It’s A Big World Out There!

To say I have had a lucky childhood would be a lie.

But, I have been to countries all over the world and I am going to list them;

China (Macao)
Hong Kong
Malta (currently home)

Some places I have lived in and some I have been on holiday to. Yugoslavia was an accident, blame my mother and her map reading. Complete with rather large caravan in tow, she managed to steer my father down a road which lead to a border crossing, yeah those funny things that stop people crossing illegally. Thankfully, the guards saw the funny side and allowed us to turn the whole lot around and go back the way we came.

Why talk about the places I have been, because someone who was once part of my family called me conceited about the places I had been, told me it made me sound big headed. So my question is, should I be ashamed of all the places I have been because others aren’t as fortunate or should I share my experiences with others who are unable to see the world due to restrictions, whatever they may be?

I have friends who don’t have passports, have never set foot outside if the UK, a dear friend of mine, until she was 34 had never been out of the county she was born in. Once we got her passport sorted, off she went and came back buzzing about the people, the place, the museums, the cafés, the culture, and her visit to Paris was deemed a success. Her next adventure was Benidorm, not exactly a place of culture and cafés, more Brits abroad and booze. Considering she was with a bunch of others who out for a Hen Weekend, it was an appropriate place to go. I suppose the outcome of this is that once she started to travel she didn’t stop.

Should The Past Stay Where It Is?

I ask this to find out your view ?

If you knew a family secret, would you allow it to be shared years later, when there is nothing that can be done to change the outcome.?

In your current relationship, would you mention something from your past, that could jeopardise your relationship, just to get if off your chest, not having any secrets?

Do you keep things close to your heart, so that it doesn’t get broken, over and over again?

We miss people from our past, grandparents, parents and sometimes friends, although not from death, they disappear out of your life …. The past defines us, the past is where we came from but it’s not where we are going …. Do we tend to pick out the best bits, leaving the nasty memories as possible, never happened, events, buried deep in the recess of time.

I don’t remember a lot of my past, moved around a lot, made friends and walked away, with the packing of every box, every new house that was moved into had different memories. Some good, some horrible and some down right nasty that no child should endure. But some so funny that recalling them today, would have you smiling and wondering how the hell!!

Boarding school, now there is a past that I want to forget and it would appear that I have forgotten a lot of it, not sure if it’s by choice or old age creeping in. Names pop up and I am sat scratching my head as to who were they! Probably they are doing the same.

Would I go back and change anything, more than likely not, possibly not have said something’s to certain people – they didn’t deserve my wrath, my anger – and to those people I apologise.

I don’t regret my past, without it I wouldn’t be who I am today or where I am, it doesn’t stop me wondering “what if”, but that’s something I have no control over, my future I do!

Depression …. I Live With It, I Don’t Suffer From It.

For many years I was prescribed Prozac! yep that lovely little green and yellow pill of happiness all squished into a capsule, taken on a daily basis! all to keep your spirits up.

20 years and about ten stone heavier, apparently a side effect is the inability to digest carbs, and we all know that every lovely tasting food is full of carbs, I took the decision to stop, cold turkey, overnight just stopped taking those little tablets of sunshine. To be brutally honest I had told everyone that I was doing it, so it was no shock to my friends who noticed that I disappeared from life for a while, I went into hibernation mode, or in other words, I stuck two fingers up to the world and did what I wanted and hang the consequences … Obviously popping my head out every now and again to check that everyone else was ok.

We moved to Egypt, which you have read about, what an eye opener that was. I would like to add that I left a good friend behind and warned her that the place would break her spirit, as much as I hate to do the “told you so” dance, another pair of rose tinted glasses were taken off and firmly stood on, broken into tiny pieces and thrown away. On the plus side, she and her other half are going traveling and won’t be returning in the near future, good luck babes, you deserve it xx.

Our travels took us to somewhere neither one of us had ever been to …… Never even contemplated in our list of places to go on holiday … We had heard of the place, it was in Europe, but a tiny little island 314 square kilometres, smaller than most towns in the UK. And now we call it home. We have a beach within 5 minutes walk, it’s free and only locals know about the beach, tourists can only gaze from their boat trips as their boats come 1/2 kilometer from the beach, bliss.

