Since the mid-90s I have spent nearly every one of the early May Bank Holiday weekend in Salcombe, Devon. It’s always the same group of friends. Kids are not invited. We spend our time chatting, drinking, eating and shopping. We always stay at the same place – a three bed flat in the centre of town owned by one of my friends. It’s just one of those annual rituals that we all look forward to and enjoy.
Last year I decided it was time to bring my family to Salcombe. I also felt it was time that I explored the local area and that required more than a long weekend. So I booked to stay at the flat for the May half-term this year.
As a rule, I never go on holiday to the same place twice. The world’s too big and there’s too many wonderful places to explore. I have to keep moving, but in my mind I’m always looking for the place where I’d like to buy a second home. The only time I’ve ever broken this rule is Israel (it’s a fascinating country)
But this holiday was different – and this is why:
1) I knew where I was going and so there was no threat of getting lost before we arrived at our destination. There was no travel anxiety.
2) I knew that it didn’t matter if I forgot to pack anything – I know where the local Boots, Spar and clothes shops are. I wouldn’t have to waste time getting to know what’s available locally.
3) I know which are the best restaurants and how to book a good table. We didn’t eat a single bad meal.
4) I didn’t have to waste time trying to understand how the local ferry operated. All our journeys worked like clockwork which in turn avoided any grumpy or bored children.
…….I could go on, but I think you understand where I’m leading with this.
I felt a surge of excitement as I approached the flat – something that I’ve never felt on holiday before. I realised as I walked along the country lanes that I genuinely love this part of the world. I have grown-up with Salcombe and I have so many fantastic memories.
I finally understood the benefit of returning to the same place over & over again. It makes life so much easier, and as a result, made the holiday more enjoyable. It’s not always about discovering new places, it’s about enjoying the places we already know and love.