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Not in France

I’ve got nearly a week off work, with leave that was booked well before Covid Lockdown. Today I ought to be having a glass of wine over dinner in Lille, having spent the day exploring WW1 battlefields and some of the Commonwealth War Graves cemeteries in northern France and Belgium. It would have been another of my historical-themed holidays, with a knowledgeable tour leader, but also a good amount of free time to explore independently and find some nice restaurants. Obviously, that’s all been cancelled. Instead I spent all yesterday morning queueing outside Waitrose in Malvern!

Although legally the holiday company is obliged to give me a full cash refund since they cancelled the holiday, they have followed the example set by ABTA and most of the rest of the travel industry, and just offered me a credit note, to be used against a future holiday with them. I can’t be too cross about that – if they had to pay out to everyone they would definitely go bankrupt, whereas this way there is a chance that they might be around next year to run the holiday. The refund is bonded by ABTA, so should be protected, and worst case I paid by credit card so I could get my money back that way.

The holiday company hopes to run the WW1 Battlefield trip again this time next year. But that’s going to be dependent on the UK lifting its ban on foreign travel, France and Belgium being prepared to let foreigners in, travel insurance being available at a reasonable price, and there’s the little matter of Brexit which may (or may not) have happened by then. So many unknowns. There’s little point in worrying about it now.

Instead, I shall make the most of having a few days off work. I’ve been finding working from home very tiring and draining. So although I won’t get a change of scene, I should at least get a bit of a rest.