I read an article on line this week which really made me cross!
It seems that the Green Party leader Natalie Bennett took a train instead of flying and it has outraged people! Well frankly their comments have in turn outraged me and the link to families not being able to have a holiday if budget airlines are taxed or flights are made more expensive is frankly ridiculous!
Lets start with the whole taking a train idea – why the hell shouldn’t she? I’m led to believe she paid for the trip herself – so why shouldn’t she choose her own mode of transport? As she says, it gave her time to work on the way there (and back) and she held on to her principles of saving the environment by not flying. Well good for her – at least there is one political person who even has principles to stick to!
I can quite imagine that is was an adventure, I’m sure not all the trains were desperately comfortable and the food may have been less that brilliant – lets face it train food isn’t often note worthy in a good way! But to have seen so much of the continent and experienced such a journey must have been a lot of fun – and I would certainly consider it if I was doing the same trip!
But it in turn moves on to the never ending debate about cheap flights, holiday entitlement and traveling with children. John Spellar MP accused her of being elitist and out of touch. He accuses her of fulfilling her fantasies by taxing cheap flights and putting holidays out of the touch of normal people! Well this privately educated man on his MP’s salary has no idea of normal anyway so why do we care what he thinks! And as for “Imagine trying to take kids on holiday on a train journey that took up days and days” I hate to tell you old chap, but travelling with children doesn’t have to be the burden you consider it to be!
Why does every child in this country have to be instant gratification? Why can’t they take the long road and wait for something that will be worthwhile in the end? Can we not teach them that the journey is part of the adventure? That to take your time and watch the world go by is as good if not better than the instant hit that is over before it begins?
What life lessons are we teaching them by always giving in to the “easiest” or fastest option? If we can teach them that the longer road is worth it in the end – for the thrill of adventure not to mention saving the planet for them to enjoy when they’re older and have children themselves, then we make a better future for us all.
When I was a child we regularly travelled across Europe in a camper van, sometimes for days at a time – and it was an amazing way to have a holiday! We saw far more of the world than you would from the widow of a plane and experienced life from many different angles and perspectives.
When my children were smaller we would travel to the north of Scotland in the car – a journey of at least 12 hours. Now we could have flown in far less time and maybe done it cheaper ,maybe not. But we chose to make our own way there. It wasn’t tedious, or dull or stressful – we watched the world go by, sang, talked, read and enjoyed the view – maybe you should try it!
We don’t need to have thousands of cheap flights available to enjoy a holiday! Why do we need to fly away elsewhere, line the pockets of a hotel in another country, and teach our children that it’s only a holiday if you go overseas? My children have been brought up only holidaying in this country! Whilst they have abroad on their own devices or with other family members, we have always stayed in the UK! And we have had the most amazing times, mountains, castles, beaches, sunshine, warm turquoise seas to swim in, excellent food and more laughs than I can to count! We have camped, stayed with friends, and rented houses from one end of this country to the other and I wouldn’t change it for the world!
So before you slam the Green party for wanting to put an end to cheap flights and ruin your summer – think about staying here, you don’t have to fly overseas to have a good time and maybe you’ll help boost a small business and our tourist trade by staying here! And remember that it will be boosting trade in your area too – after all someone else will be visiting near to you and improving local trade can only be a good thing for us all!
I haven’t touched on the whole school holiday / price hike thing – you really don’t want to get me started on that now! But maybe another time………..
Picture courtesy of https://www.flickr.com/photos/14589121@N00/