The airport wasn’t even five minutes behind me when I saw the monstrous billboard advertisement by Heineken.
Holiday troubles are part of the tradition, enjoy them.
Accurate, I told myself as we whizzed on past, weaving through the onslaught of mopeds and scooters. Mario Kart, but with more traffic. But this wasn’t a virtual reality. I had just touched down in the Indonesian island of Bali and this was not a drill. Due to the severe rainstorms and flash flooding that had unexpectedly hit the UAE, causing mayhem across the entire infrastructure, it was a miracle that I’d arrived at all. Delayed flights, and cancelled ones too, I’d made it! Despite the sleeping pills, the turbulence kept me awake, and I was still jet lagged, still on California timing. I needed a coffee. Or maybe an Aperol; I was finally on holiday after all, and surely, if the billboard was in fact right, I’d already encountered my share of ‘holiday troubles’. Bring on BAAALI!
“Well, Doctor S said that when it kicked in, I’d know… That it would be like finding light in the dark… I am not really sure that I am seeing the whole light yet?”
The doctor laughed from the bottom of his belly. “Listen, I wouldn’t quite word it as ‘poetically’ – shall we say – as Doctor S put it… but, the tablets are mainly to help build your confidence a bit, which will have a knock on effect on all the other aspects of your life.”
“Is the light more like when someone leaves the hall light on and the light shines through the gap under your bedroom door? Rather than the floodlight I was expecting?” I asked him as I got up to leave his office. He smiled, “Give it time, Pam! Come back and see me in June. And enjoy your holiday!”
“January is going to be our year.” I was Skyping with my overseas bestie a couple of days before Hogmanay (that’s what us Scots call New Years Eve by the way). I thought ahead to my January work pattern and felt a tidal wave of giddy wash over mewhen I thought about the two weeks of annual leave that needed filled with some plans. Yeah, this year is going to be the year I travel more and actually have some more adventures, I told her.
Fast forward to the first week of February, and if that first month was a taster for the year ahead, then please tell me that the first month is just a trial run?
Packing is high up on the list of chores that I would 110% rather not do. It features much higher than hanging up washing, and just slightly lower than mopping the floor or putting clean sheets on a super king sized duvet (alone).
But fear not, babies, for I am here to guide you through the dreaded chore. With holiday season fast approaching, I am going to tell you my own personally designed Pamela Violets ultimate guide to packing. I am going to tell you what you should be taking, and what you definitely should not be taking.