Having the apprentice smallholder and rug rat MkII to trip over occupy, some thought has to be given to activities away from Rock HQ which is, as ever, bursting at the seams with critters. The apprentice has for a while now been obsessed interested in a small blue tank engine called Thomas. Not sure how this has occurred as Thomas the Tank Engine has not been of TV for a while, and aside from some slippers its hard to trace where this influence came from. So we have humoured him, buying franchise friendly yoghurts and most recently a train set.
This went down a storm and since Christmas the train set has been added to and expanded to such a huge size that it now takes up the entire floor of the new utility room. Plans to fit it out with washing machine and so on have been shelved until this phase of offsrpinghood has been got through. (anything up to 10 yrs then)
So yesterday we made a trip to see Thomas on his home ground, the island of Sodor, conveniently located at Drayton Manor Park and Zoo (where our peacock came from) and despite the threat of rain and having to come home with an even bigger train set we were determined to show the apprentice a really useful engine.
To say the day was a success would be the most massive understatement ever. So engrossed was our apprentice in all things steam that he completely missed the big lizard sneaking up behind him.
We got to ride on trains, fly helicopters, jet aeroplanes, drive cars, eat ice creams in the rain, watch our sproglet almost explode when releeased into the biggest Thomas the Tank Engine shop in the world and marvelled at his bravery on the Diesel mayhem ride (bit like the wurlitzers) where he made each of us go and have a go so he could stay on it.
In all a fantastic day, the rain kept off until we left. I managed not to buy a train set but was tempted to buy Henry one of Thomas' friends, he's now whizzing around the track after the rest of the engines.
Our boys were happy with the day and rewarded us with some quiet time.
Today summer carried on as normal, three inches of rain in the last 72 hours. Meant no work got done outdoors, instead I stayed indoors and fretted about next weeks bike ride.