So, today has been, lets say, an interesting day. It started off so well (name that tune) in a blue sky, sun shining, sit and talk to God in bed, sit on the back step and eat breakfast in the sunshine kind of day. I trundled up to Gatwick in my car, abandoned it in the car park with instructions to play nicely with the other cars and headed up to London on the train. (there was a good reason for the crazy mad parking in Gatwick but it’s too long to bore you with right now). London in the sunshine is pretty, the walk up to Covent Garden from waterloo full of panoramic views over the city and interesting back streets. An idyllic day, especially given the fine company I was heading towards, the aforementioned Sarah and Anna, my Relay buddies from back in the day, people who know me inside out and still love me.
We met, hugged and went off to Cafe Nero, upon which my day started taking a slightly annoying turn for the worse. I sat, I drank tea, I put my bag on the floor, I chatted, I looked down and was surprised to see not the bag but the floor. Ah. Yes, someone had nicked my bag. Large bloomers. In fact, if you have time, several large bloomers. So frustrating, and an event which left me feeling slightly stupid for not having hugged my bag close to my chest for the duration of our coffee time. Cards have been cancelled and a new shiny phone is on it’s way to me at somepoint next week, I haven’t lost all that much apart from a diary and lots of handy business cards in my wallet, a wallet which had about 50p in it. (poor criminal not much to steal there..) I’m still alive and well and, apart from a slight weird feeling of emptiness and a desire to look at a non existent phone, I’m OK.
There are several things to note from today.
1. If you ever are in a situation where your bag gets nicked, make sure you are with Anna and Sarah, I can’t think of two better people to be with in such circumstances. Anna whirled into efficient ‘journalist talking to police’ mode and provided many good hugs, Sarah was on hand with her mobile and card canceling details. They both came to the police station with me and were generally lovely.
2. Sarah deserves a special mention for her ridiculous generosity and grace (which reminded me LOTS of Gods ridiculous grace and generosity). She took me out shopping, bought me a new bag, notebook, replacement novel and wallet. She put money in my pocket and took me back to hers, she then drove me to my parents house in Guildford (in her uber nice Honda S2000) and found time to encourage me, know me well and make me feel loved. Wow. My reaction to grace in everyday life is similar to how I react to God, reluctant at first but then increasingly gobsmacked and grateful for such good friends.
3. When you have no bag to carry, no money on you and no phone, you feel light and slightly like you’ve escaped from prison or a mental institute. I’ve realised how much my brain clicks in every few minutes telling me to look at my phone or bag, without them actually being there it got a bit confused.
4. My parents are also lovely. I got to hug my Mum lots and then Dad drove me home to get car keys and then up to Gatwick to pick up my car, and then paid for me to get out of Gatwick. Again the feeling of being let out of prison. I had loads of quality chats with Dad in the car and am grateful for that time.
5. Despite having my bag nicked at the beginning of the day I’ve experienced a ridiculous amount of giving and generosity today leaving me with the suspicion that, somewhat perversely, I may have gained more than I’ve lost today.