and in all honesty it really was
After all my doubts it turned out that we were in really pleasant company,
and had a good time.
I even got introduced to a book club by one of the party,
and have already zipped through an enjoyable read, and duly joined in
discussion about it with the "club".
Now I'm left with the question,
was this bowls trip all that different from all the others I've been on, or
was the difference that
I'd made the attempt to adjust my outlook to a more positive,
and grateful one?
Probably a bit of both, but which ever it was I'm truly grateful
as the break was just what we both needed.
I don't know if you can see it,
but the sea is just beyond the trees seen from our bedroom window in the photo above.
On our last afternoon of bright sun and cleaving cold,
the sea churned and creamed against the shingle as we walked beside it.
Then we took refuge from the cold with a good British pot of tea,
in a light-flooded room where we could continue to watch the tide
from the Inn on the Beach.
Since we've been back I've been painting an abstract
it draws on my fascination with the tangles of branches I love,
and colour and light.
Not sure it's fully resolved yet, but probably better to leave it and move on to something new.
Since we got back life has also thrown a few things at us to test my
determination to stay with the
and I've fallen down on it a few times too,
but all in all it I'm maintaining my sights on
the good, and lovely, and giving thanks for them.
There is a lovely blog which deals in depth with living fully in the dimension of gratitude,
and you can access it by clicking on
Looking around the world at present there is so much suffering and desperation.
It would be ungrateful indeed not to see how blessed I am,
and to celebrate the fact.
Surely the best foundation for our prayers is a
even while we still feel a keen anguish for those in need.
With the world shrinking in on us as the media brings the happening news
into our living rooms, and onto the screens of our mobile phones,
we all suffer from an overload of angst.
I don't know about where you are but here,
whether in the queue at the supermarket, or on the bus,
conversation with perfect strangers soon turns to the state of the country,
the state of the world.
Always with a sense of how wrong things have gone, and all too often with
a sense of impotence.
A sense of "What is to be done!?"
While this is dispiriting,
(and I use the word advisedly because our hearts and spirits are depleted
if we continually look, and see, in near despair),
perhaps it also our greatest pointer that within the human heart
there is always a longing for all that is better, best, and good.
And not just for ourselves either.
It is that impulse that has stirred the astonishing movement in the Middle East,
where ordinary people have laid their lives on the line for the hope of a better future,
without any longer caring whether they themselves will partake in that future.
Hubby is a constant source of inspiration,
(I have to be honest and say and irritation too some times!)
as he will have none of a defeatist or downbeat attitude.
On the other hand he isn't Panglossian either,
but his belief that there is always an alternative to the bad and the ugly,
and his willingness to work towards that is a constant challenge.
You can see why he irritates me can't you?
Still I thank God for him ( on my good days),
and wish I, and perhaps all of us were a bit more like him,
because as you know I have to work on it!
"Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God". Phil 4:6