SEEING RED: Why jet abroad for a break when everything we could wish for is on our doorstep?

The Beatles Statue in Liverpool - just one of many cities in Britain proving to be a hit with tourists from around the world.
The Beatles Statue in Liverpool - just one of many cities in Britain proving to be a hit with tourists from around the world.

As I’m writing this, the sun is shining and the birds are chirping.

Life is perfect and there’s very little hint of the fractured Britain we live in and the woes which beset not only this country but the world at large.

It’s amazing how blue skies and a bit of sunshine can shape how we feel on a day to day basis, isn’t it?

Me? I’m firmly in the warm and sunny camp when it comes to our weather.

When the sun shines and the temperatures climb, I’m one happy boy. In fact, is there any better country than good old Blighty when the sun shines?

Now I know the sun and warm weather isn’t for everyone - although sat on a wet and windy seafront at Skeggy is hardly my idea of fun in all honesty - but when the sun is out, Britain shines.

Of course, there some downsides to the nice weather - mainly the sights we see.

Monday saw the return of one of Britain’s finest exports - the milky torso.

And if it’s not pale-white flab on display, then there’s geek dads who don’t need much of an excuse to ditch their baggy 1990-style jeans for their equally untrendy shorts.

No, I’m not about to go all Little Englander Bregsit on you but I’ve realised in the last few weeks what a great country we live in.

Our countryside is simply stunning and is the envy of the world, while our major cities have seriously upped their game in recent years and can rival anything overseas.

In the past month I have been to Birmingham and Liverpool for the first time in an age.

Both are fantastic revitalised, cosmopolitan cities with much to offer.

The stereotypical image of both are dated and quite frankly borne out of ignorance.

Some football fans chant about the ‘Liverpool slums’ - and yes, the area does have areas of deprivation - but which city in the world doesn’t?

No, these past fews months have opened my eyes to what we do have in this country.

We are quick to knock our towns and cities and head off abroad but we really should appreciate what’s on our doorsteps more. It’s just a shame some politicians in Westminster are doing their damndest to make Britain a laughing stock.

-The weather last week was atrocious - which, unfortunately, coincided with yet another week off work for yours truly.

However, the persistent rain outside enabled me to take my seat in the armchair and do very little other than to feast my eyes on the plethora of football on TV.

And what a week it was too, with Liverpool and Spurs both securing Champions’ League final spots with stunning wins over Barcelona and Ajax respectively.

The action was utterly breathless and, for me, showed why the sport is rightly described as the beautiful game.

Yes, football has many faults but it can also bring much joy and happiness to not only fans, but to whole communities and beyond.

I’m glad I fell in love with football all those years ago - and for anyone who isn’t a fan, you really don’t know what you’re missing.