Last week, it was officially okay to go on holiday to Spain. This week, as holidaymakers return from Spanish resorts, all sun-bronzed and sandy, they'll be sent straight into self-isolation, with no sick pay.
Meanwhile, if people cancel a planned trip to Spain, they risk losing the entire cost of their holiday, since many travel insurers won't cover the expense.
Why? Because cases of coronavirus have begun to rise in certain parts of Spain, causing the UK government - and our own little rickety parliament on the hill - to slap a sudden, panicked quarantine order on the whole country, including the Canary and Balearic islands, even though these popular holiday destinations have seen no rise at all in Covid cases, and disease levels remain low.
In vain did Spanish ministers point out that Spain was safe for Spaniards and for tourists; that the outbreaks, mostly restricted to a few specific regions, were to be expected following the lifting of lockdown, and were "perfectly controlled".
In vain did they protest that the Canary and Balearic islands actually had a lower infection rate than Britain, and that in the majority of the country, the cumulative incidence of the virus is lower than both the European average and the UK average.
No use. Down came the portcullis on Fortress Britain with an ominous clang - also sounding the imminent death-knell for the airline and foreign tourism industries, not to mention our individual freedoms to live and travel as we wish.
Now anyone who goes on holiday abroad, after what has been a dreadful, draining, disorienting few months, is routinely shamed as selfish and irresponsible. Caring only for their own heedless pleasures while putting untold thousands at risk of their lives.
Is a jug of sangria at a beachfront bar in Benidorm worth killing your grandmother for? That's the general tenor of the morally outraged response, mostly from smug middle-class lockdown zealots who are virtuously "staycationing" somewhere wet and cold, nearer home, and are perhaps feeling a little jealous.
What such doom-mongers forget, however, is that the reason that travel is beginning to become possible again is because the incidence of Covid across Europe has dropped substantially.
Yes, authorities in countries across the continent are imposing localised lockdowns and curfews, where Covid has raised its ugly head again, but so far these clusters have not coalesced into a dreaded "second wave" of widespread death and destruction.
Crucially, while cases have risen in specific parts of Spain, including around Barcelona, Spain has recorded only 26 deaths in the past fortnight. This is a reminder that even if you are unlucky enough to catch Covid, whether abroad or at home, the risk of dying from it is low, unless you're elderly, frail or already unwell with an underlying health condition.
Point any of these scientifically verifiable facts out, however, and you'll be publicly accused - as I was, on air, this week - of being a Donald Trump figure. In other words, a confused, dangerously deluded Right-wing megalomaniac who thinks injecting bleach could be a cure for coronavirus. (Further verifiable fact: it isn't).
Many on the Left now seem to regard any criticism of the severity of Tory-imposed coronavirus restrictions, the long-term economic impact of which will hit the poorest hardest, and drastically widen inequality, as evidence of loopy Trumpian fanaticism. In the same way, "liberals" are now among the most illiberal people on the planet. The world really has turned upside down. Is it any wonder we need a holiday?
Hard-working people should not be shamed and ritually demeaned for wanting a few well-earned days in the sun.
Of course, caution is required, whether at home or abroad. Public health measures, especially social distancing, should continue to be observed as far as possible.
In the end, the decision whether to travel or not belongs to the individual. Each of us must weigh up our own acceptable level of risk - which includes the risk that the government might suddenly slap our chosen holiday destination on a quarantine list. Those whose age or health puts them in increased danger if they develop Covid will make their own choices.
Personally, I can't wait to begin travelling again. The only thing stopping me is that the places I love in Europe are still burdened by coronavirus restrictions. When these places return to something resembling their familiar, free and wonderful selves, I'll be straight back.
In the absence of a vaccine, we are going to have to learn to exist alongside this virus. We cannot hide from it forever.
Do we embrace fear, or hope? Only you can decide.