SFX Weekender: The Other Side
Sunday, February 07, 2010
In the days to come we will be posting all sorts of luscious details about our weekend away in Camber, Sussex. (For example! We met the author of Doctor Screw!) For tonight, however, Pornokitsch is delighted to bring you a few photos of the non-geeky bits - or, in some cases, the less geeky bits - of the SFX Weekender.
Pontin's. This was the first time either of us had ever visited an English holiday camp. The accommodation was pretty grim, the row upon row of dilapidated "chalets" recalling nothing so much as the abandoned motels along Route 66. (Though perhaps less atmospheric.)
(I'm not exaggerating when I tell you that Pontin's Camber Sands looks exactly like the apartment complex where I lived while in law school, a converted Korean War-era barracks in Davis, California. That particular experience also included black widow spiders; which was the more horrifying experience I leave for you to speculate.)
We even had our horror-movie moment this weekend when, upon opening a chest of drawers in our bedroom to put our clothes away, we found the following two inscriptions:
Briefly, they read "I AM ADAM I AM 18 GIRL'S CALL ME / TEXT ... pontins is crap they don't care about your complaints" and "PONTINS IS CRAP From James age 12... Butlins 100% better"
And we had bonus roommates! We woke up this morning to find slug trails all over our chalet's carpet.
We did, however, also have the surreal and wonderful sight of a pack of Storm Troopers and several Tenth Doctors acting as an unofficial Weekender greeting committee, demanding that drivers put up their hands and show ID before permitting entrance into the park.
Less adorably menacing and more flat-out terrifying was the enormous paper-mache octopus coiled around the foyer and main staircase of the facilities building:
Pontin's does have one major thing going for it - it's next to a gorgeous beach, chock-full of dunes and shells and pleasant people out walking their dogs. I, being a damnably early riser, even had the opportunity to catch a sunrise or two.
And here's your fun fact for the day - this same peaceful beach is where the D Day landing scenes in the classic The Longest Day (1962, starring every actor alive in 1962), were filmed. And, my British friends remind me, where the equally classic Carry On Follow that Camel was filmed in 1967. Which probably explains my eerie compulsion to find and follow camels on Twitter this afternoon.
We rounded out our weekend with multiple pots of tea and piles of bacon sandwiches this morning. One cannot think ill of an adventure that includes piles of bacon sandwiches.
(Not pictured: being locked out of our chalet in the freezing cold last night thanks to a sticky bolting mechanism; rubber sheets on the beds; bonus roommate slugs; "please encourage your children to visit the restroom before using the swimming pool"; seagulls of enormous size and grumpy disposition.)
(Seriously. these gulls were positively Hitchcockian. I didn't take any pictures for fear of being set upon.)