Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Our First Venture: into Fuerteventura was in 1998 for the 25th wedding anniversary. Neither Mrs B nor I had flown before, and that Canary island was recommended for being laid-back rather than discos pumping away into the wee small hours.
Corralejo, at the most northern point of the island, was also chosen by the holiday company. (It was cheaper, the further south you go, the more expensive - sunshine increases the cost, it seems). We liked it, and returned for 7 or 8 years thereafter. Then we spread our wings and visited Thailand, twice; the second time with two days in Bangkok before travelling on to Phuket. Everyone recommends Bangkok, not only for it's culture, but also for the Pat Pong Road, which amongst other must-do's, were incuded on our itinerary.
Then in 2005, a very cheap trip to Kenya was too good to turn down.
After my heart op, and Mrs B's tinitus, which drove her nuts when the cabin pressure changed during take-off and landing, we didn't go anywhere until Tenerife last year.
Back in Corralejo for the first time in 8 years last week, and chosen to celebrate my 60th year; the streets, bars, and restaurants were noticeably quiet. The owners blamed the recession, and admittedly, the airpane had around 50 empty seats, but it wasn't and isn't to blame for that huge downturn in business.
No, the main reason is fly-drive.
The younger generations step from the plane and straight into a car, and are out and about all day, thus causing this massive lack of people spending money in Corralejo.
Yet the older generations, myself and Mrs B included, who enjoy NOT driving and NOT doing everything we went on holiday to avoid, stayed in town and enjoyed everything it had on offer.
But things were noticeably quieter, and Brits who moved there to live and work are becoming worried.
It will pass, no doubt, but not without some of those once 'gold mine' bars and restaurants falling victim to the tightening of the UK's purse strings.
Let's hope the hay they made whilst their finacial sun shone will be enough to see them through to the other side of these tough times.