This always happens.
Organise a major international trip and the weeks leading up to it can resemble the effects of a violent storm.
Have you heard the saying about London buses? Because it’s been a bit like that lately. After a period of relative quiet, thirty bright red buses arrived at our house in a matter of minutes and dropped off a cargo of crazy at the front door.
In the build-up to our ‘grand tour’ of the UK and Europe, life has become a tad frenetic.
|The calm is coming. Photo credit: Flickr Creative Commons (Jonathan Brazil)|
For one thing, we’re only a few weeks away from moving house.
Not only are we preparing for our holiday abroad but we’re also packing up the house, disassembling, de-cluttering, selling online, giving away, storing, chucking out, loading up, and filling box after box with our treasured possessions.
It’s been tough to find any sort of routine or rhythm in amongst all this cardboard chaos. We cook less and eat out more often. We order food delivery online and we spend increasing amounts of time inside.
We’ve also had our fair share of sickness.
Our beautiful, bouncing baby boy has turned into a teething, tantrum-laden toddler with a sudden tendency to collect all manner of illness and, in turn, pass the different ailments on to us.
I used to consider myself healthy and fit, with a strong immune system and an uncanny ability to avoid the common cold or pesky flu. Then my son arrived and changed all that.
In the last month, we’ve experienced gastro, chest infections, ear ache and a hacking cough. My wife’s best friend is the bathroom while I hide in the garage downstairs, sucking in lungfuls of fresh air, eager to avoid our plague-ridden home.
Then the teething re-appears.
Molars, incisors, eye teeth and more. Less than two weeks before we enjoy the delights of a 14-hour plane ride with infant child on lap and his teeth have decided to appear all at once. We wake to tears, go to bed with tantrums, and supply a steady stream of teething gel through the cold, lonely nights. And while I have no doubt that his gums are red hot, our sanity hurriedly waves us goodbye.
Combined with a job change for my better half (au revoir to the boss from hell!), a rush of friends wanting to say their farewells, plus a writing business that is prospering much to my joy and delight, it’s fair to say say there’s a lot going on.
But the winds of change are blowing and I can already sense the calm on the horizon.
Knowing that any period of change is often chaotic and unsettling, and that serenity will come soon after, I’m happy to take the bad with the good and visualise those calmer days that will follow.
I can see the cool water lapping at the edges of the hotel swimming pool. I can hear the excited conversation of guests gathered on stools by the outdoor bar. I can smell the emirate’s northern coast, whose pungent ocean odours quickly remind me of home. I can almost taste the dry summer heat of the high-rise city with its imposing presence never far from my gaze.
I might only be dreaming but I can already feel the calm that follows this particular storm.
Because we’re almost there.