Purple sick and other stories

Nicola Adam
Nicola Adam

What was your favourite childhood memory?

As you become older, those hazy recollections become more precious, seen through the rose-tinted spectacles of time and often glossed to suit. Those golden moments, for me certainly, seemed pretty hand-made.

Playing in the street, building a den, winning a bag of chocolate in a raffle - it is these things that loom large for most - making you think the inordinate amounts of pressure placed on parents today to build expensive, award-winning, childhoods for their children may be a bit misplaced.

I felt a little sorry for my sister this week, who has just returned from a glorious week on the sunny coast with her husband and my niece and nephew where they experienced, as a family unit, treats ranging from speedboats, to zoos, to theme parks , candy floss and multiple other indulgences.

In other words, glorious, quality, family-time to remember forever, presumably at the cost equivalent to a small mortgage.

Reunited with their Auntie Nic, (I was wedged in between their car seats on a day out - an auntie’s lot) I asked them to pick one favourite thing each from their holiday to tell me.

My niece was a little unsure, eventually proclaiming the moment a giant seagull stole her brother’s sausage roll as a winner.

Not a classic but understandable.

However the youngest, my nephew, had no doubt whatsoever about his.

The wind in his hair on the speedboat or the loop the loop at the theme park?

Erm, no.

‘It was the purple sick,’ he proclaimed loudly and with a certain amount of pride.

The purple sick, I inquired, with slight dread.

Dread, I fear that was justified.

It emerged he drank too much blackcurrant juice on the long journey home and projectile vomited it across the car.

‘Lovely,’ I replied.

‘Yes, lovely,’ said my sister, rather crossly at her parental family time fail and children’s general lack of loyalty.

‘And’, piped up my darling niece, giggling into her hands.

‘There was a massive pool of sick just where you are sitting. It’s all sticky!”

Like I said, valuable childhood memories they will hold onto forever.

As will my cream coat.