Roll on the Great British Bank Holiday. A delightful long weekend in which important, tired and hard-working people get to rest their weary heads, and less important but equally as tired and hard-working FTM’s get to, quite frankly, carry on regardless. A joyful time in which the Great British Public love to either a) inebriate themselves over three consecutive days, whilst manning a succession of dwindling tinfoil BBQs in the pissing rain, wearing T-shirt and shorts, b) spend quality time with husbands, wives, partners and children, engaging in cohesive and incredibly fun activities, such as Twister, Jenga and Junior Trivial Pursuit or c) a bit of both, more commonly known as boozed-up childcare in the rain. Whichever way you choose to spend your Bank Holiday though, one thing is for sure: The Great British Bank Holiday simply wouldn’t be the same without a Great British Queue.
And do we Brits know how to queue. Orderly and patient with that stiff upper lip for which we are world-renowned, we line up, shut up and wait. We brace ourselves through the cold, the wind and the rain. We penetrate the pain barrier and fight off the frustration in spite of the never-ending, curling snake of people ahead of us. And with the end goal firmly in sight, we accept the adversity with a stoic calmness and self-restraint that only the Great British Public know how. I say “we,” but what I really mean is “you”. For with less of the deferential British and more of the fiery Mediterranean temperament, my style of queuing generally involves the brief dutiful line up, some bad-tempered tutting, followed by some huffing, puffing, sweating and panting, before exploding into a steaming tirade of blasphemous abuse, weeping pitifully into a tissue and quitting the sodding queue. Whatever wondrous and bright shining light is awaiting me at the end of the deep dark tunnel is simply not worth it. Well, not unless it happens to coincide with the Great British Bank Holiday, in which case, I’m screwed.
For on the Great British Bank Holiday, you can rest assured that there will be a queue around every corner. In every supermarket, in every shop, in every car park, in every park, in every pub and indeed in every gd’dam public place. A long and burgeoning queue, ready to gobble you up and chew you over for an infinite amount of time, before ungraciously spitting you out at the other end. A tedious and testing train of people and/or people in cars, that makes you want to question not only your own mental health for venturing out on this most conspicuous of days, but also your own very sad existence. I ask myself then, why on earth does anyone of sound mind choose to leave their house on such a tortuous day? Why does anyone who is sodding SANE voluntarily go forth into the masses, only to be swallowed alive for want of a bloody BBQ? And more importantly, why would I, on a recent GBBH, sheepishly AGREE to follow the crowds and head to the UK’s top tourist attraction on the busiest day of the stinking year?
Foolish? Yes. Held to ransom? Absolutely! By excitable young kinder who had forevermore committed to memory the precise second in which the words Lego + Land were uttered under Mum and Dad’s breath. By three Terror Tots whose new sole purpose in life was to imprison their piteous parents in a plastic fantastic world of adventure, lined with Legobrick roads, Duplo towers and candy floss castles. A seventh circle of rollercoaster hell, where the greasy stench of burgers, donuts and chips fills the air and Doomsday music floods the tannoy. A place of parental purgatory, where 70 minute queues culminate in 2 minute rickety rides – that’s 72 arduous and hazardous minutes of your life that you will never get back. Sadly for us Parents though, we can’t eradicate the stuff our children’s dreams are made of and according to the Boss Babies of this house, what better time to make dreams happen than on the Great British Bank Holiday? What better way to create memories, than with the 10,000 other similar-minded mad-men venturing out to Trip Advisor’s No1 must-see? Doomed! There was no loop-hole to wrangle out of and consequently, there was no escaping the queues this time. I had no choice but to leave my place of cosy, cotton-wool, comfort and bear the consequences of the Great British Bank Holiday, where the fun just never ends.
And so, for all you excited folk out there, when observing the next three days of GBBH fun, in which, by the way, promises must be kept and memories must be made, my advice to you is thus:
- DON’T make promises.
- DON’T make plans.
- DON’T BLOODY GO OUT.
- Oh and finally, DO invest in a proper BBQ and a gd’dam umbrella. You know you’re going to need it.