A Transitory Story

Shortly before departing for a stay in Ireland, I read online that thin women think differently from overweight women. Thin women don’t consider hunger a permanent condition, so they don’t eat every time they’re hungry. They figure, “If I don’t eat now, I’ll eat later.”

Overweight women, the article said, have a different reaction. When they’re hungry, they eat.

I thought of this often during my stay in County Galway. Not about food. About the weather. Nothing is less permanent than the weather in the west of Ireland.

I might wake up to a gloriously sunny day. Before I finished breakfast, it would pour down rain, clear off and cloud up again — or all these things in reverse order. If it wasn’t raining at midday, I’d gather my cap, water bottle, keys, camera and umbrella to go out for a walk. But before I could change into my sneakers, it would be raining again.

In Texas, we have a saying: “If you don’t like the weather, wait a minute; it’ll change.”

In Ireland, it’s “wait a second.”

So I’d wait, then set out, hoping to finish my walk or run my errands before another rain shower blew in from the Atlantic. I’d worry, “What if I get wet? What if I’m cold?”

I’ve been wet before. I’ve been cold. Those situations have never lasted too long. (After all, I live in Texas.)

Sure enough, in Ireland, I’d get wet, but seldom soaked. I’d be cold, but not excessively so. I’d remind myself: “It isn’t a permanent condition.”

Despite many delightful experiences, there were times I was lonely, homesick, tired of being on my own in another country.

I kept telling myself: “It isn’t a permanent condition.”

But then, in this mortal experience, nothing is.

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5 Responses to A Transitory Story

  1. Love this one Carol. It gives me another way to look at the way I do things. For too long I’ve let the “What ifs” keep me from doing too many things.

  2. chelo says:

    Yes, you’ve got it so right Carol. I think I’ll put this on my fridge. Even better, make it my mantra.

  3. three months is a long time… i’m jealous you got to visit ireland, although this post made me wonder why i want to go there so badly :) i’m glad you’re home again friend. i’ve missed you linking up to imperfect! blessings, e.

  4. Carol Nuckols says:

    Emily, Ireland really is a beautiful country with fascinating history and delightful people. I had some amazing experiences. It does rain a lot, especially in the west — that’s why it’s so green.

  5. leslie says:

    love this post, so much. love the warmth and humor… love that you were able to visit a place i dream of visiting someday. and love the conclusion here:

    “I kept telling myself: “It isn’t a permanent condition.”

    But then, in this mortal experience, nothing is.”

    so very true.

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