Its always been my Ma and I growing up. As a single parent she was always doing the best she could to bring me up and to have the same opportunities like everyone else. I’d say with the way I turned out she did a decent job. All jokes aside she was incredible. Even when she used to clean houses to afford rent and a small holiday, sometimes it meant I’d have go with her and play Mario Kart on my Nintendo.
This small holiday we had wasn’t anywhere abroad or to a fancy hotel somewhere. It was Norfolk in England. I’ve been visiting Norfolk ever since I was 5 when we moved from Jersey. We used to go for a few nights, at least twice a year and set up camp, literally. Camping in Blakeney was our favourite spot, I used to love boiling the water on the camp stove at night to fill our hot water bottles. Then snuggle under many blankets with Ma reading Katie Fford and me doing Sudoku (i’m an old lady at heart). Or swotting away at the mosquitos that would somehow get through the mosquito net protective lining. Bloody nuisance.
We used to go all around the Norfolk coast; to Sheringham, Cromer, Holt, Brancaster and Wells-Next-the-Sea which is probably the place we visited the most. I loved the high street with the all the small individual shops that led down to the sea front. The arcade with its blummin two pence machines which I have spent way too much money on, I daren’t think about. Then getting French’s fish and chips and sitting on the wall that overlook the quay, being able to demolish the large portion by the age of 10 (I told you I love food). This was also where I was introduced to the traditional British activity of crab fishing. There is so much thrill in pulling up the bait and seeing a crab on the end holding on for dear life. Poor things only wanted to eat the bacon and rotting fish heads. Then once you’ve had your fun you launch them back over the side and back they go into the murky depths. Just so they can be caught again by some other child who’s probably sitting next to you.
We hired out a whole youth hostel in Burnham Deepdale once. We went as a massive group of friends, neighbours and families. I remember thinking I was cool because I stayed in the dorm with the two boys who were my age, even though we’d been friends for years.
I love it so much. It’s the one place I can go and feel fully relaxed, without a worry about anything else. I started to go with my friend and her family and camped in Stiffkey. Then we grew up, passed our driving tests and sodded off without parents. Last summer after our last A-level exams, I drove us up in my crappy Suzuki Alto which I loved to bits. Considering this car had already done 130,000 miles it still chugged on and got us there. We had so much fun being free independent little women, going on loads of walks, finding an abandoned boat and hopping over two streams through marshland to find the treasured samphire. Wont be buying that off the side of the road anymore.
Ma and I when we’re both not working even run off for day trips just to get a taste of French’s fish ‘n’ chips and the smell of the sea. Maybe when I’m old and grey I’ll retire there and get fat because all I’ll want to do is eat French’s. But I’ll never be able to forget this place, I’d really recommend a visit if you haven’t.