During the train journey, Mum, Edna and I were wondering what the sea would be like and would it frighten us! The steam train finally arrived at Margate, the sun was shining brightly and Dad carried the suitcases – he must have felt very hot dressed in a suit, collar and tie, as always. Dad asked for directions to the guesthouse, and on turning the corner we saw the sea. It was magnificent, blue and sparkling, the sands were golden and there was the sound of laughter. There were shrieks of delight coming from children paddling in the sea and others making sand castles.
As we looked along the front we saw ice creams and spun sugar for sale, and a man selling chestnuts. From the nearby pub we could hear the drinkers, their voices raised singing, “Oh, I do like to be beside the seaside.” I gasped with delight at the picture, a memory that would stay with me always. Gone was the first fear of seeing the sea; it was now replaced with an impatience to paddle in it and make sandcastles.
The lady at the boarding house was very pleasant and had a good meal waiting for us. So we spent a carefree week, paddling and eating lots of ice cream. The week ended with us all looking very brown and healthy. When I was much older I found a postcard that my father had sent his brother saying, “The holiday is wonderful and the children are enjoying it so much” – how right he was.