As I lay on my sun lounger, deciding which cocktail to choose from the all-inclusive menu, I gaze out wistfully to sea, and smile gently at the thought of colleagues back in rainy Britain, bashing away at a keyboard.
I pick up my book, pages filled with sand and smothered with sun tan lotion, and settle down for another un-interrupted chapter.
All I can hear is the waves rolling in, and the distant sound of music from the beach bar.
And then the bickering begins.
“But he started it, he kicked over my sand castle,” shouts the little girl.
“No I didn’t,” screams back her brother. “You started it when you nicked my ball.”
“Oh stop it, the pair of you,” comes a voice, weary with frustration.
It’s the sounds of a family holiday, five days in when the novelty of the kids’ club, crazy golf and sunshine are beginning to wear off.
I wouldn’t mind, but the children are clearly old enough to be at school, and it’s term time when they should be in school. And they’re not the only ones.
When there are youngsters in this world who will walk miles every day just to go to class, where getting an education for your children is something you are prepared to sacrifice everything for, it is strange that some parents in this country have forgotten how important learning is.
Yes, taking a holiday outside term-time is expensive, but the holiday companies aren’t doing anything illegal. They are a business and to survive, they need to make money. If you don’t want to hand over your cash, then don’t.
We couldn’t afford foreign holidays when I was a child. Instead we packed up a giant orange tent, piled the back seat of our car with sleeping bags and pillows and set off to the West Country or Norfolk.
I do understand it must be a nightmare trying to bring up children and afford the daily basics, let alone pay for after-school clubs, breakfast clubs, weekend hobbies, the latest trend in trainers and then a holiday.
At least if you go in peak time, you get the best of the weather too. I haven’t taken a holiday in July or August for years, which means I usually end up with two weeks in the Lake District in March, with suitcases packed full of wet weather gear.
But that’s my choice. I’d rather pay less and play weather roulette. And if it bothered me that much, I could always go abroad and fork out a little more for an adults-only hotel.
What worries me about taking children out of school is the message it sends, that school doesn’t really matter; that it’s OK to bunk off.
A relaxation of the term-time holiday ban was needed. I watched a colleague go through turmoil as she waited to hear if her child’s school was going to fine her £60 for taking her daughter out of school for one day so she could go back to Ireland for Holy Communion. It was money she could ill afford but a rite of passage her daughter should not miss.
Now, with the new rules allowing children to attend family weddings or funerals, recover after a personal or family crisis, attend a religious event or visit a relative who is seriously ill, she would not have to worry. And for things like that, she shouldn’t.
But schools need to take responsibility too, and drop the end-of-term wind down when the last few days are sometimes spent watching videos or playing games, so parents realise every day at school is worth it.