Our apartment is huge, 3 bedrooms, two balconies, two bathrooms, fitted kitchen and fully furnished and the best bit ….. The view. I open my balcony doors in the morning and I have the Mediterranean Sea right there, in front of me, I stand in the back balcony and have views towards churches, rooftops, the main city with all the history and gorgeous architecture, right there ….

The weekend we moved in there was a firework competition, I stood on the front balcony and cried, stupidity enough I am crying now, the feeling of happiness, bubbles of years of stress just melting away, I actually felt like I was home. Not back considering we had been in a hotel room for two weeks and then moved to the other side of the island to a small village with no English people, no moaning expats, no second home owners whinging about why they can’t afford to make the move permanent – the atmosphere in the village is stunning.

We have been here for 8 months, to be fair it’s been the best 8 months I have had for a long time, other than a slight hiccup with a family member who I no longer speak to, my life is pretty much sorted. I know I have been lucky, I know that some people think that I am conceited, big headed, loud, hell I am all of those things, if that is the way that you see me, that’s your problem not mine.

Depression is an illness, stepping out of your comfort zone and doing something that scares the shit out of you, might just be what you need to reset your levels …. A bit like doing control, alt, delete on your computer and reboot! It worked for me, but then we all deal with depression in different ways, I don’t let it control my life, I accept that it is part of my life. I don’t fight with my inner demons, we battle on a daily basis …. Some days it wins …. Other days I win.

As long as I stay relaxed, the battles are getting fewer and fewer, on the plus side, I have that awesome view …. For as long as my landlord decides that he doesn’t want us to move …….

Relaxed, Happy and Still Laughing

My husband is my life, my best friend and the person that I tend to spend 24 hours a day with, 7 days a week. I have girl friends but they have their own lives and I had to cut the apron strings, me, I did it, it was hard and believe me when I say it hurt like hell. Through it all I have my husband.

We have a brilliant relationship, we are best friends, call each other mate and accept that there are times when we need our own space. Luckily our apartment is huge, so we can actually get away from each other, although it doesn’t happen very often, the needing to be apart. Which is really lucky as although we have been here for a couple of months, experience has taught me to avoid people like the plague and that is exactly what we have done.

Don’t get me wrong, we speak to people but we have no new “couple” friends, we don’t do the whole double dating crap, honestly I don’t think people would get our sense of humour. We take the Mickey out of people all the time, laugh at the most inopportune moment and have that connection where we don’t need to speak, just the eye movement, a smile and then the giggles start. Not a word spoken, just that “look”.

We discuss fashion, or lack of it, in both males and females. Women who wear clothes, just not quite big enough to cover ample skin and boys, said loosely, who have their trousers hanging around their arses. Not a good look, but funny enough my hubby does agree with me on this. I think parents need to teach their children how to dress before they go out the door, or at least tell them the origins of how they are wearing their clothes. Tah Dah ! A world full of boys who pull their trousers up. Simple really.

We discuss politics, football, which becomes a very contentious subject, and since moving here, religion. A few weeks ago we sat outside our local in the village, watching minibus after minibus turn up and unload women and children who walked into the church. My husband, without skipping a beat, stated that they were gathering for my exorcism, cheers mate. After an hour or so and we are still sat watching people walking out, he turns to me and says “obviously didn’t have a full house, must have been missing a couple of people to make it work, you are still here”.

Spitting out my beer, laughing, I watch a nun walk over towards me and on that note, I get up and walk towards the bathroom located at the back of the pub. I was Nun Blocked, she put her hand on my shoulder and smiled, as if to say, you got away this time love, but we will get you. Glancing over at hubby, he mouths “check your skin for burn marks” – git!

We tend to keep ourselves to ourselves, we meet those people who have nothing better to do but sail around the world and don’t need to work, other than pulling ropes and making a sail boat go in the right direction. When they ask us why we are here, we just reply, the weather and leave it at that. People don’t need to know how we live, that’s our business and so it shall stay.

