Friday afternoon, I was extra excited to meet Mr. Man for lunch because he had a surprise for me. Flowers? Something he saw that he knew I would like? Concert tickets? I love surprises and couldn’t wait to see what he had up his sleeve.
As I walked up to the restaurant, I saw him sitting in the lobby with a girl who looked very similar to a friend of mine, Wendy, who’s living in Australia. The closer I got, the more the girl looked like Wendy. A few steps closer and – holy crap – it was Wendy!
I knew her year-long stint of working and traveling was coming to an end soon, but I had no idea she would be back in the country this soon! Apparently, Mr. Man and Wendy had this planned since January! I was amazed Mr. Man was able to keep it a secret for so long.
She bought us a large bottle of authentic Bundaberg Australian rum and a genuine kangaroo scrotum bottle opener. Both presents were so classic, I knew they had to be put to use Friday night in celebration of Wendy’s return to the United States and her conquests across the continent of Australia. The occasion was special enough that it warranted breaking my Lent sacrifice.
So, we opened the rum, drank numerous rum and cokes, and listened to Wendy’s adventures into the wee hours of Saturday morning.
Yes, I had the willpower and I could have abstained from drinking, but Wendy’s visit was such a wonderful surprise that I wanted to celebrate properly.
Having plans is important; it helps you keep your priorities in line and your attention focused. However, it’s just as important to be flexible and leave room for the unexpected. Simon Sinek’s latest post, “Planning Is Everything. The Plan Is Nothing,” does an excellent job addressing this very same topic.
If you don’t leave room for the surprises in life, you may miss priceless opportunities. Besides, it’s the deviations to the plan that are usually the most memorable.
I know I’m glad I seized the opportunity to celebrate with a great friend, and I’d make the same decision if I had the chance to do it again. Besides, after Wendy leaves and heads to her parents’ in North Carolina, I’ll hop back on my Lent wagon. Just because I took a detour doesn’t mean I won’t get back on track.
So I toast to you my friends: May your journeys to achieving your goals be filled with detours.
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