When my in-laws offered to look after our daughter for a few days so B. and I could
sleep for two days spend time together, we tried not to look too eager as we said: “When?”
They live in Hampshire so we opted to spend some time in the nearby New Forest. Have you ever been? It’s like a fairy-tale grew legs, looked around, and said: “This will do.”
Trees shrouded in mist? Yep.
Chocolate-box cottages lying languidly around, wearing nothing but daffodils? Affirmative.
Cute ponies? Tick.
Whole swathes of wood to yourself? Yessir.
Spending a romantic night in your B&B, wearing a Calvin Klein slip, and puking? Oh…
It started well. Our break began with a boozy lunch at The Jetty in Mudeford, Christchurch.
We had complimentary glasses of Prosecco, oysters, chablis and a buttery, succulent lemon sole. Pudding was a white chocolate tiramisu with cappuccino ice-cream.
I looked out onto the Solent, breathed in the nappy-free air, undid the top button of my trousers, and sighed with happiness and indigestion.
After checking into our B&B, I had a nap and read a magazine. Then we went for a walk. That was a pretty good way to see in an afternoon. The next day we had a three hour walk, another staggeringly yummy lunch, (so good, we decided to sack off walking home, and sent for a taxi! The decadence!)
Everything was lovely until around midnight on our last night. I got up, staggered to the bathroom, and proceeded to circle the toilet like a rabid dog. My husband has never heard me being sick before, and he was in for a shock.
“You’re so dramatic,” he chided. Until it was his turn.
So we spent our second and final night on our first weekend away in 12 months, caressing the big ceramic loo in our en-suite. Maybe it was the oysters. Maybe it was all the rich food we’d had over the last two days.
Maybe our bodies had gone into shock from one lie-in and 48 hours of no parental responsibility. Yeah, that will be it.
Either way, I’d do it all again. The New Forest is lush, practically empty, and full of ponies. And our land-lady told us that if we came back in November, we’d see “pigs being chased by ponies. It really is quite a wonderful sight.”
Well, for that reason alone, I’m already canvassing my parents.