I've read a fair amount of columns of late on holidaying with others. It seems the perfect recession-busting solution.
That's going away, living with people who you aren't related to, who you don't love. Signing up to spend 24/7 with people for 7 long, long days and nights. Days that'll for sure be seasoned with increasingly snide remarks and nights spent, fingers angrily in ears, trying not to listen to the snoring or, much worse still, shagging of (former) friends.
Friends these days have kids too. This can mean one of two things; either your kids will be the 'rebels' the ones who don't adhere to the strict 'polite' criteria of the other family. Perhaps they don't ask if they can leave the table, maybe they burp at will or don't have to finish their gazpacho before pudding. Other family's rules can be a mysterious code to fathom, a process full of pitfalls. Some children I know are forbidden to say "no", "mine" or "can't". My kids are allowed to say any words they choose, not the four letter variety obviously. But how can you holiday with all these many, varied and, frankly, abstract rules at play without a sense of injustice?
Or perhaps your little angels will be showing the philistine brats belonging to your no-longer-friends for what they are; in-polite, un-intelligent thugs. You'll start the week smiling with pseudo-nonchalance and end it in over-the-top far-too-loud compliments of your own sprogs; "well done darling for asking, yes you may leave the table", which serve the basic purpose of inferring, "and you didn't ask you barbarian-child".
See, I like a holiday with my family. They're nice and their quirks are so familiar they can never annoy me. My children rarely remember to ask when to get down, we've had pudding for starters on occasion. We don't do this all the time obviously, but on holiday we like to be a little chilled...
So will I holiday with anyone who I didn't marry or give birth to? Not likely. I like my friends and I think some of them might even like us, let's keep it that way.