Sunday, October 18, 2020

Holiday II

We’ve just returned from holiday and, as usual, it already feels like we never left. There is laundry to be done, dishes to wash, and it seems that no one did the hoovering while we were gone.

Wait a minute! That’s the same thing I wrote last month. It’s like deja vu all over again.

But the truth is, we went on holiday. Again. This time up north, to Yorkshire, where we enjoyed the “atmospheric” (Read: clouds, rain and wind) scenery, which truly was stunning.

Scenic though it was, and even though we hiked and drove repeatedly thought the Moors (in various states of weather), I managed to take not a single photo of the breath-taking vistas. So, here’s one I nicked off the web. It’s better than anything I could do and, as a bonus, it’s not raining.

One of the highlights of the trip was a ride on the North Yorkshire Moors Heritage Railway. I’m not really a train buff, but it was certainly interesting and quite an experience.

Getting ready to board.

It's a steam train, what did you expect?

This is what it looked like when we went through a tunnel.
Must have given those Victoria couples quite the opportunity.

For you trainspotters, here's the engine.

The train brought us to the town of Whitby, a place famous for its Jet jewellery. It was a lovely town and we had a nose around, then dried out in a convivial café to wait for the train to leave and marvel at how the locals kept their famous Jet so well under cover.

We also went to Scarborough and, yes, the fair was in town. I think it’s always there.

Parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme...

Here's the beach. And this was one of the better days.

On the way back from one of our excursions, the SatNav decided to take us on an adventure, leading us onto narrower and narrower roads, up and down near-vertical inclines and over what they call a “Splash,” which is a road that runs under a creek instead of over it; a circumstance, one must suppose, reserved for those hamlets that lack the funds, ability or ambition necessary for building a bridge.

Makes you wonder how they get to the shops after a heavy rain.

Oddly, the most exciting thing we did on holiday was listen to the news. Every evening we sat, giving the flat-screen affixed to the wall our full attention, as region after region fell under the juggernaut of COVID. One by one, the surrounding counties fell, like used face-masks, by the wayside, but the county of North Yorkshire remained resolutely in Tier 1, as did our home county of Sussex.

It might not have been such an exciting sideshow, but the Government (bless them) managed to keep everyone on their toes through obfuscation, random rule-changing and offering us the opportunity to realize the sad, yet frightening, truth that they, themselves, had no idea what they were doing.

That particular week, they came up with a sort of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Need for the COVID era, with a Tier System ranging from One to Three, as opposed to the traffic light system they came up with a few weeks back that went from Green to Red. Same number of levels, same meanings, same confusion.

The new Tier System.

The idea that we might be locked down in North Yorkshire and unable to leave or, worse yet, locked out of Sussex and unable to return, or perhaps be required to drive a circuitous route home to avoid locked-down counties, gave a little extra spark to our otherwise peaceful holiday.

As it turned out, we were able to leave North Yorkshire while it was still in the Green (I mean, at Tier 1) and were not required to avoid driving through any counties on the route home (fortunately, we were nowhere near Wales) and we arrived to the Sussex we left, which, though still in Tier 1, is slowly, politely, climbing the ladder—as is the rest of the country—toward Tier 2, and beyond.

Good thing we had a holiday when we could. We won’t be going anywhere else for a long time.


  1. Michael
    Good to see you guys are enjoying yourselves. Stay safe from this Covid business. I'm safe here as we are being protected by our fearless president. (Pray for us).
    BTW, I don't worry much about karma so I copied the whole thing and told all my friends (both of them) that I just got back from your fine Country. Stay safe Mike

    Mike OHearn

    1. Good to hear from you. Glad to know you and yours are safe and being well looked after by tRump.