A weekend in Center Parcs

Over the Bank Holiday weekend, I visited the Sherwood Forest Center Parcs with Hannah and my family. As usual, I took at least one camera. I decided to take my trusty DSLR, as well a newly-bought waterproof 35mm camera, as we were intending to go swimming and canoeing.

I shall try to piece my holiday together from the various photos I took on my digital and two films. Obviously the digital photos have the time stamped into the file, but the film photos don’t.

Upon arriving at the villa, we had a walk around. The surroundings were very pleasant – lots of trees, and only a few paces to a small lake where there were ducks, swans, moorhens and other birds too.

This duck was paddling cautiously in the shallow part of the lake with all the confidence and enjoyment of a young child on Blackpool beach in November.

Later on, we had a barbecue. As usual, Dad set fire to everything except the coals (but including the food). However, the smoke billowing from our dinner looked pretty as the sun shone through it.

For those who have never been to Center Parcs, there’s a large boating lake with an artificial beach (yep – some 50 miles from the sea!). Now using my waterproof camera, I tried to finish some black & white film so I could get some colour film loaded before we went canoeing.

Walking back to the villa, my brother Oliver passed us on his bike. This photo was my runner-up for the “sport and action” Photo Challenge.

Now with colour film in the waterproof camera, Hannah and I took to the water in canoes.

The lake was too murky to get any decent shots under the water. The camera was great though – not only was it safe when it inevitably got wet, but it floats so you can simply throw it to somebody else. That’s how Hannah took my photo.

After a while our bums were so wet and and our fingers were so cold and numb that we headed back. A little later, I returned to the shore of the lake with my DSLR and a long lens.

These people look like they are having a lovely, relaxing ride in a pedalo.

And these boys are clearly having fun splashing around in canoes.

Unfortunately, this girl and her brother look utterly miserable. I guess the moral of the story is “love many, trust few: always paddle your own canoe”.

I repeatedly forgot to take the waterproof camera to the swimming pool, where the water is actually clear enough for it to be used underwater. Never mind – there’ll be other occasions.

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