I glared angrily at the cows from the window of the coach.
“Why are you sitting down?”
How uncouth of these lazy bovines to quit chewing grass just so I could know that it was going to rain.
“Stand up, it’s August!”
I grabbed my summer cardigan and hastily draped it over my shoulders. It was like putting on lace in the Arctic. Having rained in England since June, it seemed like January had jumped into the middle of the calendar.
As I thought about the Cornish beach up ahead and how we would be soon wading into the sea fully-clothed, I grew more annoyed.
sitting on a promenade on top a cold bench was not my idea of fun. Having a suitcase full of sweaters was not delightful either, especially when they are fighting for space amongst the tee-shirts and sandals – “Just in-case the sun comes out.”
I’m going to be honest with you: having not been away on holiday for the last 6 years has made me grateful for just being away with the family. But I still felt cheated.
We kept telling ourselves how lucky we were to not have to get up at the crack of dawn to travel to an airport. And how great it was to not have to contend with a minimum 3-hour wait after check-in. And what a relief it is that we don’t have to deal with flight delays, and no excruciating eardrums as we descend towards the runway. Most of all, no laborious waiting in a baggage-claim area, staring at an empty conveyor belt dreading that your case will be the one that is lost or broken into pieces.
“What about mosquitoes?”
“And getting sunstroke?”
“And food poisoning from the deli!”
Aha, the chippie in Newquay would never serve up bacteria-laden haddock.
So we consoled ourselves into the delusion that is was better to go on vacation in the U.K. rather than trudge abroad to the delights of guaranteed sunshine.
I needed more solid pacification.
“Dear God, please help me to put things into perspective. I want to be grateful for what you have given me.”
- I have limbs that work, so I can stroll down the road holding my husband’s hand at proper height. There’s no awkward gait that causes me pain and my heart’s working well enough that we don’t need to turn around and go back to the hotel after 10 minutes.
- My husband is alive and well, not dead or in an Oncology ward being dri-fed saline and enduring vomiting-inducing chemotherapy.
- He has a job to go back to. the same job that paid for this holiday.
- My eyes work well so I can see the beautiful sea and my daughter’s contorted face as her feet make contact with -3 degree water.
- I can hear seagulls overhead and the splashing og waves as the wind picks up.
- We have a tasty meal waiting for us in the evening – one that’s not going to render us poorly owing to gluten, peanuts, oranges or lactose. So many people suffer from food allergies and get caught out when the restaurant fails to remember their special requirements.
- We will have a clean, warm private bed to sleep in later.
- all out freezing fun was caught on camera for us to look back on fondly in years to come. “Why was I wearing a fur coat mummy?”
No-one knows what the future holds. One of us could die, be injured or become unwell. We could lose our jobs, home, possessions and every material thing that is dear to us.
This may have been our last holiday together or we may have similar chilly ones in the future.
But whether we get to go abroad or not, bask in the blazing sun or not, splash in a warm pool or not, be given more fun times together or never again, one thing I know: God’s love for me doesn’t change. His plans to bless my life are not lies. He is fully willing and able to do all he has promised.
It doesn’t depend on his mood and thankfully, it doesn’t depend on British weather.