TWIN white trails cutting true though a celeste sky. There were a few of us cricking our necks to follow the jet as it propelled itself into a far off speck.

An aeroplane overhead has become an arresting sight. There are just so few of them. Saturday's felt like a taunt - seawater to a thirsty, stranded sailor.

Ikea has erected an ad on a billboard near my flat that urges frugality. Buy plants, it suggests, and eschew travelling. I have some suggestions as to where it might get to.

At the end of 2019 I wrote about my carbon guilt at having taken 31 flights that year. There was a campaign around that time asking people to commit to a flight free 2020. Not a chance.

Well, turns out chance would be a fine thing.

In May last year, just over two short months into lockdown, I wrote again about how the travel restrictions of the early part of the year might provide a fine time to reconsider how we travel, why and to where.

All very pertinent and now, even more so. Now, after a year spent shuttling little further than Glasgow into North Lanarkshire and back - entirely in Scotland bar three hours spent revisiting the childhood holiday haunt of Berwick-upon-Tweed - I'm on the cusp of standing in Glasgow Airport's entrance hall and bellowing "Let me out of here".

Let me out. I have places I want to be. We all have non-essential items we desperately miss in lockdown. For some, it's gigs and theatre. Others, it's restaurants. For me, it's travel.

I have an extensive and passionately curated list of places I want to see while I have the chance and, if anything has been brought home more keenly in the past year, it's that life is short.

On the other hand, the other sharp message of this year is that life is precious and risks should not be taken.

And that conflict is at the heart of the debate over foreign travel. It's coming up on summer holiday time and people are desperate to get away.

It's understandable. We are exhausted. We have been ill. We have lost people without the chance to mourn in the usual ways. Even those who have had a relatively privileged time of it are fed up.

Holiday companies are struggling, the travel industry is hobbled, share prices in airlines and aviation businesses dropped earlier this week as the government warned people not to book summer holidays. It's an easy feat to empathise with people itching to book a sunshine break, with plenty of wellbeing and economic arguments to back that position up.

Yet the warning from public health experts is just as clear: not yet. There are concerns about new strains being brought into the country that might be more transmissible or that the vaccine does not protect as well against.

We are at a delicate stage in managing the pandemic and it's clear that we need to hold the line a little longer. How devastating it would be to relax restrictions now and risk another lockdown in the autumn or winter.

While it's absolutely understandable that holiday season is the focus of the current conversation about travel, a huge part of the discussion is missing.

Right now, I'm sipping a gunpowder imperial green tea I brought home from Zabar's in New York, picturing the hot, crammed subway ride from Times Square to Broadway to visit the famous deli.

I would give anything to have solid plans to cycle over Brooklyn Bridge or wind along a lane in Stone Town or see a giant tortoise on Isabela.

But more than that, more than a holiday, I want to visit friends and family overseas. Until very recently the world felt very small and conquerable. My loved ones are in Australia and New Zealand, which is all the way over there - but just a couple of flights.

In 10 years I've never missed an annual visit with a dear friend in Sweden. I want to see my close friend in Toronto. So, so many of us have family abroad and don't know when we'll be likely to see them again.

Technology is a balm, of sorts, but it's not nearly enough. I still think of Sydney, where I was born, as home and miss it dreadfully. I imagine making an absolute fool of myself on Dee Why beach at some indeterminate time, blubbering into the sand.

The Antipodes have taken a hard line in protecting their borders so God knows when that will happen - we not only have to be able to travel but also to be welcomed in.

Suddenly the world is quite vast again and impenetrable. We emigrate on the understanding that we can return at any moment.

A flight purchased, a bag packed and we're home again. Not now.

Yesterday Boris Johnson said vaccine passports may only be possible once all adults have been offered the jag. An update on the idea is due in April while a report looking at the moral and ethical considerations, as well as the practical aspects, is due in June.

There's been a lot of rattling around the issue of whether people booking foreign holidays are selfish. This is yet another issue where it's on the individual to weight up the evidence and make a decision.

While holidays are an option, people will book them and it's not selfish to do that. What's selfish is ignoring quarantine rules on return - and that's another issue that needs further discussion and tightened regulations.

I'm desperate to start ticking off my travel bucket list once again, though with carbon footprint concerns to the fore, travel is going to be carefully planned and rationed but I'm happy to wait until it's safe to do so.

For those who are missing out on meeting new babies, or who are unable to travel to see terminally ill relatives, or who want to take part in milestone events like weddings and funerals, these discussions focused on summer fun are deeply frustrating.

The talk needs to focus more on how we ensure, when foreign trips are allowed again, that this time the rules are properly enforced and people urged not to flout them, sending us backwards.

Summer sun talk is understandable. We all need a break.

We can have a break in the UK, though, explore our home turf. And that's not a staycation - a staycation is remaining at home and taking day trips. When did we become so spoiled we forgot that a week in Cornwall is a holiday?