Walking in Windsor yesterday I came across a young man armed with a bucket full of soapy water, a bamboo cane and a net.  With this basic equipment he was able to make giant bubbles that lolloped unhurriedly through the air. As I watched, I wondered what it would be like to travel in one of those large bubbles; Bentley bubbles, travelling effortlessly, offering a temporary respite from the concerns of the outside world.

Having just returned from a heavenly week in the Veneto organised by Martin Randall Travel, it occurred to me that we had all been cocooned in a large bubble, floating happily between Palladian villas where we listened to uplifting lectures and music (crucial  to be uplifted when you are in a bubble!).  Our lecturers were knowledgeable and amusing – a winning combination.  The music by Monteverdi, Vivaldi and others perfectly matched the beautiful venues, many designed by Andrea Palladio himself, the greatest of villa architects (1508 – 1580).  The audience, experienced and appreciative, was content to wallow in the bubble, willing it to stay afloat for as long as possible.

But, like all bubbles, an MRT music festival comes to an end. You are left in no doubt that the bubble has burst as soon as you reach Gatwick and have to wait for over an hour for your luggage to reach the carousel.  It’s a shock to find you are back at the mercy of incompetent people.  By contrast, the MRT team radiate quiet competence.  In unguarded moments they consult a detailed document setting out The Master Plan, with columns, no doubt, for contingencies.  Goodness knows what extra information The Master Plan could possibly contain for we all have our own booklets, 112 pages long, with everything consenting adults could possibly want to know.

Adjusting to life outside the MRT bubble is troublesome; back to creating your own agenda, to choices and irksome decision making.  Never mind, there is no perception without contrast and the contrast between life in and out of the bubble is incentive enough to book a trip in the next enlightened bubble.


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