rigidly on the bus and wouldn’t go upstairs.


We stayed with friends in London, whose daughter shares Eliza’s joy of climbing. On Hampstead Heath they clambered up and along the fallen trees. In the playground they swung back and forth across monkey bars, then set themselves tests of speed climbing up, over, down and swinging across the climbing frame.