My husband makes a point of making me laugh, everyday, whether I am under a dark cloud or not, a silly dance, a random comment, not being able to get a sentence out properly, for that reason along with many others that we work. He is the ying to my yang, I am fiery and he is calm, unless he is watching his football team, to cap it all and don’t laugh but we have started going out walking and end up wearing nearly matching outfits, grey tee shirt and blue shorts, both of us giggling that the next step would be matching shell suits, so if that does happen someone please shoot us, or at least put us infront of a mirror.

Friends Are The Family That You Choose

The last couple of weeks have been stressful for me. I thought I was there for someone and it turns out that all they wanted to do was insult me and deflect their insecurities in my direction, blaming me for their mistakes.

Not to delve too deeply, I am no longer speaking to this person, having removed them from my life and moving on, with the help of my friends. They have listened when I wanted someone to tell me that I wasn’t all these disgusting names, that this person was calling me. I needed reassurance as to who I really was.

Do we choose our friends on our own or are we predisposed to veer towards like minded people? People who have been through similar experiences, same personality traits, matching likes and dislikes?

This last year has shown me a thing or two, the people that I was always there for, or thought I was, don’t appear to appreciate how much I value a friendship. Initially I was hurt, as previously written in a different post. But time is a great healer, picking myself up and licking my wounds has made me not rely on friendship quite so much.

I could honestly say that the experience has made me learn a lot about myself, some people go their whole lives not having the brilliant friends that I can call on.


To the rest of you, who drained me of my energy, but never seemed to be there when I needed a shoulder to cry on, I will not delete you from my life but don’t expect me to be at your beck and call next time the world revolves around you.

I appreciate that lives overlap and different time zones make things difficult in trying to communicate, but hey, there is always email. A girlfriend and I communicate like it as she refuses to have a Facebook account and the honest I don’t blame her. I might even go back to writing letters, the old fashioned way. Less hassle and drama free.

Don’t Let Anyone Burst Your Bubble

We all have them, they are part of us …….. Families! But when do you decide that helping someone who is a family member, becomes a battle of wills and you find yourself getting angrier and angrier at the complete stupidity of your family member.

A girlfriend of mine has a very distant relationship with a member of her family, in recent years the rift was getting smaller, but events in the last couple of months has made her realise that she doesn’t actually like him that much.

They had different relationships with their parents. She went to boarding school and he stayed at home with the parents, he went on the family holidays, she just came home three times a year. He was there all the time and she wasn’t, the age difference between them didn’t help either.

She recently felt sorry for him, his marriage of 3 years had broken down and he was in need of a big sister hug, or so she thought.

She went off to the airport to collect him, his flight was nearly an hour late, so that didn’t go down well and when he finally turned up, she was on the verge of a migraine due to the lights inside the airport.

They had the cordial hug and got into a taxi for the 10 minute drive back to her flat. On entering the flat, he put his stuff into the bedroom at the end of the corridor and out they went down to the pub. Probably not the best thing to do, but still they went.

He had come to get his head sorted out, to have a heart to heart and chat about where he was going to go. She had already spoken to her soon to be ex sister in law and she knew that there was no going back for him, the love and trust had gone.

The longer he was there the more she realized that she didn’t like him. He was full of bullshit stories, his black cat was bigger than yours, he had been there and done it, badly obviously, and he didn’t have the decency to tell the person on the end of the phone that he was having a break with his sister and he would phone back. He wanted his ego stroked, and she was not the person to do it!

On nights when she didn’t want to go to the pub, he would go on his own and bring alcohol back to the house. Not a day went by, where he didn’t have a drink.

Breaking point came when a conversation turned to him not submitting self assessment tax forms, he had failed to do this for 5 years, each year culminating in a penalty of £1600.00 per year. His attitude was one of, I don’t have to do anything I don’t want to. She flipped, picking up her pint of beer, she threw it over him and walked home, leaving him sat there with her husband.

She refused to talk to him the next day and screamed at him that he was not a child, he has responsibilities and he needs to grow up. He grabbed his stuff and walked out of the flat, she never saw him again after that.

