August eh? What is it with August that so many people feel obliged to take holidays in this month of all months? Of course some (as I remember with a shudder) are obliged to - notably parents of school-age children. But the rest - what are they playing at?
In August, if you holiday in this country, you can be sure of overcrowding everywhere, rip-off prices, no peace and quiet - and, like as not, appalling weather. If it's not tipping down - the usual thing for an English August - it gets oppressively, hideously hot, then turns thundery and starts tipping it down again. Meanwhile, the nights are drawing in - not by much, I grant you, but the balmy days of sitting out late into the evening are pretty much gone by August. Then, if you go abroad, you can be sure of all of the first three horrors, plust intolerable heat and, most likely, deafening cicadas.
In my book, virtually any month is preferable to August - for a summer holiday, June and July are far better bets in all respects. August is for working through, in the hope of taking a later break in Indian Summer weather: perfect. Yet the cult of the August holiday trundles on. I guess its one benign effect is that politicians are also in thrall to it, so at least things go quiet on the domestic political front and we're not assailed with daily 'initiatives' and other bright ideas (though I was vaguely aware of some idiot floating the idea of a Bill of Rights the other day).
Meanwhile, the Russians, clearly sharing my disdain for August holidays, decide it's time for a spot of war and invading, while the holidaying world looks on aghast and powerless...