I KNOW you may find this hard to believe but I do actually have a day job. Yes, someone is prepared to pay me hard cash for my labours.

And yes, I also get annual leave. As I write this, I am preparing to depart these shores for the delights of the land of Sangria, San Miguel and endless sunny days.

Yes, I’m off to sunny Spain for two weeks by the sea. And frankly, I can’t wait. (Don’t worry readers, I will ensure you don’t miss a week or two of my musings, it’s all in hand.) To be honest, this jetting off to places is still a bit of a novelty for me. For years and years, my wife wouldn’t fly. It was only a couple of years ago we persuaded her to get on a plane again. Now, we can hardly stop her.

I still enjoy the whole experience. I love airports and planes, I avidly watch the safety demonstrations by the cabin crew each and every time and I make sure my tray table is stowed and my seat is in the upright position when we are coming in to land.

And here’s a confession you may find a bit shocking – I like low cost airlines. EasyJet is my favourite but I also have a soft spot for Ryanair. I like their lack of pretence. They are in the business of shipping you across Europe without fuss or frills and don’t try to pretend they are doing anything else.

Yes, I know that travelling with low cost airlines is a bit like, as one comedian once described it, being in a flying council estate but hey, you get what you pay for.

As part of my day job involves receiving unsolicited emails from just about anyone, and with my holidays approaching ever nearer, my attention was drawn to one message from a travel company which listed the top 10 travelling pet hates.

The author of the list admitted he was maybe a little guilty of being something of a snob but one or two did chime with me.

Top of the list is communal over-reaction when the plane lands. I could barely believe it the first time it happened to me.

Yes, the flight had been a little bumpy, nothing really out of the ordinary.

I know some people are nervous fliers but that is no excuse for a spontaneous round of applause. I don’t get it, I really don’t. It’s just embarrassing.

Strangely enough, it’s only ever happened to me on flights out of Liverpool. I wonder if that’s a coincidence?

Apparently, the phenomenon of spontaneous ‘relief’ applause isn’t confined to the British. It appears the Italians and Americans are particularly prone to it as well. No surprise there.

Then, of course, you finally arrive. The sort of holidays I take usually involve hire cars and that could be the subject of one of my missives all of its own.

It’s a long time since I stayed in a holiday hotel but without wishing to lapse into stereotypes here, the whole towel-on-sunlounger rigmarole, replaying England v Germany encounters through the ages, just makes me smile.

What doesn’t make me smile, however, are the holiday reps. I quite like the idea of having someone on hand to help if I hit a real problem while I’m abroad but I hate the forced bonhomie that seems to be the stock in trade of the reps I have come across.

Their reason for existence, in my opinion, should be a customer service rep.

They should be seen but not heard.

They should be on hand to smooth troubled paths. They should solve problems.

But what do you get in reality? An over-enthusiastic salesman – or woman – who is intent on bumping up their bonus by getting you to take a trip to the leather factory/pearl factory/animal sanctuary.

I will make a couple of exceptions.

I owe a debt of gratitude to the reps who persuaded me that a trip to the gin factory in Menorca would be enjoyable and that the sherry house tour in Jerez was a good idea.

I’m sure you can see a theme developing here although my recollections of both those tours are a little hazy.