Reasons why it's probably best never to go on holiday in the first place

So, I had a week in Tenby. (NO, I hear you say!  You never DID!)

Now I've had a week back at work.

And I've been comparing the two.

I will tell you some of the differences.  But only some, because if I think about this for too long, I will need to pour myself another measure of neat meths and crushed glass, and I've already had three.


When I woke up to Tenby's dawn chorus, I thought, like Wordsworth would've, 'Oh, how the sound of that bird enriches my soul.'  Last Monday, first day back at work, I thought, 'I'd like to fry that blackbird in some very hot oil'.

When in Tenby, I had refreshing sleep and woke up each morning convinced I was a real person who could move and breathe and stretch and get up.  Last Monday morning, when the alarm went off for work, I realised this was not true.  I was really a log.


In Tenby, lunchtimes lasted from half an hour to five hours.  Sometimes they started at 10.30 or finished at 7 in the evening.  Sometimes I had fish and chips and apple crumble with custard.  Sometimes a full three course meal with wine and chocolates.  Sometimes three rum and raisin icecreams and a Snickers.  (Sometimes I had indigestion.)

At work, lunchtimes have lasted from 35 seconds to 47 seconds.  Sometimes I had crackers with soft cheese.  Sometimes I had crackers with hard cheese.  Sometimes I had crackers with marmalade, if there was no cheese in the fridge.  Sometimes I had crackers which didn't crack because I had to leave them until the end of the day and they went 'thwup' when I bit into them.  (At work, I'd kneel and beg for a chance of indigestion.)


In Tenby, I read not just the news but all the back pages with the 'Nature Notes You're Not Really Interested In', the 'Scrabble Challenge You Don't Understand', the 'Extremely Impractical Recipe for the Day With Rocket and Hand-Carved Sausage' and the 'What the Queen and All Her Relations Have Been Doing' columns.

When at work, the only newspaper I have seen this week was the one the man on the bench outside my departmental office was reading.  Yes, that man who had his legs stretched out and who was spending a good ten minutes on each page before leisurely turning over.  That man whose head nearly had my stapler, hole punch and copy of The Complete Austen thrown at it.

The weather

In Tenby, the warm sun was a friendly yellow ball in the sky, a friend, an ally, something to be thankful for.  The absence of rain was a blessing.

While I've been working this week, the warm sun has been a malicious entity, oozing yellow spite from its core, something to swear at.  I would have welcomed rain, especially if it had fallen on that man's newspaper and made it the same consistency as my end-of-day crackers.

Oh, Tenby, Tenby, Tenby.  You made me love you, even though I didn't wanna do it, I didn't wanna do it.  You made me love you, and all the time you knew it, I bet you always knew it.

And a week back at work has only confirmed how I feel about you.


  1. Sounds as if you could be well on the way to advanced 'sundaynightitis', a condition that ruins every Sunday evening with recurring visions of what Monday morning will bring. Unfortunately a complete cure is only possible by surgical separation from current employment. However, extra large doses of chocolate and/or glasses of red wine, will give temporary respite.

  2. Ugh work!! Tenby sounds delightful! Even though I have no clue where it is, somewhere in the UK i'm assuming. Anyway, I want to go there.

  3. Tenby sounds really boring, all that lovey-dovey coochicoo stuff.

    Aren't you glad you are back to being your miserable, cross-patchy, harassed, frustrated, spitting nails self again?

    What on earth would you blog about if all were endlessly sweetness and light?

    Glad to have the real Fran back.

  4. I must get myself to Tenby! Do you work for the Tenby Tourism Board as an undercover agent? If not, they should employ you. It sounds fab!

  5. Your comfy, unpretentious, middle-aged Tenby reminds of the wife whose husband leaves her after 35 years of marriage, only to have him much later turn up on the doorstep with hat in hand.
    It's all right, Fran. Maybe you'll e able to retire to Tenby one day. Meanwhile, you are doing THE most admirable, essential job ON THE PLANET. Absolutely serious.

  6. Martin - Thanks for the chocolate/wine tip. I will get in further supplies.

    KarenG - It's Wales. See the picture in my sidebar and click on it.

    Friko - shucks. You know the real Me too well.

    Talli - thanks for the idea. See top of sidebar. I'm awaiting all the calls.

  7. The trouble with Tenby is it's a commitmentphobe. A week or two and then it runs, can't handle the pressure of such an intense relationship. Work is mundane and always there. Sometimes that's a curse, sometimes a blessing. In time you will see it as a comfort. Keep Tenby as your bit on the side. A little excitement once a year. That way the relationship will always stay new and fresh. You'll have that wonderful honeymoon period every year. ;-)

  8. Did you go to tenby? not sure you mentioned...

    Glad you had a loely time! xx

  9. Anonymous25/4/10 05:24

    Tenby sounds lovely :0) I love Wales but have only ventured as far as Rhyl... now there's another story!!

  10. Oh, I hear ya! I'll have to go to tenby if I move to Aberystwyth - it can't be that far apart, can it? Wales isn't that big after all:)

  11. Deborah - you're right - Tenby would be a great place to retire to. Is 48 too young to retire?

    Steve - very good advice. I will try to keep my love for Tenby in check. It's hard, though. It's hard.

    Billygean - did I not say? Perhaps I should write a post about it.

    Eternally Distracted - Looking forward to the Rhyl story. Maybe we could work together on a series called 'Things That Happened in Welsh Towns'. Sounds like a hit to me.

    Alexandra Crocodile - You must go. The Wall is just the best collection of old stones you'll ever have seen.

  12. So the best thing about going on holiday ... isn't the coming home bit, eh?

  13. Tenby sounds nice. I would love long delicious lunches.

  14. JJ - I'm glad you got my drift. I swear I was being pretty obscure.

    WW - You just have to watch out for the seagulls. They love to partake in your long delicious lunches too. And they're fast. And vicious.

  15. Fran, I gave you an award on my blog today :)

  16. Do I detect sarcasm? I used to study archaeology, you know - I just love me some old stones:)

  17. Think of Tenby as a tantalising affair. If you ran off to live there permanently you'd only get bored after a while - familiarity breeds contempt etc. etc.

    No? Well it was worth a try.

  18. KarenG - how did you know it was my birthday tomorrow? Yay, presents!

    Alexandra - Sarcasm? Moi?

    Karen - No, you're right, you're right. Sob.

  19. I think we should all move to Tenby.


  20. Suzanne - I think if everyone moved to Tenby that would risk them running out of rum and raisin ice cream, and me doing cold turkey from rum and raisin ice cream is not a pretty sight.


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