We went on a long-awaited holiday following closures and lockdowns. We all love Lanzarote. The sun and the sea for me, the breeze and the booze for Val, the snooker, the bikes and happy hour for Geoff and of course nice food for us all. He loves happy hour, our guy, he doesn't really have any great interest in drinking alcohol, but loves the odd ‘Sprintzer’ to celebrate. (I wonder if his athletics influenced that drink?) An inch of white wine and filled to the top with 7-up that's his tipple, Christmas and bonfire night!
Having stayed in the same place six times, we decided to try a new hotel this year. A new place is always a challenge that the ordinary family doesn’t encounter, but those of you who have people with learning differences in the family will know exactly what I mean.
Our young man gets quite anxious when he doesn't know where the location is. It takes a while to get the routine going. The reason we stayed six times at the previous hotel was, he knew where he was, the staff were really friendly and the entertainer took him under his wing and it was exceptionally clean with lots of facilities.
When lockdown happened, the entertainer John Mac went back to Scotland with his family. He no longer works at the hotel we were staying in which was very disappointing for our guy. So we decided we would try another place to see if we could broaden his horizon a bit and support him to accept a new situation.
Having to accommodate two gluten-free people is tough enough but one person who gets an idea in his head about how things should be and then when they are not it’s disappointing has been the tipping point between having a good holiday and a miserable one. The order goes in for lots of desires, but they are not always met, as you can imagine.
New hotel and surroundings sussed out, so we went out for dinner. While we were in a Chinese restaurant called - wait for it, Mr. Pasta, we got chatting with a young Irish couple. She said she was a pharmacist, and he was with the fire service. Both of us exchanged information on how different it all has been over the past few years.
Geoff was wearing his Ireland strip, we usually get him to wear that travelling as it's easier to spot him if he gets separated in a crowd at the airport. Another parent gave me that tip, as it is a good marker of additional need without making a big deal of it. When they asked him about his top, he told them he was in Abu Dhabi on the Ireland team and appreciated all the compliments from the pair of them!
They left before us as their flight was leaving at 8.00 a.m. the next morning, so they were going to be up early. We said goodbye and finished our meal.
When we went to pay our bill, we were told it had been paid already by that young couple and we didn’t even get a chance to thank them.
That's what I call a pure random act of kindness and a big surprise, a great start to our holiday. I believe it's now our turn to do that for someone else.
Gratitude is a practice we do as a family every day and it most definitely is a magnet for miracles.
If you have not tried the practice of gratitude, join us in our group The Nurture Niche and let the gratitude gurus show you how it's done!