No, not Corfu! This was the headline in a UK tabloid yesterday, predicting the weather for the next few days. Great shame since it is the last week of the school holidays!
At the same time I was belatedly reading a Sunday Times article where one of their journalists had decided to be economic and stay at home in Britain this year for the annual family holiday.
Surprise, surprise, it wasn’t economic and they spent most of their time sheltering from the weather. She finished the article by saying that 2008 was their last ‘summer’ holiday in the UK. And of course she is not alone. So many people envisage their annual holiday as being more expensive than staying in Britain, and yet those of use who live here, or visit regularly, know that the traditional holiday pastimes cost less (or nothing) here.
It costs nothing to walk every morning with the kids along the beach (in the sun). It costs less for the family to go out and have a memorable meal, and the kids will actually be appreciated and enjoyed by the locals, instead of just tolerated as they are in England. And a trip with a local boatman will cost pennies and give hours of fun.
Holidaying in Corfu does not require much luggage. In the UK you need ‘all weather’ gear, for Corfu you need your favourite t-shirts and shorts and a little number for the evenings, that’s all.
Agreed, to come to Corfu you have to suffer airports and flights – but after that a maximum of an hour gets you to your destination and virtually whatever time you arrive there will usually be somewhere to get a coffee or food, or even have a swim. In Britain you might well suffer five or six hours trapped in a car only to arrive in the rain and be told the restaurant closed at 9.00 pm (9.00!!!!).
Could these be just a few of the reasons we decided to live here and why so many northern Europeans buy their holiday homes here, whether they buy a small village house, a convenient house near the beach or a super luxury villa.
For so many Corfu represents a haven for people looking for a peaceful, easily accessible holiday home – and then, in so many cases, a permanent home.