Then all the insults started to come out, she was to blame for the way he had turned out, she was the reason he was untrusting, a failure, blah, blah, blah. She replied that she was not to going to be responsible for his failures as a human being and that as far as she was concerned, he was dead to her.

She left it a few days and when he started “poking” her, she wrote a message to him saying did he want to talk. He replied that he always wanted to talk and then it started AGAIN! The insults came thick and fast. She was doing an excellent impersonation of her deceased mother, her life was pretentious and she should stop telling people where she had lived before as it made her sound conceited. She was selfish and her attitude towards others made her think she was better than everyone else.

She stupidly began to retaliate, telling him some home truths, all the while making her self madder and madder for letting him get to her. You see, she gets on very well with her soon to be ex, sister in law, knowing both sides of the story. And one of the main reasons that her sister in law had asked him to leave was his lack of respect, communication and his lashing out with words.

A quick conversation with a few good friends who knew her, very well, made her come to her senses and accept that he wasn’t only lambasting her, he was deflecting. All the nasty comments aimed at her, were actually him finally, but without accepting, that he was describing himself.

The damage had been done, she was prepared to accept an apology for his outburst, initially. After all he had put a small hole in her bubble and as time is a great healer, the hole had healed itself, unlike her feelings, or lack of them, for him. There was no going back as far as she was concerned.

I know she has shut herself off from people, rebuilding the walls and making sure that her bubble has a double lining and re evaluating who she allows to get close.

It’s a sad fact of life that people tend to be jealous of others, but rather than just admit it, they will write bitchy comments on a forum, send snide comments on Facebook or, if they have your number, text insults.


What Doesn’t Kill You…….. Better Be Running

How many of us have friends on that social networking site that we have never met? Personally, I think about 10. I will admit that I am one of those people who doesn’t need to have thousands of friends. I heard on a American program the other day the following ….. 1356 friends, wow I am popular, oh how sad you only have 38, not so popular. Is that what we have become, a world of competition to see who can get the most friends? Well, if that is the case, the. Count me out. What I can say is that the people who I haven’t yet met are friends of friends, and I either have their phone numbers or a Skype connection – so not virtual friends, just people I have a connection with but haven’t hooked up with, but that time will come.

A close friend of mine is organising a school reunion, for ages he has been asking me to go. With a skip in my step and a big fat no thank you, I would rather stick pins in my eyes than set foot in a place that I went to for 4 years and couldn’t wait to see the back of, I replied that due to the distance and the cost, I wouldn’t be able to go. Turns out I am not the only one.

A few of us were discussing going, but the upshot was that only one of us could afford to bail all of us out of jail, as there would be people going who we really disliked at school, and we didn’t think that 30+ years of not seeing them would change the situation. One of my girl friends retorted that she would never set foot in the town where the school is, let alone the school, as she has issues with her mother. Actually that is a bit of a white lie, we all have issues with her mother, even her brother. The family reunion would have been with open arms, just to show that no weapons were being carried. However this would lead to concealed weapons and plenty of bloodshed, so we decided that it was not listed as an option.

There are people who are traveling from the far reaches of the earth to be there! Not sure why, as in my case I have gained a lot of weight, I haven’t done anything to put me in with a chance of winning the Nobel Peace Prize and my life is one of walking about enjoying the sights and charms of a country with so much history, that I get lost in the heritage of it all and I don’t work, by choice. I am what they call retired, very young and very lucky and I have no interest in sharing that with people who I haven’t been in contact with for, well since I left school.

Which brings me back to the need to be popular. Chatting to my girl friend, who is currently in hospital, having knackered her back, get well soon Curly, who recently decided to have a major clear out of those people, who she described as “hangers on”, you know the ones, only want to have you as a friend to track your every move. Turns out that one of the girls, who she recently removed, I couldn’t stand at school, my other girl friend who has mother issues, also hates this person, so it appears that it’s not us, it must be her. Before she dropped her, we had a quick look on her page and yep she hasn’t changed a bit from school, still has that smug look and the whole, ” I am so gorgeous” aura, oozing out of her. Which just made us all realise why we don’t like her, because she is who she is, it’s one of those, can’t put my finger on it situations, she is marmite, either like it or hate it. For us, we dislike, yet she is one of those people who is first in line to go to the reunion, just so she can look down her nose at those of us, who haven’t stayed the same since leaving school.

