English is our Business

Some Brits abroad - Part 1

September 18, 2015

The sun-tans have now begun to fade and the summer holidays are a distant memory…all in all a good time to reflect. So before autumn ‘half-term’ holidays become the ‘focus’ for those desperate for R & R. what about those iconic holiday moments and experiences?

Modern life dictates that truly original holiday destinations and experiences are, like the wildlife we are looking to find them in, becoming increasingly scarce. We live in a global village, over-inhabited, more accessible than ever, we have more readily available and cheaper transport than ever. In general it has become very difficult to find somewhere to holiday where you won’t hear a voice from your own nation. Well at least the idea was nice!

It is, of course, completely futile to think we are entitled to any such privilege as being able to pick and choose who can share your hard-earned holiday with you. That is why sharing your holiday experiences with others is so interesting. Finally a chance for a bit of ‘schadenfreude’ as friends or acquaintances reel off their list of holiday nightmares.

I never cease to become completely perplexed when people summon me to attention and reel off a list of complaints about football shirt wearing, tattoo bearing, swearing, lairing, non-caring Brits. Yep. It gets worse, they were sun-burnt and didn’t care, they were drunk and didn’t care….If I didn’t know better I’d take a wild stab in the dark and suggest that they were probably enjoying themselves. Hey, isn’t that how it works; you save hard to party hard, relax and let your hair down, everyone of course in their own , unique holiday style. I am ever making the point, that whilst I do own football shirts, I only wear them when playing sport, I have no Tattoos (but who cares?), I make a concerted effort not to swear in public, avoid sun-burn (but hey it hurts and you can get skin cancer) and I only drink wine (not completely true but a bit of poetic licence never did any harm). 

After my initial shock, empathy and understanding take over, but also anger. Feel free to vent your frustrations and disappointment in my fellow British Passport bearers, but what I have I got to do with it, and why generalize so easily; “you British”. What do people mean when they say that? Is it aimed at all sixty million of us, or just the ones that go on holiday, or the ones they ‘shared’ a holiday with? But these are people I like so I am obliged to act interested. I ask them where they specifically were when the ‘Brit-mare’ occurred. The Costa Brava, The Costa del Sol, Ibiza, The Greek Islands…all very exclusive and not places made very cheaply available to British holiday makers for the last thirty years then! Retribution takes over, You Dutch then in Salou, the Turkish Riviera and some Austrian ski resorts etc. etc. The funny thing is the Dutch lapped up the ‘quality’ television programmes based on the concept of the British hit –show ‘The Villa’. Disgusted yet entertained, it’s like Roman times!

I love to travel but then again I have got a great excuse, it’s this brilliant Passport:

‘Her Britannic Majesty’s Secretary of State requests and requires in the name of Her Majesty all those whom it may concern to allow the bearer to pass freely without let or hindrance and to afford the bearer such assistance and protection as may be necessary.’

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