Those readers of maturity – i.e., old enough to recall Sacha Distel singing Raindrops Keep Falling on My Head – may remember the advertising phrase, “Your holiday abroad begins aboard”. However, it is our experience that sometimes a sense of discord sets in before leaving the driveway. Indeed, some families have been known to appreciate the Chateau all the more after several hours in a car with their loved ones.
At the time of writing, we are preparing to load the Vauxhall Zafira with a new tumble dryer for the laundry, plus various family members. Our previous trips have taught us that being in a confined space with two adolescent males can be an interesting experience. Sometimes there are periods of blissful silence as they focus on various electronic battles. On other occasions, they engage in ‘comic’ banter in the style of a double-act consisting of a pair of straight men.
Alternatively, the dynamic duo might ask, “are we there yet” shortly after exiting the ferry or plot inventive ways to avoid domestic work over the next few days. In fact, the sole method of restoring peace is to play the works of Anthony Newley on the Vauxhall’s sound system. Many revere him as the actor-singer-composer who so influenced David Bowie. But to those in the back seat, he is “that weirdo” who once sang, “I went up to a policeman, I said, ‘Can you hear that noise?’ He looked at me as if I was a gang of Teddy Boys”.
And this is why we always do our utmost to ensure that the Chateau is ready for you. After all, we really do know that special feeling after a long and arduous journey in the company of your family.