Last night we went to visit a friend in hospital who is recovering from a complicated surgery and I could not help notice, how many cars were packed and heading out of town for the holidays.Many obviously geared up for camping holidays down the beach or up in the mountains as they had caravans, trailers and roof racks laden with camping gear, as they made their away along the outgoing freeways heading south to the Peninsula or east to the surf beaches and the alpine parks. Leaving early to avoid the congestion later in the week is a smart move because come Friday night, the traffic will be gridlocked!
It is difficult to believe that this is the beginning of the summer holidays as it is quite cool with intermittent showers unlike the normal start to the end of year school break (4weeks) and Christmas holiday period.I hope the weather improves because it is disappointing to invest so much emotion and money on a trip away with the family, only to have it spoiled by inclement weather( I am thinking of those dutiful parents who could be faced with spending weeks trapped in a tent or caravan with bored children. LOL). I joked to D about how those cars leaving for their holidays reminded me of the trips we used to have as kids.
When I was a child we would always have an enormous Christmas Dinner at home with extended family and friends, then on Boxing Day, pack up and head down the highway to our holiday house on the Gippsland Lakes. Prior to Christmas, my father who had his own electrical contracting business would sell all the excess copper wiring and scraps , which he would collect throughout the year and this would fund our four weeks at the beach. We were very fortunate that my parents purchased the house early in their marriage and our family and friends could use it as they wished and never had to worry about costly holidays. It was not flash, a besser block house on a double block of land but it had all the basic amenities we required.
Transporting a family of 7 children, a cat, clothes, food, etc for a 4 week holiday was almost a military operation. My mother would drive a station wagon which must have looked to outsiders like a cattle truck, packed to capacity with “stuff” with arms and legs everywhere , as we kids travelled where ever we could find a spare space. My father would normally take his work van(which was never cleaned out and still carried all his electrical wire, ladders and tools) loaded with things like the lawnmower, the one bike we all had to share and anything else that would not fit in the car. It was convoy- like as we headed out the drive to commence the two hour journey.Those were long hot summers, which we children would spend at the beach, while my parents would remain home at the beach house and read, ‘sleep’ and generally enjoy some time without us, putting me, the eldest in charge of my siblings. When I recall these times they bring back some fond memories but make me realise the responsibility that my parents put on my shoulders, at such a young age. How times have changed 🙂