Blessings upon blessings we are travelling back to the UK over the next few weeks to see family and friends for the first time in many many years. But before we reach our snowy white Christmas we're having a sneaky few days in Thailand. An unbelievable and unexpected treat which we are soaking up with reckless abandon.
I don't know what it's like at your house but I'm telling you, the beautiful simplicity of an uninterrupted conversation with my husband is a rare treat, and we've had at least three since we arrived.
Three glorious uninterrupted conversations.
And I dare say it may happen a few more times before we leave. That's the beauty of being in the same place, both awake, neither stressed, while the kids are happily entertained by general happy holiday-ness. Hallelujah.
Also, it's been five days since I've cooked. Longer since I've done any washing. And every time I return after the cleaner has 'made up my room' I dance a little jig in the doorway before I enter. Thanking the hotel gods for the blessing of a clean room. It's like being a kid again. Leaving for school In the morning with your room a disaster zone, your floor covered in washing, half drunk cups of water at your bedside table. Then returning in the afternoon, post mothers touch to a thing of beauty, your room straightened into order with well practiced hands.
Anyway before I make you all thoroughly sick with talk of my cooking/cleaning fast, and my spousal conversations let me share with you this strange nawing anxiety I've been experiencing. It's taken me a while to work out where it's come from. But I'll try and explain without sounding like I've completely taken leave of my senses.
It's to do with my holiday wardrobe. We all do it, right? And probably with good reason. I'm sure pop psychology backs up our practice of donning our parallel universe wardrobe. All those bright colours and flirty cuts probably release endorphins of epic proportions to help get us into the holiday mood. I'm wearing mine right now. Fruity floral tropical prints. Bright colours jutted up against bright colours with great swathes of missing fabric revealing unprepared and awkwardly surprised skin.
But rather than experiencing a rush of endorphins I feel lost and uncomfortable. Without my linen dresses, my organic cotton jeans, and my slightly geeky a little edgy oversized 'this and that' I feel as though I can't breathe. Flitting about in flirty tropical onesies and attempting to relax as I suck in my bare tummy poolside is simply not fun or endorphin inducing. Frankly, it's stressing me out.
I didn't realise how awkward and strange I was feeling in my holiday wardrobe until today when I spotted this rather fabulous looking lady, with not a sarong or a fluro floral sheath thrown over her togs, but an oversized white and blue striped shirt with crisp collar and cuff and shaped hem that finished graciously at mid thigh.
How had she known to do such a thing! Not only was she looking effortlessly sassy poolside- she wouldn't be caught unprepared post flight home to a European winter with that 'I fell asleep in the sun' shade of red at her shoulders and ludicrously inappropriate tropical sundress. No, part way through said flight she could zip to the loo, shimmy on some dark skinny denim to really make that crisp striped shirt pop. Oooo la la, a piece of chunky hand knit at her neck and boom - she'd be ready for landing - not looking like the rest of us sunburnt knobs returning from our trip to Thailand.
I actually let out a sigh of approval as I watched her sashay past. And a lightbulb went on in my head. Yes, that's what I needed to restore equilibrium and quell my anxious tummy. I needed my actual wardrobe, not holiday Jodie wardrobe. I needed my oversized linen smock dress in ochre hues, my forest green linen trousers with the serious waistband and uncompromising pleats, oh goodness gracious me how I wished I had packed my geeky brogue sandals.
And then it dawned on me. I had packed something that would do the 'it's okay, you're still you, and you're the bee's bloody knees' trick. For the next decidedly colder stage of our journey I had packed my truly awesome Tonic & Cloth oversized white mens shirt. A Holi Boli masterpiece I had planned to wear in the U.K. -merino and denim under, jacket and mustard hand knitted cowl over. But 'O' joy of joys it would be perfect for Thailand. Thrown over togs, or worn at breakfast as I piled my bowl high with tropical fruit. I could be poolside appropriate, and yet still me. And I could do as I imagined that fabulous lady by the pool doing. Boarding the flight from Bangkok to London with a wisp of crisp white shirt - then achieving a Wonder Woman transformation before descent into snowy London. Now that's what I call a holiday wardrobe! And that's what I call style without compromise.