Well, we didn’t quite manage to squeeze ourselves and all our luggage onto the coach and in the end, we decided we’d better not leave any of the children behind so instead left some bags on the pavement to be delivered later. There was lots of excitement on the coach as we pulled away and that was just the teachers (they haven’t got out much in the last twelve months).
We often see School Journey as an important milestone on Year 6’s road to independence and maturity and sure enough, we must have been travelling for at least 15 minutes before we got the first ‘are we there yet’ question.
We got as far as Bracknell Services without incident and we stopped to have our packed lunch on the grass in glorious sunshine. Living the dream… apart from the part when we had to fend off some marauding seagulls – that’s a totally different kind of dream!
We arrived at PGL Liddington at 12.30pm and I can happily report that, to everyone’s relief, all the abandoned bags were re-united with their rightful owners. For weeks, the children have been grilling the teachers about who they were sharing with and now, finally, all was revealed and off they scampered to their rooms to unpack and make up their beds. Thankfully, everybody was happy with their roomies.
The activities started at 2pm and, it wasn’t long until everyone was soaking wet. No, it wasn’t one of the water activities, the heavens just opened. However, it takes more than a bit of rain to dampen Whitings Hill spirits and we all headed off into the deluge to race along the zip wire, crawl blindfolded along the sensory trail or learn how to survive in the wilderness.
This was followed by dinner, which consisted of a choice between vegetarian curry, chicken nuggets, vegetarian kiev, rice, and chips, rounded off with a doughnut. Suitably nourished, we all headed out for the final, whole group activity of the day – Wacky Races. It was still raining heavily off and on, so this activity was moved inside and we were all relieved to put on dry socks and trainers. This really was a ‘what it says on the tin’ activity with wacky being the operative word. Events ranged from flicking your shoe into a hoop to a race where you had to pretend to be an old person and were awarded points for artistic merit.
After finishing the Wacky Races at 9pm, it was then straight back to rooms for showers and into bed by 10pm. The children were given a deadline of lights out by 10.30pm and to be fair to them, they more or less complied, although there might well be a few who find getting up in the morning more difficult than others!
Thus ends day 1 of School Journey, 2021 and we are all so relieved to have some normality back in our lives. The children are all fed, happy and rested (mostly) so hopefully that means that parents can put their minds at rest too. We’ll keep you informed about our adventures over the next few days but for now, that’s over and out from Liddington.