Daily Archives: July 18, 2011

What You Did for Your Friend’s Summer Vacation

I think it takes an extraordinary amount of good will to wish someone else a happy vacation.

Think about it: Your friend, colleague or neighbour is about to go away for a holiday. They’ve arranged to temporarily leave the real world behind, along with all its woes and worries.

They’ll spend idle hours lying on the beach, or dining on a cruise ship, or cycling along a coastline. They’ll sleep in a four-star something or other and have daily maid and laundry service. They’ll enjoy some part of the planet that is breathtaking, that boasts perfect weather, that is culturally enriching. They’ll probably buy themselves fabulous outfits before they go and while they’re away, they won’t cook any of their own meals. Not a one.

And here you are, with nothing to look forward to for the next two weeks but your desk job, your dust bunnies, your roof repairs, your overdue utility bills. If there’s a heat wave, instead of taking a dip in the ocean you’ll likely defrost the freezer. At least it’s refreshing.

So what do you do when your friend closes her laptop, zips up her bag and picks up her tickets? You smile. And you tell her to have a fantastic time. You are stoic.

Of course you wish it was you, not her. You may make some halfhearted joke about stowing away in her suitcase. But in the end, you wish her well with all your heart.

Now, that’s a good deed.

Girl jumping into lake

Lisa is on vacation, small in scale but rich in relaxation. Wish her a good one. PHOTO BY ANNE DEGROOT