'So I was good enough for you during the hard times but now you've run off to your fancy villa in Greece?'

By your Welsh holiday cottage

OH, you were glad enough of me in 2020. And 2021. You fell into my loving embrace and told me how important I was to you. But where are you now? F**king Zante.

I remember when I first welcomed you through my charming oaken doors. ‘My God how I need this,’ you told me, in that heady August. ‘This is incredible. I feel so blessed.’ And I? I believed every word.

The time we had together seemed so precious. You’d just got out of a stifling relationship with your home where you felt trapped and cut off from the world. I’d been lonely for longer than I’d ever been. It was a match made in heaven.

That summer of 2020 it was like we rediscovered ourselves and each other. It felt so good having you inside me. You’d had your dalliances with Tuscan retreats in the past, but it felt like finally you’d grown up enough to know what you had at home.

And last year? You proved it was real by coming back to me. By showing it wasn’t a one-time thing. By returning to the shores of Cardiganshire and to my quartz-veined mudstone for a second rapturous holiday.

I know it rained. I know there were times when you didn’t want to play another board game. But didn’t I protect you? Didn’t I keep you warm, and cherished, and loved?

So when the end of July came around again, I was trembling with anticipation. To once again feel the tracks of your wheeled suitcase on my uneven floor. To have your firm, confident hand sign me right in the visitors’ book.

And where are you? The first summer travel restrictions are relaxed you’re straight on a plane to hot, exotic Zante. You unfaithful, lying arsehole.

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Conversation should be impossible: How to make a bar truly hellish

DO you frequently wonder why noisy, unpleasant bars need to be quite so horrific? Here Martin Bishop, owner of shite cocktail bar Lorenzo’s of Stevenage, explains his craft.

Abnormally loud music 

Deafening music creates an irresistible vibe. It definitely isn’t just too loud. Basically you should only be able to talk to the person next to you, and then only by shouting at them. Attempting to join in a conversation with two friends should be impossible and make you look like a weirdo hassling strangers by sitting with them uninvited.

No one should ever pull 

The stupidly loud music is your main weapon against flirtation. Try being witty or friendly when you have to spit in someone’s ear. More generally, your bar should look like a fun, sexy place but disappointment should always ensue.

Employ obvious dickheads as bar staff

Sneering dickheads who ignore customers and clearly think they’re doing an incredibly important job are good. But the real opportunities come with a cocktail bar. Now staff can shout at each other, show off with the shakers, dance around annoyingly and wear backwards baseball caps. People love having a row of screaming f**kwits down one side of the room they’re trying to have a drink in.

Be open late 

This means you scoop up drinkers who want to continue the evening’s fun. Instead they find themselves stuck in your joyless trendy bar drinking small bottles of South American beer costing £9 for some reason. By the time they shell out a fortune for a cab, they should just be tired, sober and irritable. It’s the mark of a good night out.

Only play shit music 

Music needs to unpleasantly loud, as explained, but it should also be total shit. Mainstream rap like 50 Cent soon becomes annoying. Or just make it bafflingly random – a bit of Coldplay oddly jumbled up with Salt-N-Pepa and Starship’s We Built This City is an excellent selection. Best of all, hire a wanker DJ who stands in the corner pompously spinning obscure white labels as if he’s performing brain surgery.

Extremely bad toilets

Toilets hidden in a labyrinth of stairs and corridors are good, along with the old classics of piss everywhere and a foul stench. However you can inflict actual physical pain on customers by simply not having enough. The resulting queue of agonised drinkers is like having your own personal version of the Japanese game show Endurance.