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Herds of Cowley Men Sweeping Majestically Over The Cliff

March 22, 2015


We’re having a holiday experiment this year.

Steven has always loved a caravan holiday. In the past, his requirements for a holiday have been pretty minimal. There must be a swimming pool. We need to be fairly close to a leisure park so he can go on all the rides. There needs to be a café where he can have sausage and bacon for breakfast. And he likes somewhere where there is a show to go and watch in the evening.

But over the past couple of years, those needs have changed. The pool is still a must. So is the bacon. But he’s less interested in the leisure parks. Last year I paid £25 each for four of us to enter the Fun Park and after one ride on the ghost train and a quick plunge down the log flume, Steven had had enough. Similarly, the evening show no longer appeals and the crowds that gather there are always likely to trigger off a meltdown. He’s been content to take a selection of DVDs with him and watch them in the caravan in the evening.

So, this year I thought we’d do something different. Let’s get a holiday cottage. And once that idea had taken seed, another idea came in. Every year, I have to make a choice over which two support workers accompany us on holiday. It’s horrible because the ones that stay behind are always disappointed. This year, as I made some money from the sale of the house, I had the sudden idea that we should take all the support team with us. A way of saying thank you for all their hard work during the year and getting me off the hook of having to chose two of them. They were over the moon when I asked them. Although, they will be working for much of the week, there will also be plenty of time off as well. Steven thinks the idea is brilliant! I think it is going to be fascinating – it’ll be like the Big Brother house. I can’t wait to see who is going to take charge.

I found the above cottage, which has an inside pool, an outside spa pool and a room outside that is very much like our own private pub. It has a bar, a pool table, even a jukebox. Steven has struggled to get his head around this – “No more people in the swimming pool? Just Steven Neary and Mark Neary and his friends?” But what has really sealed this for Steven is that it is in Torquay. Home of Basil and Sybil. Steven looked at the photo on the right above and announced: “You can see the sea – it’s over there between the land and the sky”. Every plan he makes has a Fawlty Towers reference. He wants a cheese salad (Like Mr Hutchinson). When I showed him the picture of our pub, he said we could have: “A gin and orange, a lemon squash and a scotch and water please”.

One of the support workers is going to be our driver and we’re hiring a minibus for the week, so if Steven does decide he wants a trip on the ghost train, we can venture off the “cliff edge cottage”. We will go out on a boat. We will go on the land train. Steven didn’t seem that impressed when I showed him the cable car until I told him it was in Babbacombe – “Driving over to Babbacombe? Like Mr Carnegie?”

So, if you’re in the area in June and you pass a minbus with seven Cowley men singing Walking on Sunshine at the tops of their voices, give us a wave. Or pop in for some breakfast kippers (like Mr Lemon).



From → Social Care

  1. Reblogged this on rosemarytrustam and commented:
    Like the idea that punitive housing benefits’ officials have ended up funding this! Have a great holiday. It’s also good to review the options..

  2. meg permalink

    Thank you Mark. For the big soppy grin on my face. I am certain you will all have an absolute blast of a time. What a wonderful way to have a holiday!!

  3. Gosh – where did you find it? My daughter started hating holidays when she got older and won’t go swimming any more either. Her home is so central to her life it gets increasingly difficult to get her out of it. She organises everything and everybody, and I suppose I should be glad she is so content and resourceful, but I would love to try somewhere like that.

  4. fairybasslet permalink

    This really made me smile! Thank you, Mark. I hope you all have an amazing holiday!

  5. Caroline hunter permalink

    Fantastic – you will have a ball! 🙂

  6. Hope you have a brilliant time down here in Devon (I’m in Exeter). You all deserve it.

  7. I hope that you are all walking on sunshine the whole time you are there.

    Which is just a tiny part of what you deserve.

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