Peter Rhodes on a beautiful view, a cancelled market and hifalutin' language in space

Read the latest column from Peter Rhodes.

Next stop, the egress
Next stop, the egress

Heavily lobbied by the travel industry, the Government seems to be creating the impression that the pandemic is over. The official figures of 30,000 positive tests per day and hundreds of deaths, suggests otherwise.

And while the holiday companies may be exuding confidence, other organisations are looking ahead with more caution. In Leeds, for example, the popular German Christmas Market has been cancelled because of the Covid “uncertainty.” So who do you believe to be telling the truth about the pandemic - travel industry PR people or hard-nosed Yorkshire market folk?

When the Yanks fly into space their grammar goes grand. A space walk becomes “extra-vehicular activity” while the moon buggy was the “lunar excursion module.” The rule of space grammar seems to be, never use a simple word when something complicated will do. When the all-civilian space crew emerged from their three-day SpaceX jaunt at the weekend, a commentator announced that one had “just egressed the vehicle.” Or stepped out, as we Earthlings say.

The word “egress,” meaning exit, can be found in the earliest days of showbiz. The great entertainer P T Barnum (1810-91) noticed that visitors were lingering too long in Barnum's American Museum. He put up signs reading: “This Way to the Egress". The punters, assuming the egress was another fascinating exhibit, duly ended up outside.

This week's space-hyperbole award goes to SpaceX mission control which gushingly told the returning foursome: “Your mission has shown the world that space is for all of us.” All of us with a few million dollars, that is.

What do you do when hundreds of tourists pour into your hotel's rooftop bar to admire one of the finest sunset views in Britain? The answer, for a hotelier in St Brides Bay, Pembrokeshire, was to launch a new £200-a-year club and restrict part of his premises to members. I'm with him. Hotels have had a hell of a time during the pandemic and who can blame them now for charging what an old hotelier once cheerfully described to me as “whatever the market will stand”? From Solva to St Davids there are miles of beautiful views of St Brides Bay from the shore, all absolutely free. Only mugs need pay.

I could recommend a glorious view of St Brides Bay from Little Haven but, naturally, I'd have to charge you..

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