War Holidays – Published Jan 2006

Keep seeing this ad in various newspapers.

Each time I do I ask C if we can go on a War Holiday this year. Surely it’s the perfect way of keeping things in perspective and avoiding those silly holiday squabbles.

You sit on a hillside rubbing on sun lotion and she says ‘You gone and lost the phrasebook, you hopeless twunt’ …and you can reply by saying, ‘Sweetheart, 200,000 men were mustard-gassed to death in this very spot. Pass me that copy of last Tuesday’s Express and be quiet.’

My preference would be a WW2 holiday, since that was one of your better wars, with goodies and baddies, and we won.

However, those in the know apparently plump for history’s maddest, least excitng and cheapest-to-film war: WW1.

When you see just what’s on offer you begin to understand why. These are real, my disrespectful comments added in brackets.

1. It’s a long way to Tipperary – Ypres, Vimy Ridge and the Somme 24-27 March, 2-5 June, 11-14 August, 22-25 September (Perfect for all the family. Book early.)
2. Christ Church Tour, Verdun / Somme Commemoration 10-15 April 2006 (Not for families with younger children or pets. However, pigeons welcome.)
3. The Ypres Salient 4-7 May 2006 (Enjoy a picnic, a glass of local wine and three years of the most relentless bloodshed and death the western hemisphere has so far been able to manage.)
4. Feeding the Front – Logistics of the Great War 5-8 May 2006 (One for the more technically minded annihilation enthusiast.)
5. Road to Victory 1918 19-22 May 2006 (A very short road that took four years, millions of lives and a lot of cocoa to travel.)
6. Gallipoli 25-29 May 2006 (One for the sun-seeking death-worshipper.)
7. Verdun and The Somme – 90th Anniversary Commemorative Tour 29 June-2 July 2006 (Bring your daughter to the slaughter? And your son. Heck, bring the whole family. Pretend you’re an English Tommy and walk slowly, sensibly into the German machine-gun fire when the King tells you to.)
8. The Somme – 90th Anniversary Commemorative Tour 29 June-2 July 2006 (Enjoy the fun, buy the t-shirt.)
9. 1916 Forgotten Battles 16-19 July 2006 (Be amazed by what you missed, The Battle of North Acton, the 14-18 Milkman Skirmish and the amazing Half-Hour Siege of Lille Bus Station.)
10. Flanders 1918 and the Armistice 8-11 November 2006 (Okely Dokely Neighbour!)



‘Tim’ left this comment on 30 Jan 06
That would be nice (a nice touch would be to play Pipes of Peace by Paul McCartney in the background).
My Mum used to say, after we’d all opened our presents, ‘it’s like the Somme in ‘ere’ … in this case it quite literally would be. Of course younger kids would struggle with the irony

‘Dogs Must Be Carried’ left this comment on 30 Jan 06
Do they do a festive tour that takes in an England vs. Germany match on Christmas Day? Just wondering…


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