I surprised Mrs G last night with the announcement that I was going to take her to see the stage version of that Les Miseryables movie. She is very excited to see this for the 35th time (and I’m not kidding, she has seen it that many times…or maybe more). As well as being excited she was also a little sad because, in her words:
I never remember to do this kind of thing for you. (Or something along these lines…it was late).
She does though, it’s just the last time she made such a gesture we weren’t able to follow through on it. For Christmas she got me tickets to watch the cricket in Birmingham, it would have been my first time at an Ashes test but in the end I didn’t go. It was within reach, and I took it away.
The reason I was unable to take my seat was because of our summer vacation to New York. Contrary to most people’s opinion of the teaching profession, Mrs G had only a window of a few weeks where we could go and visit her family. Smack bang in the middle of that were two days where I would be sitting in the sun all day, drinking beer, and watching men throw their balls at each other.
The question then became “If I tell her I didn’t wan’t to go would it be throwing it back in her face” but the reason would be “so we can stay longer in New York”. If I had bought the tickets myself it wouldn’t have been an issue, but I found myself having to decide between cricket and my wife…and that is hard.
Despite the fact she felt disappointed that I wouldn’t be getting a face as red as the batsman’s willow we decided pass the tickets on and spend event more on another set of tickets. So it happened that one morning I was sitting eating a NY bagel (the ‘only’ kind) while watching 22 men in white run around a field for 7 hours.
Now I live in the world of hindsight it would have been great to have been there, the result was a massive victory for England. I could have said “I was there”, although only for one day because my ticket for Day 4 was not needed. Yet beforehand the result was not looking that positive. I made my decision based on the evidence I had and I still wouldn’t change it.
I could live in regret that the opportunity was taken from me (although by myself) or I could remember what happened because it was. The three weeks in America made up for a glimpse of an event that I would have been a mere spectator for. With all these lost chances there is no option to just include the experience without affecting the rest of you life.
I could have been at the cricket, or I could have taken my daughter to the zoo. Howzat.
In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Out of Reach.”
Write about the one X that got away — a person, an experience, a place you wanted to visit. How much would you change about your life to have it within reach again?
Thanks for the thought-provoking prompt, Luckyest!