Blaise Tapp writes: The Easter school holidays are the first time in more than two years that the majority have been allowed to travel to most tourist destinations, pretty much restriction free, not to mention the fact that lots more people now feel brave enough to step onto foreign soil.
If you are not already fed up with Big Mike from the office’s tedious travelogue from somewhere all-inclusive then you soon will be, largely because it won’t be long before the world and his second wife are at it. Airport terminals are busy again and people are, quite literally, sleeping in their cars as they wait to catch a ferry from Dover – the great getaway has well and truly begun.
Well, not quite. Here at Tapp Towers we have no plans to venture beyond these shores this year, unless, that is, that you class the Isle of Wight as overseas. It isn’t, even though the cost of getting there in early summer would suggest otherwise.
While we had very briefly considered travelling somewhere warm and where they don’t have Greggs, we quickly decided against it, largely because we have become used to holidaying exclusively in the UK and, at the moment, the mere prospect of overseas travel exhausts us. A succession of trips underneath the Channel have fallen victim to the pandemic in the last 24 months and each time we had to make last minute alternative plans.
Arranging a new family holiday in just a couple of days is a faff that anybody who is in need of a break can do without, so this year we’ve decided not to take the risk and, as a result, we won’t need to venture to the Bureau de Change, even if I could find one.
While it is nice to soak up different cultures, not to mention quaff good wine without having to consult your bank manager, there is something thrilling about visiting somewhere new in the British Isles. There are places that Mrs Tapp won’t travel to, especially anywhere which is more than six hours car travel away, because that is the maximum amount of time she can cope with my running commentary about the competency of other road users.
This rules out Scotland and anywhere West of Cardiff as last year’s nine hour slog to Cardigan Bay was enough to put Jeremy Clarkson off driving. The Lakes are also sadly out, as are the Norfolk Broads, but this has nothing to do with projected travel times and more to do with the fact that it’s never a good idea to spend a week on a boat with a rambunctious six year old.
Later this month we will head down to the South West, where I will attempt to eat my own bodyweight in pasties and scones while insisting on wearing shorts, even if temperatures fail to rise above 12 degrees.
I will be doing my bit to boost the economies of Cornwall and Devon, which is further justification for not stepping foot on a plane in the next 12 months.
Foreign travel will happen for us at some point in the future, but until that day comes I will continue to enjoy eating ice creams on a windy beach while trying not to get my waterproof jacket dirty.
Nothing beats holidaying in this country, even when everybody else is showing off about being abroad.