Driving home for Christmas

Driving home for Christmas

Both the Greek God(zilla) and I come from big families.

I love that Zachy will grow up surrounded by cousins, godbrothers, grandparents, aunts, uncles and many extended family friends.  I love how Zachy can and often will, reel off every single one of them by name.  I love that our get togethers are noisy, chaotic and hilarious.  I love how much everyone loves food and wine.  And karaoke.

I also love that we live far enough away to enjoy a few peaceful times together, as our little unit of three, every now and again.

However, at Christmas time, life does start to get a bit busy.

Last weekend, we travelled to Suffolk for Christmas lunch with my grandmother, my aunt Vicky, my parents, my two brothers and the A-Team.  That’s 12 people for lunch and just on my Dad’s side.

On Boxing Day, when we visit my mum’s side of the family, there will be over 30 of us.

Anyway, back to last weekend.

At 10.30am on Saturday morning, we packed up the car with presents and started our 2-hour drive to Bury St Edmunds.

At 2pm, we finally arrived.  Tired, hungry and 1.5 hours late.

It all started because the Greek God(zilla) doesn’t like using Sat Nav.  He thinks Sat Nav is for girls.  He says that he has a built-in GPS system.  We argued about it compromised and eventually agree to switch on the Nav Man, on the condition that the “annoying voice” (yes, the voice that tells you which direction to go in) is muted.  In hindsight, this was our first mistake.

We made it to Rotherhithe tunnel without any major hitches.  Zachy had even sweetly fallen asleep in the back of the car.  So far, so good.

The map on the screen showed a clear straight line with a left turn on to the A12 coming up soon.

“There’s a left turn coming up soon” I said to the Greek God(zilla), before relaxing my shoulders and settling down into Red magazine.

I was happily reading all about Zoe Ball’s marriage, when I heard: “Was I supposed to turn left there?” as we drove past the turning for the A12.

Errrr, yes.

“Don’t worry, take the next left” I suggested and immediately regreted it, as I realised we were now heading towards the Blackwall tunnel and about to cross back over the river again.  Whoops.

The Greek God(zilla) tried to yank the Sat Nav out of its socket so that he could throw it out of the car.

In silence, we headed back to Rotherhithe tunnel so that we could cross the river for a third time.

I was desperate to get back to my Zoe Ball article, but did not dare to even flick one eye across the page.

I wish I could tell you that the drama ended there.

Sadly, it did not.

“I’m hungry, Mummy” squeaked a little voice from the back a few miles later.  Luckily, I had a couple of satsumas in my bag, so passed one back.

The Greek God(zilla) was still not speaking, until…

“Was I supposed to turn off there?”

Errrr, yes.

“Do you think we should allow the Nav Man to speak now?” I asked hopefully.

At this point, I thought the Greek God(zilla) might try and throw me out of the car.

“Daddy’s naughty” came a soft voice from the back.  I buried my head in my scarf and tried not to snort out loud.

“Take the next left” boomed the “annoying voice”.  So, the Greek God(zilla) started indicating and turned off… onto the hard shoulder.

I wish I could tell you that the drama ended there.

Sadly, it did not.

When we had finally navigated our way back onto the motorway and had turned off at the correct junction, the little yellow petrol light pinged on.

We continued for a few more miles… no sign of a petrol garage.  A few more, still nothing.










And so it went on, until we finally reached our destination – tired, hungry and 2-hours late for lunch.

We ended up having a wonderful day.  Zachy and Archie Bear were thoroughly spoilt and were allowed to eat chocolate and crisps and drink pure orange juice.  They unwrapped toys and books and soft dinosaurs.  They jumped on Grandad.  Over and over again.

After a few drinks, the Greek God(zilla) turned to me and said “You can drive home tonight, love”.

And, I did.

In under 2 hours.

Driving home for Christmas or staying put?


  1. December 22, 2011 / 9:04 PM

    Ah, that did make me Lol … although I hate Sat Nav too. God, I’d love a chauffeur!

    • Grenglish
      December 24, 2011 / 4:41 PM

      Ah Kate, of course you do all the driving in your house! I think that is the secret to a happy marriage 🙂

  2. Noo
    December 22, 2011 / 10:09 PM

    Pan and Mark are made of the same cloth,. He is hopeless. Just driving home from Padidngton tonight he managed to take 3 wrong turns with sat nav turned on and the volume up! How is that possible? I’d prefer to drive myself anyday xx

    • Grenglish
      December 24, 2011 / 4:40 PM

      We are clearly the more superior drivers…

  3. Rickie Brandt
    December 23, 2011 / 3:58 AM

    All men hate asking for directions. Thankfully all was forgiven by the end of the evening.

    • Grenglish
      December 24, 2011 / 4:40 PM

      until the next time, Rickie! Have a wonderful Christmas xx

  4. richmondmummy
    December 28, 2011 / 11:45 PM

    Too funny (obvs not for you and Z on the journey!) – I had to read it out to Richmond Daddy as I was laughing out aloud while reading it xx

    • Grenglish
      December 29, 2011 / 12:17 PM

      haha, we are both laughing about it now too! At the time, it was quite stressful 🙂 xx

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