Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go into such and such a town and spend a year there and trade and make a profit”–yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes. Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we will live and do this or that.”
James 4:13-15, emphasis mine
“If the Lord wills” is a great way to preface an announcement, especially if the thing being announced won’t be coming for another full year. A lot can happen between now and then, which is why I must be always careful to remember that God’s plans and timing may be different from ours. At the same time, I need to start planning for a very wonderful event a full year in advance.
No, I’m not getting married next September, and no, I don’t have grand plans to rearrange my sock drawer, or even publish my novel by then.
However, Lord willing, I’ll be an international traveler!
My grandparents usually go to England once a year. Sometimes they go to France or Italy (they’ll be in Milan next month, as a matter of fact) but England is their first love. And they have invited me and TJ to go with them next September.
As Anne of Green Gables would say, visiting England will “mark an epoch in my life.” (And like Anne, I’m sure that “the best of it all” will be “the coming home,” since this journey will likely last about two weeks–the longest I’ll have ever been away from home in my life!) I’ve always dreamed of going to England, ever since I was small. My fascination with the British Royal Family as a starry-eyed six year old was what started it all. My grandparents’ almost-annual visits and my own interest in All Things British fed my imagination up to the present day.
Now, if the Lord wills, I’ll be able to walk the streets of London, see Beatrix Potter’s beloved Lake District with my own eyes, stroll the grounds of Windsor Castle, and explore the quaint Cotswolds. I must, at all costs, have a few minutes at Tower Green where my beloved heroine, Queen Anne Boleyn, died with grace and dignity. TJ is delighted with the thought of visiting the giant Apple Store in London and using his photography skills everywhere we go.
And we’re both in awe of the possibility of seeing Les Miserables and The Phantom of the Opera LIVE.
I’m sorry, but the thought of seeing “One Day More” performed live is enough to make me “SQUEEE!” in a most undignified fashion–and I’m thinking I’d better bring a pack of tissue, because I’ll probably cry like a baby.
Another thing TJ and I would really, really like to do in London: get our picture taken right here at Earl’s Court Tube Station.
It would be simply wrong if we were in London using “the tube” and didn’t get a snapshot with this thing.
What? Why’s everyone looking at me funny?! There is enormous wibbly-wobby-timey-wimey cultural significance in a Time And Relative Dimension In Space–*cough* I mean, a police box!!!
Need I say more? We shall all be Time Lords!
But remember how I said this isn’t happening for another year, and yet we must plan and prepare? Haha, oh yes–there is much to do and, in a way, so little time. You might say, “Next September? That’s forever!” Well, not really, when you think about the fact that (Lord willing!) I’m going to have my hands full with baby goatsies next spring. That’ll mean half of 2013 will whiz by me, and it’ll be August again before I know it.
We had a chance to spend some time with our grandmother on Sunday afternoon, discussing the logistics with her. “How long does the flight take? What’s security like? How many outfits do you pack for fourteen days?” (The answer: about four or five. We get to do our laundry while we’re there.) “Walking shoes? How and when do we exchange our American dollars for English pounds? Will it be cold in September? Which one of you knows how to drive on the other side of the road?!”
Like she told us, “Half the fun is the anticipation.”
I’m very excited–thrilled–beside myself with anticipation every time I think about it. And while I’m being very careful to say, “If the Lord wills,” I can’t wait for the day when I take my seat on the first flight I’ve taken since I was two years old and say, triumphantly, “ALLONS-Y!”
It’s French for “Let’s go!”