I joined the site for the reunion and after having requests from old male school friends, decided that it was a bad idea, so I promptly left and ignored any requests. Why would you want to know what I am doing, oh yeah! You are interested in what I am doing with my life, as you haven’t actually left the town where you were born, raised, went to school, got a job, now live and are married raising your own children and all of this, quite possibly without a passport!! Your life is that boring. A female who was in the same year as me, now owns the shop where she worked as a Saturday girl……. What is that all about? for the love of all things sacred, move away, see the world. Seems recently she moved 50 miles away, wow. When I move, it’s normally to a different continent, thousands of miles, with as much planned as can be!

I like my friends, no that is a lie, I would lay down my life for my friends, because I know they would do the same for me, or at least I hope they would. My friends consist of Managers, Company Owners, Housewives, Teaching Assistants, Nurses, some I have no idea what they do, it doesn’t bother me. I don’t do one up man ship (think that should be one word, but iPad knows better) I treat people like I like to be treated, usually with a warped sense of humour and a wicked wit, normally mistaken for sarcasm, which tends to see people drop by the wayside who can’t keep up.

Friends live all over the world, from Scotland, Spain, Egypt, Australia and America oops and England, ha ha , have a lot of friends in England, after all it’s where I came from ….. Initially! But it’s a big wide world out there and some people, mainly those who don’t have passports, need to go and apply for one and use the bloody thing and get out of their small mindedness and away from the village boundaries and experience life and living, instead of adding people from school who have far more interesting lives than you !!!

No More Tears

To say that the last year has been fraught with tears and sadness, would be a slight understatement. I missed my friends more than they missed me, or so it would seem, they just accepted that I was doing what I wanted to and their lives carried on, albeit without me in it! I
know, it was our decision to go and live abroad, some where sunny, cheap and a flight away. But what I failed to take into consideration was the country that we moved to was deep in a revolutionary turmoil, having voted for the first time in 30+ years, the political speeches before the election had the country divided 50/50. They cast their votes and the winner got into power, literally, he fired people left, right and centre who did not support him, people in high powered positions were gone overnight. In one weekend he sacked 187 senior police officials, putting his own people in place. This was not what the people expected and the backlash was starting to show, high unemployment as the tourist, who visited in their millions, were taking heed of the news and staying away, beggars and thieves roamed the streets, looking for money to feed their families. Slowly the country was imploding, they starting fighting amongst themselves, people were being shot for not paying their rent, bricks being thrown, tyres being set alight – not good for those, like us, who had decided to make this place home.

The biggest question people asked us “what you going to do when you get bored”, us bored, never, or so we thought. How quickly that changed, within 6 months I had grown to hate the place. I wanted out, even offered to pack my bags and go back to England and go back to work, putting it all down to a bad experience.

We had signed the lease on the apartment for a year, looking back that was a stupid move. A message to anyone who wants to rent abroad, DO NOT RENT IN A COMPLEX OF SECOND HOME OWNERS! Never have I come across such a vindictive bunch of people, who have nothing better to do than write about you in their forum! Still, they sort of did us a favour.

I started looking at other countries to go and live in, a list of 20 was compiled. The funny thing is that the place we ended up in, wasn’t even on the list, how ironic is that?

Flights were booked, hotel booked and a couple of agents were contacted.

The day of departure arrived and we knew that we were over the weight limit, expecting a hefty bill, we checked in armed with debit card. Lady Luck was smiling down on us, the bill was 3300 Le, in real money about £330.00 so a lot less than when we arrived. All we had was 2200 Le in cash, so hubby traipses off to the cash point machine over in the International Departures part of the airport. No joy, all the data terminals are down, so out with the debit and credit cards to pay the bill and nothing, we ended up handing over all the cash that we had to pay for the luggage, all checked in to Malta, bargain!

