I’m sure we all do it. The suitcase has been unpacked (or in our case, anything which won’t be worn until next summer has been tipped into one suitcase and hidden under the bed). The “suntan” has faded from slightly pink back to a shade of grey akin to a dishcloth. The photos have been reviewed, bikini shots and anything taken post-tequila deleted, and uploaded onto Facebook with witty comments. And yet we still cling onto our holiday memories and hark back to what we were doing “this time last week”.
Whilst tipping our cornflakes into a bowl, we reminisce about how “this time last week, we were having a champagne breakfast, watching the sunrise over the sea”. Even though this time last week we were actually queuing behind a loud Cockney man arguing with the chef, a small screaming child and two purple-haired pensioners fighting over the last congealing spoonful of baked beans.
Whilst ironing and folding a never-ending mountain of clothes, we recall how “this time last week, we were strolling hand-in-hand down the beach, the sun beating down on our slightly-bronzed shoulders”. Nope, this time last week we were actually picking our way across a rocky outcrop in nothing but flip-flops made of a tissue and an elastic band, hopping across a patch of sand so hot it may have been volcanic lava, and covered in patches of calamine lotion to soothe the prickly heat rash which has sprung up on any exposed patch of skin.
Whilst catching up on last week’s Great British Bake Off, we ponder on how “this time last week, we were watching amazing, five-star entertainment whilst sipping expertly poured cocktails”. We weren’t. This time last week, we were watching a female singer murder “popular” songs by Adele and Lady Gaga, a guitarist who played a 37-minute version of Eric Clapton’s “You Look Wonderful Tonight”, whilst sipping cocktails which were one quarter tequila, three quarters ice and a paper umbrella.
And when next week comes? It’ll be “do you remember what we were doing this time two weeks ago?” And then “this time a month ago?” There’s only one cure for this. Plan the next trip. So we can ask:
“What do you think we’ll be doing this time next year/month/week?”
N.B. All tales are of course greatly exaggerated. Apart from the 37-minute version of “You Look Wonderful Tonight”. Sadly, that did happen.