Why are visitors tiring?

We don’t have grandchildren at the moment. And our sons are both over 30. So it is some time since we have looked after children. It was with some trepidation as well as excitement that we looked forward this week to thirteen and fourteen year old boys staying with us for a couple of days on the boat. Noah is our great nephew, and Ewan is his friend. The good news is that neither was a surly teenager with his head in an electronic device. Rather, both were extremely helpful, and on Wednesday we went down 26 locks with them. A great experience, including the famous Wigan flight of 21 locks.

We had a really good time with the boys, including too much junk food and pop, but also teaching them our favourite game of cards, as well as how to steer a narrowboat. What I had not expected was that by the end of the two days I would be completely knackered. Despite the boys being very helpful throughout, and despite them being old enough to keep themselves amused, I was reminded how much attention visitors require, especially in the confines of a boat.

Mandy and I are still in our fifties, so hardly old fogies, and we are looking forward this weekend to seeing Mandy’s brother, Andrew, and our newly qualified doctor niece, Zoë. But we are also looking forward to next week when it will be back to just the two of us.

When we lived in a house we always enjoyed having visitors and equally when they left. The boat just exaggerates this.

How about you? Do you prefer visitors arriving or leaving?