We love Kodomo interviews that are searingly honest about how hard parenting can be, loving and very funny all at once – Tom Price, actor and stand up comic, has given us just that. He has had roles in Diary of a Call Girl, Torchwood and The Boat That Rocked, amongst many others, he is married to producer Beth Morrey with whom he has two sons and you can currently catch him both on BBC iPlayer in Tourist Trap and on Magic Radio’s Weekend Breakfast Show.
Q: What is your first childhood memory of travel?
Being sick in the back of a car going to Devon. You did ask. It’s either that or a family trip to Florence where it was incredibly hot and I walked everywhere. Literal hell for a 6 year old. And yet last summer I took my kids on as many summer walks as possible.
Q: Where have you had your best holiday to date?
Australia, when I was 20. I persuaded the girl I was travelling with to get dreadlocks on the day we arrived, and we then shared hostel rooms with the smell of ammonia for 6 weeks. In the end it was one of the best adventures of my life. A small town boy thrown into one of the most stunning countries in the world. Getting through about two bottles of sun cream an hour. Perfect.
Q: Where was the first place you went with a little one in tow? How did it go?
Brittany. Our son was 2 months old and we thought we needed a holiday because life had suddenly become immeasurably exhausting. A holiday would solve everything, surely?! It hadn’t occurred to us, weirdly, that it would just be the same sleep deprivation, but this time in a renovated barn. That was a long week.
Q: How do you find the experience of travelling with children?
It depends. If everything goes to plan then it’s a great opportunity to bond, spend time with them, talk about what’s flying past the window. If, however, your Eurostar breaks down and your train goes back to the nearest station which turns out to be EuroDisney, where you have to wait for two hours while your children watch loads of other kids go to meet Mickey Mouse, it can be quite stressful. Thankfully Eurostar customer services were fantastic and gave us a full refund for the £1000 I’d spent on the tickets. Oh no, wait, that last sentence was a complete lie.
Do you ever travel with your children for work?
Very rarely. In fact the only example that springs out for me was when our first son had terrible Colic and the only thing that kept him from crying was being in the car seat, so my wife came to a gig with me in Cambridge. He was only five weeks old; he was tiny and mewling. When we got there all the other comics, normally hardened grizzly cynical folk, became cooing kittens delighted and thrilled to see a baby. It was a life lesson: as soon as you have kids nothing else matters. I loved that moment.
Q: Where was your best holiday with your child?
Provence. Perfect weather, glorious villages to visit, lovely big cottage with a pool and lots of space. And great food. I had enough time to read and relax, but also plenty of time with my kids to play board games, go on bike rides, jump in and out of the pool for hours on end and also play the incredibly intense “nighttime Sardines.” That didn’t last long – my three year old got scared.
Q: And your worst?
Staying in a rainy and cold and very tiny fisherman’s beach shack in Whitstable. The dog ate a load of dead birds on the beach and managed to re-carpet the entire building in vomit. All four of us sat on a bed looking at rain outside, and vomit inside. Terrible times.
Q: What is your must-have travel accessory when away with children?
Forget travel chess or travel sweets. Someone needs to invent a travel trampoline. As soon as my kids have a trampoline they’re happy. Someone needs to invent one ASAP. OK fine – iPad.
Q: And top tips for travel with kids?
I think the most important thing is to plan everything to within an inch of your life. Take 23 000 packed lunches. Leave early so they sleep for the first bit. Have LOADS of travel games ready. And buy a travel trampoline. Obviously.
Picture credit: Stephanie Yt.