Winter Solstice. Shopping Frenzy. Low dull skies. It’s jut a few days until Christmas and that glorious overconsumption that is gift-giving and meals with friends and family. I can’t wait.

My shopping’s long done and now that Hub has gone to the gym, it’s time to wrap his gifts. It’s always challenging to find him something useful and nice because he never wants anything. No hints during the year, either. He needed a new bag for his swim fins – the old one is held together with duct tape and looks very tacky. Thank goodness for Google. I located a full-service dive shop – Adventure Sports – just beside one of our favourite smokehouse restaurants, Big Bone BBQ on Eagle Street.

underwaterThe salesman – Jody – was very pleasant and managed to up sell me into gifting Hub with an Introduction to Scuba class at the end of December at a nearby pool. He asked if I’d be joining in and I had to admit that although I love snorkelling, I’d avoided scuba diving because of a mild case of claustrophobia. Having my mouth and nose covered, being only able to breathe through a tube attached to a couple of tanks actually makes me breathless. Probably a control issue. Or lack of trust. But I feel the same way about jumping out of an aircraft with a bag of folded up fabric and strings strapped to my back. Jody reminded me that we’d be in a salt water pool and if I encountered any problems, all I’d have to do is stand up. So I capitulated and bought a Learn to Dive lesson for myself.

Oh well. I started playing hockey on a team when I was 50. I did a 5km run the following year. I learned to downhill ski at 55. Dammit, I can learn to scuba dive. The other downside though, is that if we enjoy it enough to want to keep doing it, we’ll collect yet another set of expensive equipment (tanks, wetsuits, fins, masks, regulators, gloves, something to keep it all in, etc.) that will sit in the storage closet for half the year, unless we become scuba bums and travel the world looking for the next perfect reef. Then I’ll want a spear gun so that I can protect myself. Stop the madness! Let’s see how that lesson turns out. If nothing else, I’ll have a nice swim. I’d rather be on a beach, though. Doing nothing.

longboardwalkI’ve been contemplating stuff lately. And for some reason, I’m feeling gloriously grateful for my life, for Hub, for my family and friends, for my capacity to create stories from a turn of phrase, a smell or a song. Haven’t you had days like that? When your heart is full and everything seems golden? I don’t care to discover why. I’m prepared to accept that it just IS.

Be good to yourself, my friends. It’s okay to burst with joy. Show someone else how much you care. Life is good. Live well.