My Daughter’s Secret
There is nothing quite like being told someone has a surprise for you!
The anticipation, build up and excitement can be just as exciting as the surprise itself.
As a parent, I have sprung a few surprises on my children over the years and the joy of their reaction and pleasure, is both rewarding and satisfying beyond words.
Suddenly, one day there was a reversal of roles in the family…..
It was a month before Christmas 1998 and the telephone rang, it was Cloverleaf and she had a secret.
She had instructions for myself and my son Richard.
1. Book 4 days annual leave from work 30th December - January 3rd
2. Organise travel insurance.
3. Pack a suitcase, include some warm clothes.
4. You will need a passport.
We bombarded her with questions incessantly over the next few weeks, but she stood firm and would not reveal anything.
Had that been my secret I would have caved in, if only to shut us up!
Every day the secret was our main topic of conversation, we dreamed up all kinds of crazy ideas, we analysed every word she had said and still we had no idea what the surprise could possibly be.
We decided the passport had to be a ‘red herring’ surely there was no way she could afford to take us abroad.
Christmas arrived and as planned Cloverleaf came to stay with us for a week.
Our suitcases were packed in readiness and although Christmas was lovely we were anxiously counting the minutes until 30th December.
Richard and I were quite simply out of control and playing the role of an harassed parent, Cloverleaf had to reprimand us on several occasions.
We were told to ‘calm down’ and we were threatened with ‘or else we won’t go!”
Naturally the words fell on deaf ears and we were as excited as ever.
At long last the day arrived and still Cloverleaf would not reveal anything.
However she did insist on doing a passport check before we climbed into the taxi (maybe the passports weren’t a red herring!)
Finally we set off.
It wasn’t until we were seated on a bus and the driver picked up the microphone to make an announcement, that we finally found out where we were heading.
“Welcome everyone to our trip to Disneyland Paris"
After the initial jubilation and celebration, the hugs, tears and kisses we finally settled down and enjoyed the journey to Disneyland, much to Cloverleaf’s relief.
Upon arrival at Disneyland, as if by magic, Cloverleaf produced our two day pass into the park and on both days we were up at dawn to make the most of the time we had there.
I don’t think anyone could have possibly crammed in any more than we did!
What a magical place this is, age has no boundaries here - this is a place of fantasy and fairy tales, wonderful characters from childhood stories, to feel and touch that magic is a wonderful, fun experience.
New Years Eve - it’s celebrated with the most awesome firework display we have ever seen, what a way to celebrate the beginning of 1999!
Cloverleaf later revealed she had been planning and saving for this surprise for 12 months.
She admitted she had been very close to disclosing the secret on numerous occasions and had surprised herself that she was able to keep a secret for such a long time.
It was just the best time darling, from both Richard and me thank you again, we will treasure these memories always.