If I've been quiet on the blogging front I can blame our upcoming holiday. There's been much to get through before we leave here on Saturday. Yes, at the invitation of our son, daughter-in-law and two teenaged granddaughters we're off to sunny Spain. Hurray! And including a very welcome ancilliary invitation to stay before and after our flights with our friends who live close by Glasgow airport, we will be away from home for ten days in all.

I've been thinking about this relatively modern phenomena we call a 'holiday'. This will be our first in many years, in fact since we used to drive the long road up and down from Hampshire once or twice annually. We rented holiday homes all around the Gairloch area but mainly at number seven, Red Point, now owned by a locally popular pop star called JK for some reason. (Helicopter, fast cars et al.) So in a sense, since we migrated north in 2002 this has been a bit of a seven year holiday all by itself.

My dictionary describes a holiday as a time in which a recreational break is taken from work, which leads straight into the age old question, 'what is 'work'?' If one enjoys what one does and therefore feels driven to do it, with or without monmetary reward, is it describable as 'work' from which one really needs or wants to take an occasional break? That question applies whether one is flying fast jets, creating / maintaining one's garden or painting landscapes. On the other hand I well remember the eager looking forward to family holidays in the days when one attended a fairly stressful office five days a week, receiving money at the end of the month for doing not a great deal other than marketing plastic cups. The only downside then to taking a holiday was the temporary loss of one's friends, the co-workers.

I haven't seen my grand-daughters since 2003. A long time during which two little girls have grown into teenagers, all too soon now will be young ladies. I cannot wait to see them and their very lovely mother. And our son isn't so bad, either! The sunshine and the fishing won't go amiss.

I don't expect the plane to be full of over-celebrated Glaswegians wearing mediterranean hats and teashirts and singing the chicken song. Not at a six a.m. takeoff time.

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