We pulled up to the Seapearl Hotel and fell out of the van like the Clampetts. Orlagh was waiting and as Ossie said goodbye to his big brother Mehmet she saw me put my sunglasses on (lady code for crying) and she put her own on sympathetically.. she’s nice like that; I like to surround myself with emotional basketcases, makes me feel semi- normal.
We were portered (is that a word?) to our room which was amazing as it was a family room; 3 single beds in one and a double in the other for all the hot stuff me and the husband may get up to.
I fell onto the phone and ordered a bottle of wine.. Sultaniye, the absolute best and Ossie braced himself for the car crash that was inevitable. The wine arrived and I poured some for me and Orlagh and I sipped (glugged) as I unpacked. We made our way down to the poolside for the evening entertainment and I ordered vodkas while chain smoking. Ossie wisely took the smallies to bed and Conall threw himself into the kids competition with gusto. I got the hiccups and could not do anything to get rid of them bar take my un-detoxed self off to bed.
The kids loved the pool, Koray’s swimming lessons paid off and he swam like a little fish, while Conall looked on shocked. He tantrumed and blamed me for cancelling his lessons but if any of you remember I had to as he would become hysterical if he left the safety of the steps. It was a kick up the arse for him to see his little brother so proficient and he pushed his limits even putting his face in the water and I couldn’t have been prouder. I kept telling him that fear is the only thing that could stop him swimming (A fine parenting moment I congratulated myself) so he’d focus on that. I felt a bit frumpy with my togs but had nothing to worry about when I saw the size of some of the ladies squashed in tiny bikinis; I envied their swagger.
There was motherhood in all its examples poolside and I became a bit of a voyeur. There was the breastfeeding hippy, that always seemed 100% focused on her kids… I admired her and was desperate for her approval although she copped me on my one night out dressed up sans kids, having a fag waiting on my taxi at the front of the hotel and I almost kneeled down in front of her to beg for forgiveness. She trounced off with her baby swathed to her chest in organic, breathable cotton. There was also a huge group of sun-bed hoggers from Dublin close by. There were many, many kids, some in nappies and the mammy was able to sunbathe uninterrupted all day. She had a gorgeous figure which was adorned with belly rings and fancy fringed bikinis. There was always a matching kimono/kaftan; her hair would be in an immaculate hun-bun, eyelashes attached and tan even. I could see the Dad always legging it around after the kids but I admired her Idon’tgiveafuck attitude. I don’t think my sizeable arse sat on the sun lounger for more than 5 minutes at a time and that was with Ossie’s help. “Mam I want an ice-cream, mam watch this, mam get in, mam I need a poo, mam…fuck off (Rian).”
I must have bought them every conceivable inflatable device for 2 minutes peace, along with all varieties of ice/pops and fizzy drinks… I made the mistake of ordering Conall a cocktail one night called a Ben 10… green juice with a sparkler and the 3 of them had me hounded all holiday for Ben bloody 10s.
One day I was sick of sitting around the hotel and suggested bringing them into town; Ossie looked at me as if I’d suggested bringing them to a country club for a round of golf. We had the double buggy and decided to head for dinner… they all shouted McDonalds (including Ossie) and my vision of a nice family meal dissipated. We sat in the air conditioning of Mcdonald’s in a row looking out the window. I could see a restaurant (Planet Yucca) across the street and watched sadly as couples on their holiday in their going out clothes (mostly white) perused the menu leisurely outside. I tried to block out the sounds of my kids screeching over a sibling pinch, being looked at the wrong way or spilling their juice everywhere. I snapped back and cleaned them up, hurled some abuse at my startled husband and we made our way up one of the shopping streets. Conall spotted a Grand Theft Auto t-shirt. He has never played this game but decided he needed it so he lay on the ground screaming like Veruca Salt as we looked helplessly at each other. People were stepping over him and looking at us as if we were the shitest parents ever. We tried reasoning, some force but by jesus he wanted the t-shirt. The sweat was pumping off us and things got a little ugly … To my shame I said to my much-put-upon husband through gritted teeth “just buy him the fucking t-shirt” which he did and when Conall emerged smiling from the shop it took every ounce of my maternal strength not to punch his smug little face. We then went to get their haircuts in an old friend’s barber shop. The three of them went mental and tried to trash the place (I blame Ben 10)… Ahmet (the owner) looked at me as in “Are you ok?” and I just said quietly “what happened to my life?” He laughed as people with grown up kids tend to.
I haven’t even gotten to my amazing night out or the incident in the lift with the cocktail…. it’s coming
To be continued…