Last night I enjoyed a pleasant “thought chain”.
A thought chain is when I think idly about a topic and that thinking leads to a totally different topic which in turn leads to another. Those chains can lead to some weird and wonderful thoughts.
I had been browsing through some of the hundreds of photographs I had taken in France over the years. They brought back wonderful memories and I could almost feel the heat, taste the tastes and smell the smells. We aren’t going to France this year and that led to the question – how will that affect me. The answer is of course that it won’t.
It then struck me that holidays are a little like smoking – expensive, incurring a certain risk and providing intangible benefits but very enjoyable. That led to the question – how would a self-righteous anti-smoker regard a holiday?
Our self-righteous friend would start off with the dangers and downsides.
Think of the risks incurred in driving on the “wrong” side of the road. By driving long distances in a short space of time also increases the risk of an accident. I risk damaging my health through eating “foreign” food and drinking “foreign” water. Think of the risks involved in taking a ferry trip – the ship could sink or I could fall overboard? By taking these risks, I could affect my extended family. [Think of the grandcheeeldren"]
Of course he [or she] would have to introduce the concept of “Second Hand Holidays”
He would point out that I am damaging Ireland by spending my money abroad. He would say that by showing my photographs to others I would run the risk of making them take their holidays in France also. The mere sight of one photograph could cause thousands to take their holidays abroad.
He would accuse me of impinging on other peoples rights by talking about my holiday. His catchphrase would be “we don’t want to suffer from your holiday experience. We have rights too”
He would finally point out the expense to myself and my family and the complete lack of any tangible benefits.
To an extent he is right.
What do I actually get out of a holiday?
I get warm, or even hot weather. I enjoy different food and wines. I see wonderful sights. I experience a different culture. Above all, I relax.
I am well aware that a month on, all I will have to show for it is some photographs and a fading tan but what I have is the enjoyment of an experience. Why else would I go? Why else would anyone take a holiday?
The problem with the self-righteous is that they cannot see the positive side. To them, everything is a risk, no matter how imaginary, that must be eliminated. They cannot understand how something may be done just for the enjoyment. If they can’t see a positive side to something then that thing must be eradicated.
Maybe they should take a holiday?