herald

Friday 15 December 2017

Keep your darts, I'll play with toy guns

Some people never really grow up, myself included. I still play Monopoly and Trivial Pursuit, and love nothing more than being let loose in amusement arcades.

Before motherhood, when out shopping, I used to glance enviously at toddlers going up and down on Bob the Builder machines. I used to wonder if anyone would notice if I put in a coin and slipped in beside Bob. It wasn't easy trying to refrain myself.

On holidays, the kiddie pool is often more appealing because it's warmer and the slide less dangerous. Kids' clubs in hotels are also usually more exciting than the dreary talent shows they put on at night to entertain the adults.

Recently, I stayed in one such hotel with baby Gary. On the first day, the girl who was supervising the kids' club looked at Gary doubtfully. "You have to be four," she said.

I was very disappointed. I mean it looked like such a fun place with a ball crawl, lots of toy cars and huge beanie bags.

"He's only one," I said, dejectedly. "Well, then you'll have to stay with him," the supervisor insisted. I could hardly contain my joy.

There was only one other child in the playroom. Aged about seven he was playing guns with toy soldiers. Gary and I stuck to the less violent Lego collection. After a while I noticed the boy looking over with increased interest. Eventually he wandered over.

"Are you a child or an adult?" he asked.

"Me?" I was flummoxed. I mean it's nice to be thought of as young-looking but how could anybody mistake me for a child?

"I'm an adult," I said, gently. His little face fell. "So you don't want to play soldiers?" I thought about it for a second. I really didn't want to let him down. It must be awful to be an only child on holiday. "Okay then," I said, picking up one of the toy swords enthusiastically.

Then a man wandered in holding a beer. Turns out he was the child's dad.

"What time is the darts competition on at?" he asked. "I don't know," I shrugged. "I'm not part of the entertainment team."

He gave me a funny look. Maybe he thought I was an oddball. I wouldn't blame him. Then again, what's the difference between throwing darts and brandishing a toy sword? I reckon we're all just big kids at heart.

Promoted articles

Entertainment News