Late evening, on my flight back to Stanstead, I was thinking this is how it should be; Irish registered Boeing aircraft, dispatched by a German, based at a UK airport with a Spanish and Italian crew working to European standards. Contrast this flight with the days when going from London to Cologne cost around £500 with a traditional flag carrier, if you could get a seat. Flying in Europe has gone from the preserve of an elite in the 1970s to an everyday experience available to everyone. I’d say the average age of the passengers on my flight was not much more than 30. Despite this reality there are those who have the numskull audacity to say that; “Europe has never done anything”. The blinkers that need to be worn to come to that point of view are thick, dark and dank. To top all this, these liberalising achievements were not done by accident but by the UK being one of the leading advocates for change in Europe. Thus making the depressing; “they never listen to us” mantra as big a lie as you will likely hear during the run up to the referendum on EU membership.
One of the most boring parts of travelling is standing and waiting. Yes, the different approaches to queuing will never be harmonised. There I was at a minimalist departure gate fishing for something of interest to hold my eye. Amongst the things I did see was a tiny EU flag and a sticker in both German and English. It was about Passenger Rights. There it is, yet another sign that Europe is at work improving the everyday experience available to everyone.
Surprisingly passport control at the Stanstead end of the journey was relatively simple. Not too many people around in the late evening. The electronic passport machine worked. I was quickly ahead of the crowd at getting to the bus station. National Express is the first sign that comes into sight. I wasn’t travelling with them but where had I seem their logo earlier in the day? It was on the German railways. National Express is an operator of trains in Cologne. Again, I was thinking this is how it should be in a working single market.
Frightening isn’t it. All of this good progress will be jeopardised in the event of Brexit. People would be crazy if they allow a noisy group of Europhobes to bully them into throwing away all the benefits of EU membership.

Author: johnwvincent

Our man in Southern England

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