The best beach barbecue ever

I have fond memories of being on holiday with friends. We would go to the beach and as everyone else went home for their evening meal, Alan would light a barbecue. It was warm, sunny and quiet after the fun and games of the day. Time to open a few beers as we waited for the charcoal to be the right temperature for cooking. Time to enjoy the special glow of the early evening and and the specialness of the occasion.

We’ve had beach barbecues at our little seaside getaway before, but not a planned birthday celebration. I invited the family, shopped for the food and ordered the meat from the village butcher.

After a morning swim, we were ready for the beach. There was a lot to take: picnic blankets, chairs, the barbecue, not forgetting charcoal, matches and a bucket to carry water to put the fire out. I packed the shopping trolley with food and drink.

Last year the grandkids and I had found the perfect barbecue site. Set back from the sea, but far enough away from the road to be hidden by the trees: an open space that was regularly used for fires. The day was warm and sunny. We stowed the food under the shade of the trees.

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We lit the barbecue. In the time it took to walk back into the village to collect the meat, the fire was ready for cooking. And it was a sumptuous feast: burgers and sausages, onions, sweetcorn and asparagus – and we did remember the tomato ketchup for those who like it.

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Son appeared on his bike. He had taken a train to Maidstone and cycled the rest of the way!

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As the embers died, we toasted marshmallows, the way every good barbecue should end. Full of food, we lazed in the sun and watched the children play. Later, it was time for son to cycle back. Reluctantly we put out the fire, packed up and made our way back up the hill. It had been the best beach barbecue ever.

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Half way through the year already!

It’s all been quiet at our little seaside getaway this year. We had to wait for ages for the builder to be free to make some major alterations to our ┬áchalet. Now we have two bedrooms upstairs and a new toilet.

The work was promised for before the new season, so we half unpacked the chalet at Easter and enjoyed the holiday. We left the polythene bags on the mattresses and slipped and slid in our sleep!

Granny packed everything up again. This time the builder came and did the work. Granny crept one evening after the work was finished. It was perfect. She didn’t dare say out loud that it was perfect, in case she found something that wasn’t. But it was.

The new double bedroom at the back of the chalet had hardly changed. Now it was possible to put up a mirror and cost hooks.

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At the front of the chalet is a brand new twin bed room. This will be the girls’ room and the boys will have the bunk bed room downstairs.

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But you should see the toilet floor! Granny found an off cut in the carpet shop that was just right: Paul Smith stripes. Son in law has a fondness for all things Paul Smith. When the family saw the floor, the immediately made the connection.