Holidays are fantastic aren’t they? There is simply nothing better than going on a holiday. You might say…except a good ride…and that’s fine…but a good ride on a holiday is infinitely better. There is no bad thing about going on a holiday. Except of course, coming home.
Don’t get me wrong, I love Waterford, I really do. I mean I’ve written enough columns about how great it is here, but by Christ when I crossed the border from Cork (Airport) to Waterford last week I was having many self-harming thoughts. The only thoughts that were more violent than the self-harming ones were the ones for other people. Almost the first person I saw when I came back from holiday was your man shaking the cup at me looking for coins. I had to be restrained from battering him with a suitcase full of vodka and Bacardi.
The thing I love so much about holidays is that, for just one or two weeks (‘two weeks is too long’, people keep telling me – those people are idiots), you get to live like a millionaire. You get up in the morning and you have a nice brekkie, you have lunch by the pool, possibly with a few cocktails, and then you have a little siesta in the afternoon. You wake about five; have a nice shower (power shower that actually works, unlike the limescale ridden piss drip that I have in Ferrybank) and then get ready to go out for dinner.
Could you imagine walking through Waterford City with the staff of the restaurants and pubs out on the streets trying to entice you in? “Revolution tonight folks?” “Hello lovely ladies, Espresso for dinner tonight?” “Hello family…kids eat free…yes? Yes?”
This is what you have to put up with in Spain each night but you simply don’t care, because you’re on holiday and you’re a bloody millionaire. All the menus are practically the same, whether you’re in a Chinese, Mexican or some English or Irish pub. It’s all just a variation of half a roast chicken and chips. Every night we eat this stuff and then we pack a dessert on top of it – usually some kind of ice cream with a sparkler on top or a mini version of a romantica.
When we go shopping it’s for tea-towels, magnets, fake soccer jersies or booze that’s a couple of quid cheaper than home. “Money is no issue love, buy as many of those playing cards with the naked ladies on them as you’d like.” We don’t need to buy groceries because we are eating out, every bloody night of the week.
And then we meet someone from Waterford, someone who we wouldn’t utter two words to at home. But this is a holiday, and you just met a fellow millionaire so you’ll drink with them all night, even though you don’t actually know their names and aree too embarrassed to ask them because you really should know it already. You’ll see them occasionally for the rest of the holiday and then they’ll be on the bus to the airport, and then they’ll be waiting at the carousel for their bags, and then you’ll never want to see them again.
The one thing about Irish on holidays is that we absolutely feel inferior to just about everyone. We feel inferior to the locals because we can’t understand a word they’re saying and feel a bit thick. We feel inferior to the workers over there because, until the 2nd or 3rd night we don’t really have a clue where we’re going (I saw a Kildare woman get a taxi to a restaurant that was 20 seconds away from her). We feel inferior when we walk into a restaurant and the waiters immediately hand us the English menu. Just once it would be nice to be confused for a Spanish person. Unfortunately, that’s never going to happen pale face. Most of all though, we feel inferior to just about everyone around the swimming pool. We are whiter, and frankly just a little bit uglier than everybody else. If you’re like me you somehow managed to apply the sun cream like a cow’s spots and now you’re this horrible blotchy red and white thing. Spanish people look at our bodies as if some sort of plague has just infected us. Freckles…freckles everywhere! But who cares, because we’re millionaires for a week.
From the moment that we arrive at the hotel and walk straight out onto the balcony (then take a picture of it and send it to as many people as possible), life is just amazing. It’s just a pity that it all has to come to an end so quickly. The life of a Canarian Prince is one that I could get used to, so much so that I’m probably going to start doing the lotto now. You can all fight amongst yourselves over the traffic on the quay and who’s going to be the next Mayor…I’m off for another two beers for the price of one and maybe a few tunes on the Karaoke. “Half a Roast Chicken and Chips? Don’t mind if I do love…”