Thursday, 2 October 2014

Brown Legs And Grubby Feet

Even since he could walk, I've always measured how good a day Thomas has had by how filthy his feet were. And I still do. Last month though, I added another measure of happiness. This time it's because Thomas has spent so much time running around in the sunshine (yes, yes, with lots of sun cream on), that he has tanned legs. So now, he has brown legs and grubby feet and I couldn't be more pleased to see my son looking so happy, healthy and free.

September was a crazy month for us. Crazy, fun though! We went for a few days to the New Forest, then to Menorca and then to Romania.

The New Forest is really beautiful. My lovely friend Sammy and her lad Lewis, along with Thomas and I hitched up the happy camper and headed off for a few days. We went to Monkey World, Beaulieu (fab cafe in Beaulieu by the way - in the garden centre at the end of the main street), Corfe, Studland Bay, and Barton. We had a fantastic time and blinding weather too. Awesome.

Then we were home for a few days before we went to Menorca with my mum and sister. We had a great time there. Thomas isn't keen on water, but this holiday saw him really gain confidence and have fun in the pool and the sea. I think Menorca will become a regular haunt for our little family. It's so lovely there. Perfect for families.

Back home for a day and then off to Bucharest. This was for work. Lucky me, eh? :)

Bucharest is the capital of Romania. I wasn't really sure what we'd find when we got there. I had visions of it being very poor and very ex-communist. Actually, it was neither of these things really. Sure, it's an ex-communist country and there are lots of stark concrete communist-looking buildings, but there are also a lot of beautiful pre-commie buildings and it didn't feel down-trodden or scary. In fact, quite the opposite. It was vibrant and the people were enormously friendly and very proud of their city. 

Ceausescu, when he was in charge, ordered the construction of the most enormous building. It's the size of a small town. I've never seen anything like it - and there's the same again under the ground apparently. I believe it's the second largest building in the world. Bonkers! 

We did a pub quiz in an British bar there one evening where I unexpectedly found myself addressing the room of about 250 people, telling them all about the reason I was in the city and inviting them to join us at our quiz in a few week's time.

We have to go back at the end of October to run the European Quizzing Championships. That's what I was there for. Sorting out the last bits before the event. An event that includes a trip to the Carpathian mountains to see Dracula's castle.

Life is good.

Thomas can now say hello, please, thank you, yes and no in Romanian, Russian (he played with a Russian boy in Menorca) and Spanish thanks to these trips. Travelling is so great for learning. I often wonder how much Thomas is soaking up and I occasionally get little glimpses of how much he takes in. Most notably on the Bucharest trip was when we were exploring and he spotted this statue:

'Oooh, that's Romulus and Remus with the wolf', he said. Get in! I wonder how many people would have known that. Home Ed... WIN!

On the bus heading to our apartment in Menorca, Thomas was discussing Medusa, the Minotaur, Icarus and Daedalus. Another Home Ed WIN, I think :D

So that, in a nutshell was September.

We're back for a while now, so I'll delight you with more musings over the coming weeks. Lucky you!