Hollywell Bay, Here We Come!

It was my first ever trip away from home and family. A School trip for an only child.

(My Grandparents had their own off-licence in North London – just in case you think the worst of how the coin was acquired!)







On a cold morning
Many moons ago,
I stood with trembling heart,
Hand in Hand with Granny.
‘Are you excited?’ She asked.
I smiled with lies in my eyes
A masque of innocence
On every pore and cranny.
Grandpa pressed a large coin
Into my free hand palm,
And gently secured it tight –
Folding my fingers over.
My divining sense knew it;
Knew where it came from,
What it was – a half-crown.
I could see him open the till
And select the shiniest coin
To give me security and Strength.
I needed those two shields,
And I felt them too
As my left foot, risen,
Secured the bus’s first step.
The weight of my new rucksack
Pulling to reverse my climb –
‘A small step for mankind’
Had not then been spoken,
But still, I took a giant leap –
Toward the camping trip from hell…

Hollywell Bay, here we come!


© griffonner 2023
Views: 431
critique and comments welcome.
Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

I connected with as I was a rather timid little boy and even though I never went on camping trips, I still remember the feelings I had when I first attended primary and later secondary school. Things did change, however, when I went on a school trip to Germany when I was about fourteen. It was supposed to help us learn more German but mostly we leaned how to smoke, drink and chat up frauleins. (can’t do the umaut)



As Guaj said, times change and what seemed hell to a young child become treasured memories in later years.
A very enjoyable poem, Griffonner.


Pretty much how I felt about my first days at a new school 🙂


Oh my! How I too remember the feeling of a half crown in my hand. It was a small fortune and felt like I had won the pools. 😉 On first reading I laughed. It could come over as funny along the lines of “Hello Mother, Hello Father here we are at Camp Granada” However, on second reading, I realised that this was a very scary experience for a young boy (only child) amid the hustle and bustle of those sorts of outings. So many of us realise now, just how risky, being put into the care of people who… Read more »


The dread of the unknown. You have rekindled memories of childhood school trips. The feelings of insecurity and nervousness. Excellent.

Flag Content