Make a Great Day

I have a dear friend who is a giver, a healer, and a master trained chef…a lovely combination in a friend. After day one of the 39 mile breast cancer walk she nursed our completely disgusting feet. Bandaging up my missing left heel, in her deep and delicious Trinidadian accent, she said, Kat, you can do this, think of how good you will feel tomorrow when you are done. Did you try that in a Trinidadian accent…smooth right? So when Nicole…who never asks anything of anyone…asked me to sign up with her for the Tony Robbins some inspirational tagline here “free” unless you want to be a VIP event…I could not say no.

I have never really understood the appeal of this large headed screaming man.

After getting past the perky blonde asking me to “get pumped for Tony”, turning the volume wayyyyyyy down, ignoring how many times he told us his net worth, and his alluding that the virus wasn’t that bad (!)….I gotta give credit where credit is due…this guy gets it. He is a powerhouse of energy… positive…uplifiting…kind of annoying but there is no way to stop watching…energy. Stop looking back, make it happen, write your own story, negativity is not the way, if you think you can, you can. I am in swoon with his message.

I truly believe he has the recipe for success. Have an idea? Make it happen. If it fails, brush off and try again, and again, and again. Scrappy people succeed.

On a walk the other day I saw a wall covered in green plants growing out of the stone. It reminded me of a time when we made something happen. We wanted to show our kids that the world was a big place. We decided England would be a fun and approachable choice…but impossible in our economic situation…until I watched a morning tv segment on house swapping.

I set up my swap account, took super cute pictures of our house…so styled that my children did not recognize it was the house they lived in…and I waited for an online response. I was like a single woman of a certain age with retouched photos on a dating site. Miserable. Finally I got the nerve to reach out to a homeowner in London. What. An. Ass. He told me all about his spectacular home, his upper crust self, and picked and prodded over my not close enough to the city, low class house. With this exchange I became very aware that if I ever need to resort to finding a new partner through a dating site…I will grow old alone. I tossed uptight English dude and decided to just wait for someone to appreciate our little quirky home. And someone did.

We flew to England using miles (18 years of saving). England via Germany…32 hours of travel…for free. We stayed in a beautiful quirky little home in Brighton…for free. On hearing the plan my mom said when in England you MUST go to France. Well, that was impossible, until she gave us money for train fare and a night in Paris. Asking only that we please get ice cream on Ile Saint-Louis, in honor of my dad. Deal. By staying in a very loved (old and rundown) hotel, on a less than charming street, in a room with literally no floor space (we walked on beds), where Jacob could have easily rolled out the window while he slept…we squeezed another night out of the gift…budgeting perfection.

In England we saw castles, rocky beaches, torture devices, and museums. We visited Camden, emerging from the tube into a brawl between foot-high mohawk sporting punks. Olivia did chalk drawings with street artists, and we hiked white cliffs. We mastered the Underground, and drove around and around in roundabouts. The refrigerators and washing machines tiny, no ac, less waste, we lived as they did, and it was perfect. Our swap family were our English counterparts, he was tall and thin, she short and full, our kids had the same obscure toys and were reading the same book series, we had each left the same CD in our respective CD players. Swoon.

People told us we must have a least a week in Paris so we packed each day tight. A memorable one went like this…walked past Notre Dame to Sainte-Chapelle (to experience the glory of the most beautiful blue in the world), walked to the Louvre for “the best of” which is a lengthy task when with Greg, moved on to the Musee de l’Orangerie, crossed the Seine to experience the eclectic goodness of the Musee d’Orsay, then down to the Eiffel Tower. We were on the long line to climb to the top, almost 5pm, being entertained by a group of teenage Scottish Boy Scouts, when Jacob quietly asked… um, are we going to eat today? Parental neglect at its best. Off Greg went to get street food to be consumed on line while waiting for our Eiffel Tower views of the city at the golden hour. Finding the metros were closed, we walked and walked looking for a bus back to the Latin Quarter…coming across the most beautiful green building…our first…the walls made of plants. Spectacular and appreciated, even when beyond exhausted, a forever memory. We had…Made a Great Day.

As my very pumped and spirited friend Tony says, write the story you want to live…or something like that…maybe he does deserve his billions.

The wall of green that brought me back to Paris.

Published by Kat

A mom, a wife, a daughter, a friend, a graphic designer. I am flawed... but I try.

7 thoughts on “Make a Great Day

    1. What a wonderful, crazy trip! The best remark of the trip, Jacob saying in the very late afternoon, “um, are we eating today?”

      Liked by 1 person

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