Hurghada to Cairo, very uneventful, we played Angry Birds all the way there. Check in at Cairo for onward flight to Istanbul, no problems, although I was slightly concerned about a woman who was able to check in without actually showing her face as she was wearing a burqa, still nothing to do with me, I am not in charge of airport security, or lack of it. Turns out that she was on the same flight as us, from Cairo to Istanbul, and when we landed the burqa had gone and she was showing her face off to the big wide world, confused, yep so was I!

More hanging around in Istanbul, apparently waiting for authorisation for our luggage to go through, as we had the wrong piece of paper, or were missing some page. Sorry, sweetie, nothing to do with me, I just handed it over, paid for it and was given this……. 2 1/2 hours of waiting, we are finally allowed to proceed to the Departure Lounge. By this time, I am fed up, in need of a coffee and wanting to go shopping in Duty Free. I am tired and disappointed to find that my favourite perfume is not available, for the love of Cerrutti, why not?? Only the obligatory bottle of vodka was purchased as unable to find Bacardi for hubby as well.

Flight called and we walk along the concourse towards the section for our flight. Result the flight is not only on time but half empty, so hubby and I get to have a set of three seats between us. We both manage to grab an hours sleep, as the flight is only an hour and 50 minutes long.

Bags retrieved, panic over as had visions of bags being left on the Tarmac somewhere and standing there is the taxi that I have arranged, love it when a plan comes together.

We check into the hotel, the room on the first night was a bit small but the next morning we up upgraded, yep twice, to a room with this view ……


Wow! Better make the most of this as we only have the room for two weeks.

We find the local bar by wandering around the back streets, meet some expats, and after a couple of nights with them decided that they are not the kind of people that we want to be around. Nothing wrong with them, only they work, we don’t, they were complaining and we have only just arrived and I don’t want anything to spoil our new adventure.

We moved into our own apartment last week, with sea views, among the locals, no where near to the tourist attractions, other than the open top bus goes passed with all the holiday makers on it, but it doesn’t stop in our village.


This is the view of our beach from Valetta, it’s 5 minutes walk from our new home. We feel at home here, we never did in Egypt. Hopefully we will be here for a while, the landlord says we can stay as long as we want to! Might just hold him to that !!

Why I Didn’t Ever Do It …….

Most girls have a loving and nurturing relationship with their mothers, they sit and learn how to read, cook, tie shoes laces, get dressed, brush hair, clean teeth, lick the bowl empty when cakes are being made and want to be like their mums.

I never did, I told my mother at the age of 7, after receiving a Silver Cross twin pram and twin dolls, that I never wanted children as I never wanted to be tied down and unhappy. Not long after that my parents announced that they were going to give me a little baby brother or sister. My response to that was one of abject horror and told them to take it back, why would you want to do that, I am quite happy being an only child, having all the attention on me and twisting you both round my little finger – daddy’s girl and all that!

>And so our family unit became 4 instead of three. I remember my dad taking me to the hospital to see the newborn infant and on peering down on him, declared that he was ugly and that we should leave him there, someone else could have him. Apparently that is not the normal reply for a child of 7 1/2 years old – still mum didn’t take my suggestion and brought him home.

We had to move house as being military once a child reaches the age of 7 he or she has to have their own room, well they were the rules back then, not sure if they apply now, but most military families don’t set out to break the world breeding record – so we moved round the corner to a 3 bedroom house with a small back garden and a play area. Didn’t have to change schools or anything so all my mates stayed the same.

One fine and sunny day when the offspring was about 6 months old, my mother declared that I should take him out for a walk. Hang on he is your child not mine, why should I get to take him out? Seemingly a big sisters role is to look after her brother, don’t remember reading that bit in the manual, infact don’t remember getting a handbook at all….. so off I went pushing said child in pram, knowing that I had to be back for tea in a couple of hours as was the norm in the house.

I came home for dinner and my mother asked me, as I am sat at the table ready to dig into food, where was my baby brother, outside I tell her, up she gets goes outside, comes back and yells “Where is your brother” “Outside” “Where outside” “In a field” “Why would you do that?” “You told me to take him out, you never said anything about bringing him back” “Go and get him” ” But my dinner” “You can eat it cold” so I had to go back and bring him home and from then on my mother knew that this was going to be a struggle for her.

