WE’VE just returned from a short holiday. It was planned by She Who Knows and our first coach holiday, all the way to Lynton, in rugged North Devon.
We picked up our main coach at an extremely busy Stretton Interchange, near Warrington, from an early morning feeder coach from Freckleton – reached by taxi from home.
Fortunately, our timing was immaculate and Shearings didn’t let us down. But then I had plenty of time, thanks to motorway traffic jams, to consider how my holidays have changed.
Long ago I travelled light, spurned organised group outings and sought out places of character – however uncomfortable.
These days I’m concerned about luggage limits, ‘superior’ rooms with sea views, latest breakfast times and, finally, dining at a window table.
On the coach we were surely the youngest – some of them even had ‘walkers’. But then, catching a glimpse of myself in a window reflection, my sparse grey hair and comfortable frame fitted right in.
Still, there was much to admire in fellow passengers. A couple of old ladies pushed and shoved a bit, then talked too loud – until falling asleep. However, most of them took traffic delays and packed service stations in their stride, with good manners and humour.
Britain, it seems, is now full up, though someone forgot to put out the ‘No Vacancies’ sign. I also have a new hero, replacing childhood holiday ones like muscle-bound lifeguards or dashing entertainers who wooed the girls.
Now it’s our coach driver who has my admiration – and gratitude; shortening the journey and keeping us safe, plus other smaller services with a smile to boost our comfort.
It was all worthwhile to see quaint Lynmouth far below our superior room with breathtaking sea views, then go down and dine – at our window table.
All too soon, it was time to come back again.
* For Roy’s books, visit www.royedmonds-blackpool.com.