LAURA CARTLEDGE: It seems the road to sunburn is paved with my good intentions

C101413-1 JPOS Chi Sept9 Staff Photo Louise Adams

C101413-1 JPOS Chi Sept9 Staff Photo Louise Adams

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A ‘MINIBREAK’ – just saying it makes me smile.

It’s a bit like a fun-sized chocolate bar, not quite as good as the real (full-size) thing but on the plus side you can have more of them without feeling guilty.

Long weekends always make me feel grown-up too, not just because I am now the proud owner of a plug adaptor – something I have always previously had to ‘borrow’ from my parents.

But don’t be fooled...

I mean, I wouldn’t say my highlight of the stay in Bruges was discovering our hotel room had a ceiling fan.

However, it could be argued we spent more time throwing socks at it than most couples might do with a historic city on their doorstep.

This should be taken more as an insight to our childish nature than an insult to our destination.

Bruges is beautiful, with a brilliant array of buildings, all different sizes and squashed together, which look like overflowing bookshelves to the network of narrow cobbled streets.

Plus it is amazing the amount of ground you can cover – especially when hunting for the best deal for moules and frites.

We took the task seriously, so much so in fact we had to stop for regular ‘waffle breaks’ and ice-cream research.

When this all got too much we hired bikes and spent a day leisurely cycling alongside the canal.

Despite it being cooler than it was at home, it was still in the high 20s. But by the water it was shady, it was cool and I was stupid.

Yes, I had packed two bottles of factor 50 despite only being away for three full days. But... it just wasn’t much use sitting in our hotel room.

So as the sun set on our day, I started to get brighter and brighter.

And it was no ordinary burn.

Red on top but white underneath, I woke up to find I resembled my favourite of all the boiled sweets: a rhubarb and custard.

At least it hid my embarrassed glow.