“The Jolly F”, the flowers read across the flowerbeds around the park in Skegness. The rest of the phrase had been removed. I wondered, or rather hoped, that the flowers had revolted and somehow managed to change the intentioned “Fisherman” to something much more colourful.
Yes, I was at Skegness on a lovely British Summer’s day! From the US to Skegness in one week! And it truly was a lovely British Summer’s day. So often, the phrase is used to mean “chucking it down”, but it was gloriously sunny weather.
It was a spontaneous invitation from friends that took me to Skegness. I didn’t need asking twice, as my craving for fish and chips was starting to get out of hand and the thought of fish and chips by the sea was too good to miss.
We took an interesting route to the coast which seemed to bother the others, however I was content to see some British scenery for a change, and we got there about lunch time. So we headed straight for the fish and chips. I’d built it up in my mind, so I was expecting to be disappointed…I wasn’t.
OK, they weren’t the greatest I’ve ever had, but as I ate them out in the sun, they dealt me what I was really craving for – an English experience. And what can be more quintessentially English than fish and chips by the seaside?
And what about Skegness? Well, what about it? It has changed a bit, but you can still see everything it has to offer in a few hours. The seal sanctuary, come butterfly house, come crocodile house, come petting zoo was pretty good. Obviously, they had to keep adding to the seal sanctuary to entice visitors, but at least you knew your money was going to the right place – although, I have to mention that the solitary crocodile didn’t look very well suited to it’s small indoor enclosure. The seal keeper (if that’s the right word) also needs to work on her delivery when mic’ed up to tell us about them as she feeds them. I couldn’t work out if she was genuinely bored or that was just the way she always talked.
We couldn’t believe the weather, so a gentle promenade down the beach, ice-creams melting in hand, was lovely. I thought it might just be me, what with me being freshly back in the country, but everyone else seemed to be enjoying the sand, sea and sunshine.
So, we’d done fish and chips, ice-cream, beach (complete with very healthy looking donkeys, in stark contrast to the state of them when we were young enough to ride them) and seal sanctuary – which meant all we had left to do was wandering round the shops (still selling the usual tat), go to the amusements (who still wants to win 2p coins? I was hoping I’d lose because I didn’t want a pocket full of them) and also buy rock/candyfloss/dinky doughnuts (delete as appropriate).
I personally don’t see Skegness as a potential holiday destination, but I can see how some people may wish to stay there to use it as a base for exploring the east coast. Also, it did get me thinking back to caravan holidays and how much time we spent together as a family, especially if the weather was bad – many good times with board games and the like. Perhaps the adventurer in me, or the snob (I’m setting myself up for “snob in me” jokes) makes me want to seek out more exotic destinations and it’s true I enjoy seeing far flung places, but it costs. Maybe the Skegness crowd have got it sussed in the sense of it’s not where you are, but who you’re with?
Whatever makes you a Jolly F******!