I normally do my grocery shopping on a Saturday. Or, if I’m really lucky, I get to do the hoovering and washing. Great eh? But you know what? Sometimes, if I’m particularly canny about it … I bunk off. I take myself to the bottom of the garden and sunbathe. Or I go to the café and drink lattes and read the papers. OR … it has even been known for me to sneak a liquid lunch in with my BFF. I highly recommend it.
Last Saturday, however, surpassed everything. I bunked off again … but this time I went to Brighton with Living Social, the daily deals site. “To eat candyfloss and throw chips at the pigeons?” I hear you ask? Erm, no, not this time anyway. No, this time I just happened to go yachting and power boat racing. I know! Check my bad self out!
Let me explain …
I’ve used Living Social before … (read about Zoo Lates here,) and so I know the brand. I’ve met the people that work there and they’re so enthusiastic about the company, it’s infectious. For those who don’t know about Living Social , please read about them here. They rock.
So … they invited myself, along with a few other bloggers, including my friend Monika, to take part in their new ‘Adventures.’ These are bespoke, very unique days out that combine a number of activities. They’ve had wine-tasting events, salsa dancing, cocktail making – basically, all the things I love. The event I was invited to, however, kinda scared the bejesus out of me. I can swim, yes, but swim in the shark infested waters* of Brighton? Erm, not so much. My plan for the day, therefore, was just not to fall in.
(* probably not.)
We met up with a group of people who had paid for the experience and boarded a coach that came to pick us up in Covent Garden. We were slightly late leaving … nothing whatsoever to do with my having to get a coffee before we left. Nothing. Whatsoever. Thankfully, they were a friendly bunch and I didn’t get daggers like you get if you’re the last one on an airplane. Result.
We set off but got caught in horrific traffic in London so arrived in Brighton an hour late. Living Social had four members of staff on board to organise us all and ensure that we were all wearing our pirate eye patches. (I was, but only to keep my hair out of my face. Think I may have missed the point somewhat.) After a little competition to see who could ‘YARRR’ the loudest (we wuz robbed,) we got off the coach and made our way quick sharp to Brighton Marina.
After being split into two groups, the first group set off on their leisurely yacht sailing trip. Of course, I was in the other group and within ten minutes, we were power boating! There was an option to go on the Zapcat … a smaller version of the power boat that quite frankly was too quick and too scary for my liking, (nothing whatsoever to do with the fact that you have to wear a wetsuit – have you seen my ‘girls??’) The braver half of the group did go on the Zapcats though and I’m sure their screams were of pleasure and not of sheer horror. Quite sure.
We drove out of the marina slowly on the power boat and I thought, you know what, I can handle this. It’s not so bad. Little did I realize we hadn’t actually started yet. Suffice to say, an hour later I had very little voice left, my thighs were burning through having to brace myself when we took off – actually took off into the air – and, well, this little video shows you how I felt …
Would I do it again? HELL YEAH! I might not be getting any younger, (good job I still look … *ahem* … 23 …) but there are times when you just have let your hair down and do something that’s so completely outside of your comfort zone … just because.
I felt disappointed but also slightly relieved when it was time to swap. My thighs can only take so much. We all went back to the marina and my group swapped with the other group and we went on board the yacht.
Our skipper took us out of the marina and one of the guests took over from steering. Now, I’m not saying I’m a control freak or anything but I really wanted to skipper the boat! When the skipper asked if anyone else wanted to try it and stuck my hand in the air like a schoolgirl! I then ended up driving sailing the boat for the next hour.
I even did a 3 point turn at one point. I was turning corners, reversing (not strictly true,) and I even sailed the boat back into the marina between the bouys when it was time to go back. It was SO much fun! Such a chilled experience, a great opportunity to chat with the other people in my group and the scenery was amazing. We were really blessed with perfect weather and the water was so calm we even had to have the engine on.
We got back to the marina (in one piece!) collected our belongings and made our way to the Yacht Club for a special barbeque that had been laid on for us. We were pushed for time as we’d got to Brighton so late, so it was good that the food was already ready. It wasn’t just bangers and ketchup either. Home made burgers, freshly caught grilled fish, spicy chicken skewers, home made coleslaw, potatoes, pitta bread …. Ooh I’m getting hungry again so I’ll stop there. The quality of the food was excellent and the fact that we were eating right by the sea just made it all the more special.
By the time we had boarded the coach, we were bang on schedule and ready to make our way back to London. Inspired choice of DVD for our return leg of the journey, as Anchorman had us all in stitches – at least those of us who hadn’t been knocked out by all that sea air.
Conclusion: I may be 23 now but there’s life in the old (sea) dog yet! I urge you all just to bunk off and do something mad too … you might want to do some squats beforehand though.
* I wasn’t paid to write this review although I did received the Adventure free of charge. All opinions, as ever, are my own.