I KNEW there was a good reason for worrying about The Offspring’s recent caving holiday.

But I didn’t find out until they’d been dallying in a Welsh caving system for several days just how much I should be fretting.

During the week The Girl rang her father to tell him that there had been an accident and a member of their party was the focus of an underground drama

“One of the lads broke his ankle and it took Cave Rescue hours to get him out,” The Man-in-Charge explained later.

It transpired that the rescue took 10 back-breaking hours, hauling the injured one on a stretcher through miles of caves. As one of the caving club’s most experienced members he’d been deep within the cave system. They finally broke the surface at 3.30am in the morning.

Such stories are every parents’ nightmare and my heart immediately went out to his mum and dad.

But then a niggling thought occurred to me. “Did anyone contact his parents?” I asked The Girl.

She looked askance. “No, why should they? He’s all grown up.”

One day she will understand that as far as a parent is concerned their offspring are never fully grown up. We want to be there for them when things go wrong. And we never stop worrying.

l Some things are just wrong. Like chocolate with Marmite.

We were given two bars of this strange delicacy by a relative who thinks we are adventurous with food and therefore prepared to sully our tastebuds with weird concoctions.

I took one bite and decided the only thing it did for the chocolate was spoil it.

However, having taken the rejected bars of chocolate to work I found that my colleagues, without exception, thought it was not just acceptable, but actually quite edible.

Perhaps I can add faulty tastebuds to my list of ailments.