She told my father what I had done and I got sent to my room – again! There are several more incidents like that, I pushed him down the stairs, I pushed him into a wall on his little Tykes ridealong thing – I was not a nice big sister.

To be honest the fact that I didn’t speak to him until he was about 21 years old shows my determination not to like him. I do remember sticking up for him though, someone was picking on my brother, that is my job – so I put the bully in his place. Seems that the bully was actually me!

I don’t do babies, cant abide them and I don’t understand those people who yearn to have something in their lives which is going to give them nothing but heartache and a financial headache – go and buy a puppy. So what if you have to take it out in the rain, you never going to play with your child in the rain? Friends of mine have children, and to be frank I tolerate them, one girlfriend of mine a few years ago, actually took me and hubby out for dinner to break the news that they were pregnant and would we stay their friends – needless to say we are still friends and their life didn’t change that much, instead of weekends down the pub we went to theirs and had a bbq, instead of going out we went to theirs and stayed in and got drunk infact instead of having a life outside of the house, we went to them when they couldn’t get a babysitter, mainly cos we felt sorry for them that this little thing had ruined a great social life, going out, partying – I know I can see you shaking your head and thinking its called growing up but that is not something that I have ever wanted to do.

I will openly admit that I am selfish, a trait I get from my mother. Although how many daughters buy their mother a house, for the mother to turn around once the whole sale has gone through and decides that she doesn’t actually want it anymore. What the hell am I supposed to do with a house? Apart from the fact that I never want to live where we have bought it and only bought it there as she wanted to be close to her sisters. I have to explain this to my hubby who quite rightly turns round and says that he didn’t expect anything else from her – she is your mother after all ! Cheers mate, a bit of support would have been nice but in true hubby form, he just sits back and watches from his high horse and laughs at the complete cock up that my family are, sorry, were.

My mother once phoned me and told me that I needed to be with her as soon as possible, which is quite a feat in itself as I lived about 7 hours drive from her. So we packed the car and went all the way to the North to a remote little farm to find mother playing farmhouse wife, with some cattle & sheep, only for her to point out this pathetic looking border collie in a shed and when I say shed, I mean smaller than a box with an old spring base board as the door. The reason mother wanted me there was the dog, which she had named Fly, was terrified of sheep, having been head butted by one as a puppy and as a farmer, the dog was of no use and was going to be shot!

Yep we ended up with the dog, turns out she was a dear little soul and wanted nothing more than to be taken out for long walks, played with, fed and generally loved…… So we did! She became part of the family for 11 years, until we were forced to put her to sleep by the vet. My mother, she buggered off to Spain to go and live, to go and rescue more helpless people and animals.

I suppose my dislike of children has always been that they could potentially hold you back, unless of course you were my mother and then you were just a burden, and like a pair of worn out socks, could be thrown away and replaced with something new and more fun.

I vowed never to be like my mother, but the older I get the more like her I become, although my hubby disagrees and tells me that I could never be that selfish, which is a good thing in a way, but I will always help an animal, children not so much, but animals, would rather have a cat or a dog anyway ……

Are We All Horrid Tourists?

It’s that time of the year, we’ve saved up all our spare cash, now it’s time to book that two week break. Time to chill, time to relax, time to piss off the locals – and other holiday makers, by the power of grey skull you will make the most of that holiday, no matter who you upset, offend or fall in love with!

Brits are known the world over for being loud, obnoxious, drunk, lewd and generally capable of making a nuisance of themselves, especially on an all inclusive as they feel they need to drink what they paid for their holiday in watered down local beer, spirits and cocktails.

Germans have the bad press of putting towels on sun loungers, creeping down in the middle of the night to get the best beds, only to find that the Brit coming home at daft o’clock has thrown them in the pool, for a laugh.

Italians are loud, very loud. They feel the need to shout even when the person they are talking to is sat right next to them and tend to be overly expressive with arms and hand gestures.

The Orientals appear to want to take photos of everything, whether it is of historical interest, as if it the last time they will see the outside of their own country.

