I don’t mind if I do

adventure backlit dawn dusk

I knackered, I’m frazzled, I’m skint but I’m happy and blessed. Basically, I’ve been out out for months, every weekend and every day off, I have plans. Some of my excursions have been fancy, most of them have not. I’ve used deals, coupons and rescheduled trips to max out my diary. My house is a wreck and the ironing pile is voluptuous, but the lesson we were all taught in 2020 hasn’t been lost on me.

My friends, my collection of the world’s most wonderful people (in my opinion) as well as my family mean the world to me, and when we were locked in I missed them to the point of tummy ache. We had to shield for the first five months of Lockdown 1, and during that time I pined for the company of my peers. I watched all of Sex in the City and even though I still loved it, it made me miss my gaggle of ladies even more.

With the ever present threat of Covid still lurking I actively took the decision to go out to just about anything I was invited to. No more of the lazy me that would rather watch the telly because I can’t be bothered to wash my hair and find an outfit, no more loose dates that never happen. No. The new me is up for seeing as many of my friends and their lovely faces as is humanly possible.

“Do you want to drive for an hour to meet me in the forest to walk our dogs?” old me would have laughed and palmed that right off, new me has the wellies in the car before you can say, “bring some change in case there’s a tea hut”.

I went to Aquafit a few weeks ago because my friend asked me to go with her. I didn’t fancy it at all, I’m far more land based, but as tempting as a big fat no thanks sounded, I forced myself to go. Aside from the horror of dusting off and putting on my swimming cozie, it was great. I really enjoyed every one of the 45 minutes bobbing about with dumbbells made of floats, that are really hard to keep under the water, giggling and enjoying myself far more than I would have imagined. We were done and slurping on coffees in the cafe, catching up on all things life while feeling virtuous and chlorine fresh.

This is not me, it’s from the www but these are the floaty dumbbell thingies

This coming weekend we are driving my parents to the coast to walk our dog and eat chips, I don’t even like chips (see previous post Spud-you-no-like) but I do like the sea, I do like a winter beach, and I do like a family day out. My folks haven’t been to the seaside for several years and they miss it. My Mum mentioned that she would like to go to the coast soon, and just like the genie in the lamp, that wish has been granted. It’s not even a big wish, it’s an any-dayer, so the kids will miss a sporting fixture but my 86 year old dad will enjoy Aldeburgh with a bag of chips, our dog, us and the kids. It’ll not be fancy, but it’ll be sensational come rain or shine (she says checking the weather every day and praying for sunshine).

“You’re out more than Judith-blooming-Chalmers”.
“Yes, yes I am”.

I’ve joined a new exercise group and another member I don’t yet know kindly put out an open invitation to sample the joys of canoeing. Guess who’s going canoeing in March? And even though the new me is game for an outing, the old me is still there and I can categorically tell you that I won’t be capsizing and I’ll run on the water if I see a rat.

Re-reading this post I’m now wondering if I’m having my version of a mid-life crisis – no red sports car or boob job, just a renewed zest for life. To be honest, even if I am having a mid-life crisis I’m extremely happy that I get to have it with my nearest and dearest, that I can’t get enough of them, that I’m like a case of herpes you can’t quite shake off and that I have the polar opposite of agoraphobia*

•during our shielding months I did get in a muddle about germs in the outside world and couldn’t ever believe that I would relax out in the wild ever again.

So where are we off to next? Just let me sell a kidney to fund it and I’ll be there.

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