For those of you who live in Wales you will immediately know what this Year 6 Llangrannog Trip post is all about. Llangrannog is an Urdd camp in West Wales where children from all over Wales visit to polish their Welsh language skills and roll around in mud. I went there when I was 11 years old, my husband went there when he was 11 years old, my eldest two daughters went when they were 11 years old…..are you getting the picture? It’s a rite of passage for Welsh kids.
So, we packed off our youngest a few weekends ago. This is how it went!
Year 6 Llangrannog Trip – the low down
As usual the kids set off buzzing with excitement and anticipation with a few anxious faces thrown into the mix. Suitcases big enough to serve a family of three heading off for a fortnight on the Costa Del Sol were dragged across the yard and hauled into the boot. Irritation was expressed because there was already another school on the bus who had nabbed the back seats. But on the whole enthusiasm was not dampened and they headed off.
This marked the end of 48 hours of ‘packing’ and me trying to decide if I could actually be bothered to label every item of clothing or if I would just risk it. No, I couldn’t be bothered and yes, I risked it. I had my reasons. In my experience, there can be many last-minute substitutions to the pile of clothes that are being packed. You run the risk of being left with a pile of carefully labelled clothes which never actually made it through to the final selection whilst their unlabelled team mates get to go on tour!
There were frantic final messages between parents and urban myths regarding ‘pillow cases’ (I could have sworn they needed one but it wasn’t on the list) and mobile phones. You pop the ‘maximum’ amount of £10 into a labelled purse in the full knowledge that you will never see it again and will be presented with some sort of rubber and a bouncy ball when they get back. The rest will have been spent on sweets.
Parents faced the annual dilemma of balancing compliance with the ‘take old clothes because they will get ruined’ advice with ‘I’m in Year 6 and don’t want to look a complete mess’ which is fair enough. Thanks to the mud course (which sounded like hell on earth to me but went down a treat with the kids) most of the clothes came back damp and screwed up in a bin liner that I had cleverly remembered to pop in the suitcase. I was feeling slightly smug about this up until the point that I was informed that I’d forgotten to send her with a waterproof coat! I did leave the house with it, I’m certain, but lost it somewhere between the car and the classroom. Luckily the weather was kind so it was not needed on this particular Year 6 Llangrannog Trip.
Parents waited for three quarters of an hour outside the school so that we could be largely ignored by the kids as they climbed on the bus. Whoever invented tinted windows for buses has clearly never waved a child off on a school trip. We just about managed to spot our kid’s if their faces were pressed up against the glass and parents with kids in aisle seats had no chance! The kids were a bit more pleased to see us after we’d spent another three quarters of an hour waiting for their return and looked only slightly less exhausted than the teachers.
We were regaled with tales of sleepless nights, horses breaking wind, mud baths, the infamous great wall of Llangrannog (which was successfully traversed) and shown the bruises to prove that she was there. It’s safe to say that she had an amazing time on her Year 6 Llangrannog Trip
Thank you Llangrannog. Or should I say “Diolch yn fawr!” …………..see it’s working already!