The Lost Generation – time is not on our side – we’d love to hear your thoughts

So there I was 10 years ago, finally taking early release from my successful career at the young age of 55 and some money in my pocket. Time to do what I had always promised myself, go somewhere warm in the winters: this I have done for the last 10 years and then Covid-19 struck.

So now this fit and pretty healthy 66-year-old man has spent the last 12 months staring at 4 walls with no bubble and very little human contact.

My situation is not at all unique. I regard ‘Golf del Sur’ in Spain as my second home, having made many friends there. So this isn’t about group holidays – although this issue will also affect groups (I suspect?). Now Covid-19 has affected the whole world, but it is more critical for our age group as we don’t have the years ahead of us to wait for the crisis to end. We seem to be a forgotten generation when this particular item is never mentioned on the news. It’s not just holiday and trips but life in general: if I was even 10 years younger I would be happy to wait.

So now, because of Covid-19, our lives have changed and even with our jabs, there are other issues like quarantine in the UK and abroad/testing/wearing masks/social distancing, I could go on, but you get the picture. We must all be thinking about risk factors and making individual decisions, but I go back to the ‘crux’ of this article and that is that we don’t have time on our side. Therefore, jointly we have a voice, and it needs to be heard. I hope this article starts to stimulate some kind of campaign.

We have to ask ourselves this, how many of us went away in the winter to keep on top of our mental health? Or to put it another way, did we realise how much our overseas breaks were helping our mental health without us even realising it, because I am one of those for sure. There are many in our age group that haven’t been able to ‘bubble’ for a variety of reasons, which has meant a year out of our lives, so it’s quite frustrating when someone younger says we have to be patient – we have already lost one year staring at four walls.

So I ask ‘do we want our voices heard’ or are we just the generation that doesn’t matter? For me, the silver traveller membership is the right place to start. Your views are welcomed, so I can see how to take this forward.

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Brian Charlesworth

Silver traveller & winter sun aficionado

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