Have you ever had one of those days that just DID NOT go the way you wanted it to?
One week ago I found myself sat in Edinburgh Airport at 6:30am - 400 miles from home. Overnight there had been enough snowfall in England to send the country into a frenzy.
**N.B. When you live in the UK - the weatherman tells you there will be snow - and of course, you don't believe him. Like every other year - we were still completely and utterly unprepared when it came.
Nevertheless - I'd been counting down the days until I could see some of the white stuff falling from the sky and it just so happened that this particular weekend I was away shooting a wedding in Scotland. It was okay though, because according to my perfect plan - it was all going to go off without a hitch, and I was going to make it home in time to roll around in the snow.
As I got into bed late on Saturday night, my husband text me saying something along the lines of 'Love you, miss you' and my only response was 'BUT HAS IT SNOWED YET?' (real talk).
Fast forward to Sunday....
At first, our flight was only delayed. Minutes slooooowly turned into hours as we repeatedly checked back to the board displaying 'More information at 8:00am'. Then it was '8:30am'. Then '9:00am'. The clock was taking its sweet ass time.
8:59 turned to 9:00am and there it was - CANCELLED. The 9 letters no one was hoping for - apart from me.
Wait, what? Yep - you read it right and you should know something:
My name is Jess - and I literally LIVE for this stuff.
In the time that we'd been twiddling our thumbs waiting for info... Joel and I had concocted approximately 37 other POA's - and ALL we needed to justify any one of them were those 9 letters.
AND THERE THEY WERE.
It was like the plot of every American Christmas movie - and it was happening to us. Queues upon queues of frustrated passengers - exhaling very loudly (why do we do that!?) - waiting to be told what the airline was going to do to rectify the situation.
Nah mate. Not us. Life is too short to wait around for someone else to sort it out.
Joel and I gave each other the 'look' - we'd been waiting 7 years for this snow and there was no chance in hell that we were going to miss it. NOT ONE.
Within 15 minutes, (after talking ourselves down from a spontaneous trip to Iceland), we had hired a 4x4 (without my license) and were driving out of that airport practically screaming the lyrics of 'Are You Ready For It?' and an 8 hour drive home in the snow ensued.
It's on days like this one where I'm reminded of the person that I've always wanted to be - a girl who finds adventure in everything. A Robin Williams in 'Dead Poets Society' kinda gal.
And here's the cool thing - I get to choose.
Despite your dispositions or defaults, you can be the guy who responds in anger and frustration, or you can choose to be the guy who responds with grace and understanding. You can be the girl whose plans have been ruined, or the girl who sees the adventure amidst the inconvenience.
The truth is, I had every right to be frustrated. I'd been shooting a wedding until midnight the night before, and I'd been at the airport since 6 am. All my friends were waking up to snow, posting videos on instagram building snowmen, and ALL I'd been waiting for was 400 miles away from me. In fact there were 1742 things I'd rather be doing than this. But, when I found myself faced with the 'unexpected' - my choice - was not to see myself as the victim. Instead, I was the lucky one - the one who wasn't dealt the predictable option that day.
Because of that decision, Joel and I still got home safely and had ALL the fun while we did it. We weren't stood in a queue bitching about the airline. As a matter of fact, we weren't missing out at all - instead we got to live the best version of our day that day. We drove through what looked like ACTUAL Narnia, saw snow-laden trees in the far off distance, emergency stopped the car to run through fields of white on white, and felt that first crunch of fresh snow under our boots. You know, even if just for a moment -everything was worth it. Regardless of that 5 am alarm, the hours upon hours waiting around in the airport, the extra car rental bill and having my own car stranded in Birmingham - we chose the adventure and it was completely worth every ounce of 'inconvenience'.
If I could, I'd absolutely choose THAT every day.
Don't tell me how, but it's Christmas in less than a week (Yeah... seriously) and of all the times of year - this is a season where things don't always go the way we imagined they would.
"I can't control what happens to me, but I can control who I am when it happens."
When the turkey tastes like a sponge, and my family are being lunatics - I'll be choosing to count myself as the lucky one - the girl with her family close, and her belly full - because, for all my trying, I can't control what happens to me, but I can control who I am when it happens.
The adventure awaits if you're prepared to choose it - it's in the oven as you attempt to cook your first Christmas Dinner, it's on the sofa with your unpredictable nan, and it's a reaction to a terrible gift wrapped up under the tree. WHAT A WEIRD AND WONDERFUL LIFE and I for one am hell-bent on savouring every second.
And what about you?
MERRY CHRISTMAS YA FILTHY ANIMALS 🎄