The Return of Estelle Maher -Friendblog Friday

Today, #FriendBlogFriday welcomes local author Estelle Maher, as she dreams of exotic holidays in the midst of lockdown. But on closer inspection, are holidays all they cracked up to be? Are we missing them just because can’t have one? It’s for you to decide, as we read from, ‘The Secret Diary of a Middle-aged Woman’

Holidays Versus Lockdown-

I write this in my garden on day seventy-seven of lockdown.  I have been out five times in that period.  Three occasions were to drop off presents and twice to the beach, (the only two occasions where I actually got out of the car).  Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m not moaning.  We are all in the same boat.  And even though I have had ‘the letter’ from the great NHS which tells me I still have another forty-eight days left regardless of what BoJo says, the hot weather today made me start pining for a proper summer holiday.

This was supposed to be the summer when we only went as three.  My eldest child has now decided it is uncool to hang around with her mum who is continuously spritzing her with Ambre Solaire, or her dad who has to give a full report on every cocktail he has had, or her younger brother who now competes with her on the tan-o-meter.  No, she wants to go to Ibiza and pay £200 to get into a club and then pay 20 Euro for a bottle of water. That constitutes as cool these days.

But what is it about holidays that make us crave them?  I did wonder today as I sit in my garden in the mini heatwave we are currently experiencing.  Are holidays all they are cracked up to be?  Here is a list of things to ponder.


It doesn’t matter where we go in the world; our flight always seems to be at some ungodly hour. Getting up in the middle of the night has its advantages.  I don’t have to put makeup on as it’s dark.  My kids will shower the night before, so there isn’t a fight for the hot water.  So, within thirty minutes of the alarm, we are heading down the M62 with my husband jumping from excitement to panic.  Panic is usually induced by thinking he has forgotten something, or with people who drive too slowly, or wondering if he has left the heating on. (Even though he turned it off four weeks ago to make sure he didn’t forget.)  Then as soon as we are at the airport and all checked in, we head to Duty-Free. Once the perfume, aftershave and various makeup items are all bought, we then head to the bar.  So what it’s four in the morning?  It doesn’t matter, I’m on holiday, and  I’ve been up since yesterday and feel like I’ve already put in a day’s work.  As I settle in the airport lounge, I can see my husband returning from the bar with two drinks and a very thin mouth.  He throws a few coppers on the table and tells me that’s the change out of twenty pounds and a firm request to ‘sip it’.


I’m not a fan of flying, so I usually munch my way through a strip of Valium as soon as I see the airport sign on the motorway. Once I’m on the plane, I start people watching and realise I am on the flight with the beautiful people.  They are all suitably dressed in matching travel wear ready for their long-haul flight clutching the latest edition of Beautiful People and Their Beautiful Families and periodically spritzing themselves.   I sit there wishing I had gotten up half an hour earlier to at least brush my hair and reconsider my leggings and cardy combo. Then I convince myself it doesn’t matter because I’m on holiday even though I am hiding behind my Take a Break and hoping that the particul