Switch off on a jolly holiday writes Andy Mitchell
Planning for holidays can be nerve-wracking, but none more so when you realise you’re one of those middle-aged worriers who seem to have acquired a sort of “Holiday OCD”.
When I was a kid, my Dad was in charge of making sure everything was sorted ahead of a tortuous journey to the most northern bit of Scotland. The Moray Firth can be lovely when it’s not featuring as one of the bits on the weather map that still read 12 Celsius when the rest of the UK basks in a heatwave.
In the old days, of course, the argument was whether someone had remembered to set the video for Corrie, or whether we should really be setting it at all and trusting it to get on with its job unattended.
My Mother’s received wisdom in those days was to turn ALL the electricity OFF before we locked up and fled Bispham for a week. I’ve never understood why she’d trust the fridge to get on with it whilst we were all out each day, and yet she couldn’t risk the video working normally until Saturday, without setting the place on fire.
Now I find myself having similar worries. I commented to the current Mrs Mitchell that I didn’t want to miss Upstairs Downstairs... a particular favourite at the moment on Sunday nights. “It’s not 1979 you know, came the terse reply... you can watch it on catch up!”
My mind started wandering to those awful days when holidaymakers used have to pack into ‘TV Rooms’ if they didn’t want to miss a favourite show. I’m reminded of Bernard Cribbins’ wonderfully pompous spoon salesman character in Fawlty Towers when he asked if he could “reserve the BBC 2 Channel this evening, for the duration of this televisual feast”, Fawlty replying in his usual style “No you may not!”
Thank goodness we’re not tied to the telly like we were all those years ago... and yes there’s the marvel of the BBC iPlayer.
Do people still turn the power off and cancel the papers? Remember even when papers were delivered?
Have a good holiday (or staycation if you can’t find a country that’ll have you, and you DID remember to lock the front door, didn’t you?
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