I recently did one of those where in the world, have you been to things. I was surprised to learn that I have been to 122 cities in 22 countries, which may have increased as have moved continents again! But I would like to add that I don’t see myself as well travelled, just very lucky to have the opportunity to see the world, or at least a bit of it.

Back to that all important holiday, herded like cattle at the airport, 3 hours before your flight is due – have to keep those people in Duty Free in jobs. Jostled to the plane, unless of course you have Speedy Boarding, then you get to go to the bun fight first for the best seats on certain airlines. Cramped and uncomfortable seats, although saying that, the flight from Cairo to Istanbul on Turkish Airlines, was quite possible one of the best flights, comfy chairs, free tv and ear phones, free meal and soft drinks – all included in the price. Ok so I will admit, the food wasn’t up to much but thenit was free, so who am I to complain.

Flight lands and the doors open to new surroundings, depending on where you land the drastic change in temperature, and the journey to collect your luggage. Filling out of visa forms, hang on, did I I just do one of these on the plane? Sure I did, but this one is slightly different, or is it?

Customs done and onto the magic roundabout to collect your luggage, fingers crossed that it actually made it to your destination and that no one else has the same bag as you. Whay hay, mission accomplished, bags in hand you walk out into the sea of holiday reps, all waving placards and boards with different names, hotels, holiday companies. Like traffic wardens, they direct you to the bus that will take you to your final destination, that all important hotel that you are going to call home for the next two weeks, or however long you have booked it for.

If you are like me, I refuse to pay the extortionate prices that are charged for the transfers and make my own arrangements to be collected at the airport, a lot quicker and usual I am at the bar before the bus even turns up with the rest of the people from my plane, although 9 times out of 10, the hotel I book isn’t occupied by anyone else from our flight.

What I have never understood, is people who book the same hotel in the same location year after year. It would appear that there are folks out there who like to have their hotel like their favourite pair of slippers – comfy, reliable and won’t give them any irritation. What is the fun in that? One hotel we stayed in actually planted a tree for a couple who had been back to the hotel 8 times in the space of three years, that is dedication, or lack of imagination. The hotel wasn’t that good, we only went back twice, mainly due to its location. But as this couple never went outside the front door to see the sights and sounds, they could have gone anywhere…… Still nowt as strange as folks, my old gran used to say and she was always right.

You are all booked in and then they show you to your room. This is where I have issues, I don’t want twin beds, I booked a double room, I booked a room with a view so putting me in a room with two beds pushed together and the view of the air con units on the roof, is not my idea of a pleasant stay. Usually I descend on the reception, like a bullet out of a gun, but over the years I have found that being polite and somewhat sarcastic, as not many understand the military sense of humour, does the trick and with a few words with the manager, I am promised a better room in the morning.

Other than the stay in the hotel we are currently in, the change is fine and will suffice. At the time of writing this, we are spending our last night in an apartment with a small living area and kitchen facilities, sea views, actually stunning views, which is a double upgrade on the first room we were put in. A small dingey room, with no view and I didn’t fit in the bath just wasn’t going to cut it for the two weeks that we were staying here.

Back to the holiday makers or as I like to call them, noisy, inconsiderate gits, who have kept me awake with their loud chatting, singing, drinking, or alternatively woken me up at stupid o’clock in the morning, singing, shouting and being a general pain in the arse.

I know we are all on holiday, but have some thought for others who are in the building, around the pool, in the dining room and other places where sharing is mandatory.

I can party with the best of them, but normally worry about other people who may be asleep, as I am crawling home in the small hours, full of the local booze and feeling slightly worse for wear, after all they are going to be the ones walking passed your door when you are trying to get your head down!

We move into our own apartment tomorrow, so we will no longer be on holiday. We are living away from the tourist area, a close walk to a small beach. The open top bus drives passed on the main road but as we are away from that it will be like we are amongst the locals, and in a way we will be.

Let the tutting begin for those louts on holiday who make the locals wish that they didn’t have historic buildings, beautiful architecture and stunning scenery. We are visitors to their country, lets respect them and the other holiday makers who are also there to enjoy their two weeks off work.