Wanted: holiday hang out that won't drive a single to drink
BEING single is great - no couple fights, no enormous loads of dishes or washing, no debates over who gets the TV control or the right side of the bed - until you want to go on holiday.
Years ago I travelled all over Europe and America solo. Not for long, of course.
I made friends along the way and, generally in every city, scored a date with a charming local keen to give me travel tips or show me the sights.
I've thrown the dice at the high rollers table in Las Vegas, been rowed down the canal in Venice and had dinner at Spagos in Los Angeles with a hotel maitre d'.
But now I'm over 40, the idea of going on holiday alone, or taking my chances on local encounters, is much less appealing.
I want someone I know isn't a psycho to share the sights with, or just sleep late in the comfy hotel bed, and I don't want to be hit on by sleazy married guys or desperate and dateless post-40s.
I'm thinking somewhere they don't offer free packages for children under 12, but also somewhere there aren't lots of honeymooners being romantic with each other.
Actually, I'm pretty sure resorts that don't fit either of these categories will also appeal to couples who have been together for a while and want to get away from hormonally revved up lovers and other people's kids.
I would also prefer somewhere that's not a singles resort packed with nubile 20-year-olds, unless you're talking about the guys, or ones that are advertised in cheesy kinds of ways.
I'm over 40 and single, not a television character off a Mills & Boon drama.
Statistically, a Google search reveals there are 24 million single men in China and that Shanghai is man central, with an increasing number of multinational corporations based here. You can even head to Peoples Square Marriage Market on a Saturday to meet a mate.
But it's a little far for a quick getaway.
Somewhere warm and close would be good.
Paris is nice in springtime but the last place you want to be if you are single and, again, a long plane ride.
Barcelona is packed with singles and Spanish men are pretty attractive but distance is also a problem.
So, if you're reading this, please send me some suggestions - any suggestions - for where mature singles can have a riotous time on holidays, not including staying home and watching reruns of The Big Bang Theory or The Block.
Make it somewhere not so family or couple orientated that singles must drink six margaritas a day just to deal with the depressiveness of it all.
Ideally there would be cable TV, midnight outdoor movies, samba or tango lessons, cute bar and restaurant staff who know how to be charming to lone diners and maybe even set you up with another single for dinner, dogs and bikes for hire, a spa and hair salon for extra pampering, and absolutely no mention of those statistics about terrorists and single women.