A little while ago I saw some sweeping shots of the Pembrokeshire Coast in Wales on one of those BBC Sunday night programmes. I can't remember if it was Countryfile or Coast or Strictly but the views were spectacular.
I turned to my wife and commented that I'd love to walk the coastline when the children were old enough to not require reins on clifftops.
A few days later I was discussing this with my mother who reminded me that we had spent a week walking the Pembrokeshire Coastal Path when I was nine. She explained that I had complained for the whole week that I was having to carry my own bag. I sensed there was a slight resentment in her tone, despite the passing of time.
The pieces gradually fell into place and I started to recall the three memories I have of the holiday.
Firstly, I remember eating some Kendal mint cake whilst sitting on a rock.
Secondly, I remember playing table tennis in some sort of self-catering accommodation. I'm afraid I can't remember who won, so it was probably my brother.
Finally - and most vividly - there was the Subbuteo shop in Aberystwyth which was inexplicably half the price of my local supplier. I was overwhelmed and ended up cleaning the car twice in a week in an effort to earn extra pocket money so that I could buy a scoreboard and a set of throw-in men.
You will notice that I have absolute no memory of Pembrokeshire's vast cliffs, its beautiful sandy beaches or the diverse wildlife which has found a home along the route. I have no recollection of the views or the crashing waves although I do still have the scoreboard.
This appalling memory of holidays and days out is a recurring theme. Not long ago I commented that whilst growing up on the Isle of Wight we never went to Sandown - one of the busiest resorts. The same day I found a school diary with a detailed account of a trip to Sandown and no suggestion that this was unusual.
I don't think my memory is the problem but I think the things you look for in a holiday as a child are very different from those you want as an adult. Viewpoints and walks were utterly tedious until I reached adulthood - now I would love to spend a few hours exploring a stretch of coastline on foot.
So what's the answer? Should we take our offspring on child-friendly holidays involving a whole week spent in soft play and touring round toy shops? Or a week sat round a swimming pool whilst a man dressed as a dog provides daily entertainment? I can't really think of anything worse.
I like to think that my parents' insistence on holidays which involved walking, views and history did spark some kind of interest in those sort of things, even if it took me 20 years to realise that I enjoyed myself.
I also naively think that my children will be different and that for some reason they will enjoy walking holidays and National Trust properties.
That's nonsense of course but as long as I can fit in a trip to a toy shop on route, I might just get away with it.
Holiday Park Guru Blog
Occasional thoughts on holidays in England, Wales and Scotland