Thursday 18 October 2012

An assault on the senses

All is not sweetness, love and light here on the Mediterranean shores of the flying paradise that is Oludeniz. I'm here for the 13th Annual Air Games which should be a festival of exuberant free flying fun with displays of supreme airmanship, extreme acrobatic ability and superhuman nuttiness, on all of which I shall report in due course. But first there are a few matters to address.

First, of course, there were the mosquitoes, now sorted out by a combination of soothing unguents for me and extreme aggression for them. The final solution for the mosquito population of the hotel room has been a success and we have eradicated malaria from the region. I'm expecting a World Health Organisation citation at any moment.

The other room-based affront to my health and general welfare is my co-habitant’s snoring. Not possible to measure accurately in decibels, Luke’s nasal tremors are more easily recorded on the Richter scale; an Avro Vulcan on take-off would barely register above the din. The solution to that, it appears, is mouldable silicon ear plugs and weird though it is to go to sleep cocooned against the world of sound, I finally slept a full seven hours blissfully unaware of his nightly struggle with respiration. Had Armageddon arrived I would have been the last to know.

Oh and there’s the temperature range, of course; it’s 30-plus on the ground, but near-freezing at altitude. The solution was to ditch the flying clothes and go for shorts and tee-shirts, suffering a bit of a chill after take-off in order not to burn up on re-entry to the beach-o-sphere. And then, at the end of the day, to take a prolonged dip in the breathtakingly cool depths of the hotel pool.

But there’s one more obstacle to enjoying the holiday. We have jointly managed the various assaults on our numerous senses. We have conquered pain and disease and discomfort, but my oh my, what about a senses of style? What fresh hell is this? People from all over the world are congregating here this weekend, flaunting the latest in flying gear, leisure wear and cool, cool threads. So why in the hell would the East Europeans think it was acceptable to take to the promenade in fashion throwbacks from the seventies?

My eyes! I thought budgie smuggling had been abolished long ago. The last time I saw trunks that skimpy they were being sported by the late Sir Jimmy Savile, in preparation for a charity fun-rummage through a local children’s home.

Do have a lovely day, if your retinas have not been irrevocably damaged by that image.

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