Summer Holidays: ice skates, ski boots and blisters

Or: How To Have As Much Fun As Possible With Your Children In Just Three Hours.

Step 1. Strap your feet into a pair of ski boots and walk uncomfortably around until you locate a pair of skis. Put your skis on and slide gracefully down a gentle dry-ski slope. Take skis off. Trudge back up the slope. Put the skis back on and slide down again.

Repeat until your hour is up, or until one of your children gets injured.

Step 2: Ditch the skis and ski boots, but stay on the dry-ski slope. Now it’s time for sno-tubing. Trudge up a steeper slope, pulling a sno-tube behind you. Sit in it at the top of the slope and slide quickly down the slope. Climb out of your sno-tube and take it back up to the top of the slope. Slide down again.

Repeat until your hour is up, or until you are too tired to continue. Hint: your children will never be tired of this.

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Step 3: Hand over your comfortable shoes to a stranger behind a counter and wait for them to exchange your shoes for a pair of lethal looking boots, with blades attached.

Squeeze your feet into these boots (which, by the way, will look and feel far too small for your feet) and tightly lace them up. Attempt to walk around. Fail. Stand up and try again.

Walk awkwardly to the ice rink. Step on the ice. Flail your arms around in a hopeless attempt to keep your balance. Fall down. Get up again. Fall down. Get up again. Grab onto the side rail and slowly move around. Congratulations! You are ice skating!

Step 4: Drive home, and enjoy the unusual sense of calm in the car while your children sleep in the back, exhausted.

Step 5: Discover that your feet are covered in blisters. Don’t worry, this is a sign that you have had lots of fun. Walk around barefoot for a week and your feet will return to normal.

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