We have this thing going on.
When I say 'we', I mean we Brits, and when I say 'thing', I mean a ritual.
It's a holiday ritual.
It began with the advent of the cheap package holiday in the 1960's.
And over the years has caused any amount of trouble. It could well have caused a third world war with Germany had sensible people, such as I, not refused to play ball.
It goes like this ...
The Brits, in their sunny, summer corner of Spain, in an effort to safeguard their position by the hotel pool or breach, would slip from their rooms at ridiculous o'clock in the morning and lay their towel on the best positioned lounger available.
Disappointed Germans soon learned that to get the best spot they had to get up even earlier with their own towels and beat the Brits at their own game.
Often Germans would encounter Brits and Brits encountered Germans during this clandestine operation.
It very often came to blows!
Well, I've just been to Spain with my wife. In our hotel, the staff would pile and chain the loungers during the hours of darkness.
They were unchained at 6.30am every morning ... and within minutes three towel carriers would swarm around the pool, laying towels and claiming loungers.
It was always a sad sight ... like watching a list and lonely puppy ... to see the stragglers as they wandered around trying to find the last available spots.
Sadder still was the fact that the only people playing the towel game were the Brits!
I have to say that early mornings whilst on holiday are far, far better when you ... and by that, I mean me ... are filling your plate with a delicious fried breakfast!
I'm happy to let the towel loonies do their thing, as long as there are enough sausages and lashings of bacon, eggs and fried bread!
Besides, if I see a lounger I like, I have no qualms about putting someone else's towel in a dustbin and replacing it with my own!