We planned this trip a few months ago. A weekend retreat in the English countryside. A place close enough that meant travelling there was relatively easy, but far enough away to give us the feeling of being away from the hustle and bustle of London life. We found a lovely cottage in a town just outside of Ipswich; a log fire, a 300 year old building and our only obligation was to relax.
After a 1 hour train from London to Ipswich we jumped in a taxi – excited to see our weekend home. Long walks, fresh air and peacefulness was moments away. As newcomers to the area, we asked the driver about the place we were headed. We chose well! He confirmed we’d be very happy. A village like atmosphere with a few shops and pubs, but mostly space to just be.
But then he started up-selling other opportunities. He suggested other places we could visit…You could do this, you could do that…”It’s a shame you didn’t come in the car, you could have went ‘there’. And – you are so close to ‘this’ amazing place you should really try and visit ‘this’ place too”.
Our taxi driver we’d just met was giving us a new agenda. Our relaxing weekend of enjoying stillness in each other’s company was being traded for more new experiences. More sights to see. Better countryside. More this. More that. Better this. Better that…
As we listened, we politely engaged in the possibilities, but firmly declined.
“Thank you for telling us. But all we want is a peaceful cottage and a place to walk. That’s why we didn’t bring a car. We didn’t plan to be chasing round the country trying to find greener grass and older buildings.”
Sometimes you have to commit to the beautiful and simple plan you have. Opportunities will arise and invite you to change your plan.
Stay committed, politely decline and keep things simple.