Day 24 of the school holidays, and we still haven’t found our stride. The first week of the break we messed around getting ready for our family holiday, and Gidg was involved in that, then we actually WERE on our holidays and that was great. Then Ollie’s parents were here for a week (that’s another column on its own) and now we’re back to work but with a small blond helper in tow.  The summer brings with it another rhythm that we have yet to find. Gone is the imperativeness of being at the school gates at 9am, but the demands of work are still there. ‘I’m not tired, I don’t wanna go to bed, it’s still light’ is the familiar complaint from our daughter as 8pm slides into 9pm, and then sometimes into 10pm. So, a routine was needed, but which summer school to choose? You also hope that a summer school will give your child the chance to learn something they wouldn’t get the chance to do at school, it shouldn’t be a babysitting service.

The ex pat mum jungle telegraph has been beating loudly as the experiences of each other’s children dictate if we try a certain school. The local ones are pretty cheap, but the kids didn’t seem to be happy. Last year we stuck it out and insisted that Gidg go to a local summer school even though she was frightened of the bigger boys who would play rough games, we had to, we were broke, and we didn’t have a choice about not working. And the same goes for this year, but where to choose and would she be happy have become big issues.

One of Gidg’s little friends has gone to the Club de Vela sailing school in Port Andratx, which looks like fun, but she’s just six months too young to go. Another one is on a farm, others are staying at home. So it wasn’t as if she could go to a summer school with a mate, tricky business. Everything is a learning curve and we didn’t want her (or us) to have to go through another summer where she was miserable every day and

But then we heard about what Ian and Becky from Pickles Dance School are doing for the summer, and the decision made itself. Every weekday Gidg is now off like a shot to what has become affectionately known as ‘The Big Girls’ Holiday Club’ which they are hosting in a hotel in Palma Nova. It’s populated with lovely girls just a couple of years older than Gidg and they are all, of course, well versed in the ways of stick-on tattoos, Hannah Montana and pop songs. So far Gidg has mastered the art of swimming without armbands, is now wearing a bikini, and is learning to line dance. If that’s not preparation for the world of the big girl, I don’t know what is.


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