If you can keep your MAC when all about you are losing theirs and blaming LSB


“I should update my blog,” I say to LSB. “Facebook has been pestering me to post something, although I can’t really be arsed.” “Well just check in and say you’re on holiday, so you haven’t had anything to be sour about,” he suggests. “Ahem?” I raise an eyebrow. “Fair enough,” says he, “you were fucking furious for the first 4 days.” I couldn’t disagree. It started in Belfast, at the airport. Normally I try to pack light but this time we decided to check in a big bag, and so thrilled was I at the prospect of lots of different ensembles that I went berserk accordingly. All the shite of the day was chucked in: piles of clothes, emollients of every kind, books, kids’ stuff; no end to it.

So we arrived with 5 bags of differing sizes and at the last minute I threw in 2 cartons of Ribena for the girls, because the little one doesn’t drink enough and I have a terrible fear of children being dehydrated. Some people would encourage this on an Easyjet flight, but not me. But sure I forgot all about the juice and a commotion at security ensued: LSB apologising about liquids while putting his shoes and his belt back on and throwing his loose change all over the joint, while I grappled with the children and was X-rayed to rule out harbouring anything incendiary on my person.  We both acknowledged the grey laptop lying in the bottom of the self-same grey tray but each assumed the other had it and the upshot was we found ourselves at 36 000 feet and LSB turned and said do you have the Mac there and I said no, it’s in your bag, you know the LAPTOP bag and he says but sure you use it as much as I do so it could be in your bag, so no, it was left at Aldergrove. There was plenty sourness I can tell you. The only incendiary thing about me was my temper.


(Incidentally, when the long suffering father-in-law comes out a week later to join us, so we can inflict our children upon him, he collects the Mac, then forgets his own keys at departures and so we’re all now on first name terms with Derek, who’s in charge of lost property at the airport. And very civil he is too.)


I had these romantic notions of tapping away on the balcony while the children slept, sipping a Limón Damm and doing writerish things by the light of the moon. I also had a deadline to adhere to so there was a certain urgency too. But alas, the hotel room to which we are assigned lacked a balcony altogether, and played Godawful Euro-pop til 11 each night. It was small and cramped and we may aswell not have bothered bringing all the clothes because they ended up strewn about, since the children like at least 3 changes per day we found ourselves trapped in a sea of sandy, trampled garments.

In response to not having to do any work I got stuck into the wine with lunch then after an attempted siesta with the mad children launching themselves about, I endeavoured to shake off the inertia with the delightfully named carajillo which is an expresso with Baileys. Before you know it then it’s time for dinner with lovely Rioja. So between the shite disco music and the messy room and the hyperactive children, plus my fully indulged alcoholic tendencies, I started to get crabbed in the extreme. Then I would berate myself for being in such a sour mood when the sun is shining and that aside from the rubbish room the hotel and staff were actually lovely and the Catalans are being stoical and ‘business-as-usual-like’ when terrorists are ploughing into civilians only 70km down the road. In fairness maybe that’s what had me demented, with poor LSB leaping with alacrity in front of any TV screens and discreetly pointing to the concrete barriers which had been hastily installed as a deterrent to any would be terrorists in our neck of the woods.

So alas, I was none to sane for the first part of the trip but now LSB has flown home with the minis and I’ve found a most pleasant hostel for the night, before I traipse back down the coast again to meet my friends and sip cava by the poolside while putting this topsy-turvy world to rites. I am now in sole custody of the laptop so if I lose the fecker I’ll only have myself to blame, and I bet I probably won’t even open it after tomorrow.

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