Today is Monday. Traditionally the worst day of the week as it is the furthest from the weekend, especially for those who work 9-5 during the week. But now that my working life is as different now as it could have been from 10 years ago, Mondays are actually more like my Wednesdays now because they are the midpoint between my “weekends” of Thursday/Friday where my ministry days usually quieten off. I don’t dread Mondays any more like I used to do, and I actually quite enjoy them now.
It’s Day 3 of the Olympics. And what a “different” Olympics it is too! No crowds to inspire and cheer on the competitors, it’s a year later than planned, and the BBC seem to have lost the plot altogether. I think we have become used to being spoiled with wall-to-wall coverage in recent years (thinking of Rio and London in particular), and I am usually spoiled for choice about what to watch. But this year, the BBC seem to have drawn some sort of barrel-scraping short straw and are showing just a few highlights (with lots and lots of talking heads) instead of full sessions of actual sport. I usually like to watch the gymnastics, diving, cycling and swimming, but because the BBC is the poor relation to Discovery+ and Eurosport this year, I can’t see the stuff I like to watch. It’s not as if I sit there for 18 hours a day watching the telly or anything, but it’s nice to have it on in the background as I work. However, the poor effort that the BBC is churning out this year is not even worth that. The constant talking is driving me crackers, and the constantly panning and moving camerawork in the studio gives me seasickness. So it’s a no from me BBC, sorry.
Sticking with the Olympics, I’ve been struck by two teams in particular for their sheer grit and determination to compete at all; the ROC (the Russian Olympic Committee) and the Refugee Team. The Russian team is competing under strict rules to prove that they are not part of the widespread doping that the country of Russia is accused of for their athletes, gymnasts and swimmers etc. They have had to sacrifice a lot in order to compete, which in itself is inspiring, but that they are doing so and thriving in their dislocation is a sign of hope to all who find themselves outside their usual boundaries. Which brings me to the other team, the Refugee Team. These people are competing together under the same flag because they cannot compete for their “home” country. There are so many reasons why that is not possible, and they have had to battle so many trials and tribulations just to survive, let alone compete. But like the Russians, they are not simply surviving exile but are thriving in it too.
And finally, we are getting ready to go camping next week. Kevin has been fettling the caravan – and trust me, by “fettling” I actually mean “rebuilding”… The biggest job (apart from cleaning the exterior of its 2 year’s worth of green stuff) was to repair the floor. He actually had to replace a couple of sections because it was becoming very mushroomy, and he had to do a job that involved inserting some sort of resin/glue/sealant/gloop into the floor where the laminated layers had separated. He has put down some new carpet tiles, so not only is the floor now solid all over again, but it smells nice and fresh as well. We’ve washed the sleeping bags, weighed up what crockery and cooking stuff we need, and have emptied about 12 years worth of “stuff” that we have accumulated during the holidays we’ve had with the kids in the van. As there will be just two in our van (and mum and dad in theirs), we don’t need all the plates and bowls etc that we have been carrying round with us all these years. We usually have both kids with us, plus an assortment of friends, boyfriends, cousins, nieces and nephews, but as there’s just us four this year, we don’t need it all. I don’t know whether to be sad or relieved…. or both?? Our caravan is little more than a shed on wheels, but we have had some super times in it over the years, and next week, I’m looking forward to spending some quiet time in it drinking tea and doing the crossword in the rain. Bliss!!
I hope you’ve had a magnificent Monday.
Grace and peace,