Why do we go on holiday, especially special far-flung holidays where we cannot speak the local language, where we have little or no knowledge of the local food or water resources, and where we are placing our safety in the hands of strangers who will have no concern or knowledge of us or our requirements for little more than a few days
This was the question I found myself as, sitting down and planning for an up and coming holiday to Switzerland, staring out at my garden and at one of my cats who was cautiously sniffing around
It’s a curious thing we do, going away on holiday, and as I sat there laughing at myself for my own irational stupidity I asked myself one further question.
What if we had to justify our actions to an impartial stranger, and a stranger who challenged our actions on the grounds of us being animals, mammals in fact and nothing more. What justification would we have, apart from the contrariness and curiosity of Man?
Well lets look at the list below, this are just a few of the comments we might make to support our cause.
- we need a change
- it’s good to get away
- it’s good to relax and have a stress free holiday
- We can get a good sun tan
- we can experience new things
- we can learn about new cultures
- holidays are good for us
- It gives us something to remember
- It gives us something to talk about
- It gives us something to look forward to every year
Hmmm I wonde…… what replies might come back in return
- Why, most animals, unless driven to new ground by migratory needs, stay put in what they believe to be as safe an area as possible?
- If we leave such an area to go somewhere where the availability of food, water, shelter and safety are questionable, is it really god to get away?
- This is possible, and if you normally live in an unhealthy or dangerous area then even more so, but to go away you often need money, and if you have money why would you live in such areas? In addition relaxation and stress relief are generally sourced with safe area-see points 1/ and 2/
- And risk melanoma…ok!
- Yes that is possible, so why do we generally return with trinkets, baubles, and memories which all to often quickly fade with time
- How can a new culture be absorbed in a matter of a few weeks, when it takes a lifetime to throughly absorb our own. Plus, if we wish to integrate into the local community, why do we yearn for familiar food, entertainment, booze, and cultural values
- Some holidays can be god or us, but what of the inevitable hangover when we return. If our life is so good we wouldn’t need a holiday, so rather like recovering from a night on the tiles, the bigger the celebration, the worse the hangover the following day.
- Quite true. The iffy food and water, the langauge barrier, the airport delays etc etc; oh yes, and occasionally what we experienced when we were abroad
- See point 8/
- see points 1/-9/
The amazing thing is we still look forward to such things, and still save up frantically so that such an object of desire can be held in the hand, and so it is that I end up by actually praise humanity in this paradoxical pursuit of happiness. Not only that, to pursue the analogy further, how many of us get drunk and then, with the mother of all hangovers, utter the immortal phrase
“Never again. never ever again”
Before once more planning next weekends booze up
What is remarkable is that some holidays work so well that they defy all such criticism. They do work, and they do leave behind memories that last a life time, yet as I sit here typing away merrily, with an open suitcase beside me, I am looking out of the window at my cat who is now blissfully stretched out in the sunshine. My wife and I often call him stupid because of the way he just lies there, but then who is stupid, and who is the fool?
He is safe in his known environment. He knows he will get fed and watered, and will always have a warm lap to sit upon. We will soon be going away on holiday to a hotel we have never visited, serving unknown food and water of unknown quality. We will be part of a group of 30 strangers, and being supervised by a tour guide whose name and character as yet remain unknown
Never mind. I’m sure it will be a wonderful holiday. We have been looking forward to it for weeks now, it’s been in the planning pipeline for ages, and anyway; we’re going away on holiday; and don’t we all go on holiday to have a good time!
Wherever you go please have a agood holiday, but before you go just click on this link about 7 reasons not to go on holiday. I went there and found myself laughing out loud!
Oh yes. please, please enjoy the following videos
Oh yes, of course, in the best of possible taste…hurrah for Sir Cliff…yahhh!…nurse….nurse!