I have a confession to make. I’m officially that house guest. You know … the kind that doesn’t call weeks in advance so that everybody can plan accordingly. The kind that calls and says–hey … I’m going to be in your neighborhood tomorrow night. Would you like to host me and my two children you’ve never met? And can we stay the night on our way back from Canada, but before we go to the tulip festival the next day? I realize that I haven’t seen you in months, and for years before that. And that I failed to make it to your wedding reception due to that ridiculous snow storm. But … well … here I am. What are you doing tomorrow night?
In my mind, I justify this rude behavior because I have an open-door policy at my own house. Uninvited guests make for an exciting and unplanned night-o-fun. Right? Well, I realize that everybody doesn’t feel that way. But, fortunately for me, I have wonderful and gracious friends. Oh, and also … they knew me in college, so the fact that I called before I showed up on their doorstep is a step in the right direction. No?
Well, my weekend journey included an unplanned stop in my former college town and a slumber party with my college girlfriend and her new husband. And an impromptu dinner party that included mac-n-cheese for my kids, and pear-tinis for me. Lucky for us, they even had a bin of LEGOs on hand, so my kids were self-sustained for hours on end. And, since the pear-tinis were prepared in pitcher-quantity, the grown ups were sustained for hours on end also.
That night, before I fell asleep, I Facebook-ed another friend and asked if she’d like to meet for coffee in the morning. And lo-and-behold, she was available. So, we met at the park while my kids played on the pirate ship. In sub-warm, 40-degree temps. But, we bundled up in our down vests, held on to our hot coffee cups to warm our frozen fingers, and caught up on each others’ lives. Good times.
My kids were we amazed by the beauty of the tulip fields, and the illusion of a little line of color in the distance that becomes a huge sea of flowers up close. I was amazed by the fact that I drove right past these farms for years while I was in college and never bothered to stop. This is the 25th anniversary of the tulip festival–which is practically in my back yard–and I have never once taken the time to visit these colorful fields. My kids decided that flowers are the earth’s paint … as if the planet is a huge canvas decorated by beautiful fields of color.
I like that image. It is so simple. And so creative at the same time.
This weekend, my lack of planning led us to a perfectly delightful weekend. Perhaps I should spend less time planning my exciting journeys and more time living unplanned adventures.