Spontaneous. Just the word makes me nervous.

My husband works twelve to fourteen hour days, often six days a week, and rarely uses his annual leave.  Out of the blue on Monday, he announced he wasn’t going to work.

What? (I was too shocked to be more gracious in my speech)

He spent the morning downstairs recording (using garage band) with our daughters.  At 11am, he announced that a day at the beach would be good.

WHAT? (too shocked and incredulous to think of a new way of expressing my shock and incredulity!)

I am a plan-aholic. A hyper planner, if you will.  With four children, I consider intentions to perform an outing to the beach require two days notice in writing. Normally I would have protested, become mildly flustered, and generally expressed that the day would have been a lot better spent if I had been given notice that the man of the house had wild plans to ditch Algebra, Latin, Music practice, and (almost more importantly) laundry: Monday is washing day!  I could have re-scheduled my week, could have…blah, blah, blah….

But I am aiming to grow old with my husband. This time, just for something fresh and unusual, I held my tongue. (I could show you the bite marks, but that wouldn’t be lady like 😉 )

An hour later we were all packed with picnic supplies, baby stuff, togs, and such essential items.  En route to the beach, it occurred to me that we would be going past a particularly interesting area of state forest.  Without so much as blinking an eye, my husband agreed to the plan, and bush exploring it was.


Wallaby and Joey


After a couple of hours exploring the reserve, it was off to the beach. In the course of the day, we observed koalas, wallabies, kookaburras, grandmother’s cloak moths, soldier crabs, ibis, terns and sea gulls.  But by far the most important observation for me was that spontaneity is not as evil as I once thought it; that as a result of my husband’s off the cuff decision to head out for the day, we all had a glorious time.  I observed how generously my husband agreed to deviate from the original suggestion of heading directly to the beach, and contrasted it to what would have been my reaction if the plans had changed so suddenly (hint: it wouldn’t be pretty 😉 )

I have previously equated spontaneity with disorganization –  which is almost akin to grave moral depravity 😉  Would the day have turned out better if I had known of the plans sooner and had more time to prepare?  I can’t imagine it would have made the slightest difference.


Big sister introduces baby to the joys of scuttling, crunchy, soldier crabs.

Big sister introduces baby to the joys of scuttling, crunchy, soldier crabs.