I’ve never ever understood the mentality that Britain is Great.
When we hop across to France, Belgium, Holland, Germany, Italy, Spain et al, I have never once thought “not as nice as Scunthorpe” or “I prefer Oldham” or “Blackpool tower has better views.”
That’s why the Brexit vote bewildered me. Okay it was predicated on lies painted on buses, but surely anyone with a modicum of sense can see that continental Europe top trumps Little Britain for everything.
- Road network
- Food and drink
- Cost of living
- The weather
Yet 52% voted to Leave this on the deluded belief that Britain would be better off alone.
Hence the trip to Paris at Christmas before the doomsday predictions for March 2019 see us marooned and that 26 mile channel gulf widening further.
We’ve other motives too – we last went 8 years ago in summer and our daughter has only vague recollections of the Louvre, the Eiffel Tower, yet oddly can recall the street hawkers selling bottled water then waterproof capes when the heavens opened.
Son James turns 18 next week, and having his mum’s flair for languages, intends to study French (and English Literature) for degree next year at the University of Warwick. It’s his birthday treat too.
I like travel. It does broaden the mind. I love city breaks, having experienced Berlin recently and Rome the year before. I’m no fan of London though, to be honest but Paris is something I’m keenly anticipating.
I wish we had the backbone of the French too – would they have let Brexit happen? Doubt it, they blockade streets over the cost of living. Would they have allowed the pernicious privatisation of schools, like we did with Multi Academy Trusts (who I don’t trust)? No.
As we cross the channel (keeping it real, driving from Great Yarmouth to Paris) and the bluebirds yammer over the white cliffs and we set off to Paris from Calais, I’ll take one backward glance and ask:
”British people, why did you believe Farage, Gove, Johnson et al? Why do you want to cut yourself off from this road trip?”
I will showcase all on Instagram if you need further convincing.