The photo on the home page shows an aeroplane’s vapour trail on a glorious summer’s evening. My most recent flight out of the UK was in fact a morning one, eventually leaving a little over an hour late out of Gatwick, heading for Cancun in Mexico. In this case, the delay had the prospect of being something more than just a mildly annoying glitch. The hotel we were staying at involved a boat journey from the mainland to an island, with the boat being supplied by the hotel. The potential worrisome aspect of this was that we had been told that the last boat back to the hotel was at 8 pm. Our flight was now not going to land until 6.15. What would happen if we, literally, missed the boat? A night kipping dockside did not appeal!

Anyhow, eventually the connection went smoothly (we were agreeably surprised to discover that Mexico recently did away with pre-arrival form-filling for passengers from the UK) and we made our transfer with about 20 minutes to spare, this despite the unwanted attentions of a customs officer who unsuccessfully rooted through all our luggage in a perfunctory kind of way in search for any excess cigarettes we might have packed.

A view of the Mexico coast as our British Airways flight prepared to begin its descent into Cancun last week

During the flight, I read a book and wrote a blog. (Obviously not this one.) My wife watched a couple of films, one of which she was especially pleased to find among those available. This was the original Die Hard, which she had never seen but had watched on the telly until she fell asleep halfway through while we were staying at our son’s over Christmas. So now she could find out what happened! But she was disappointed with the ending, although in common with everyone who has seen it, I think, she thought Alan Rickman was absolutely outstanding as the villain of the piece.

Finally, as regards travel in general, in the recent budget the Chancellor, Jeremy Hunt, announced more bad news for UK air passengers. We already pay more than any other citizens by way of tax on air fares, and that is going to get more so, especially for long-distance journeys. A one-off above-inflation increase will come into effect from April 2025 for passengers flying first-class or in business. There will be a rise in line with inflation for economy flights. However, rates on domestic and short-haul flights will be frozen. I guess we should be grateful for small mercies?