350 words – 3 minute read

I’m writing this in wait.

The house over the way is in the midst of a major build and I’m poised.

I’m ready to catch the builder/plumber/joiner/sparky who thinks it’s ok to park right outside my house, eat boiled eggs then chuck the shells out of his car window.

I’ve practiced what I’m going to say.

I’ll be polite but forceful. Not too much sarcasm. I’ll have a clear message.

‘Pick your rubbish up, you filthy, disgusting person.’ Or something like that.

I’ve been here for half an hour now.

All the other contractors have arrived and started work.

But no shell-man. Yet.

I’m not moving.

Christine and I do regular litter picks around our neighbourhood – much to the amusement of some and fascination of others.

One friend calls us the Womble Warriors.

There’s a deep satisfaction in walking the lanes where we live and finding them green, lush and rubbish-free.

So why don’t I just take five minutes and pick up the mess, remove the unsightly shells and get on with my life?

It’s the need to be right.

There’s a problem with this. For me to be right, someone else has to be wrong.

Maybe there’s a better way?


Yes, that would be better. Less stressful. And it would certainly take less time.

But acceptance is a hard, bitter, pill to swallow.

If I clear up his mess, what’s to stop him from doing it again later on? Most likely while I’m distracted?

I feel my inner Victor Meldrew rising.  I’ll give it 5 more minutes.

Then I look up.  I see blossom, wildlife, birds, trees, spring/summer, wonderful colours.

I see another neighbour walking his dog and I’m reminded:

Dogs bark, cats meow, builders leave rubbish.

I have as much chance of getting my neighbour’s dog to meow as I do of stopping egg bloke from throwing rubbish out of his car window.

I’ve made a decision.  Not only am I going to pick up the egg shells, I’m going to do it with joy.


Be Brilliant!



  1. May 4th 2018 by Julie Wright

    This is so true! We should all learn acceptance – it is sometimes hard, but in the long run, much easier on self!

  2. May 4th 2018 by Mike Rainey

    I know exactly what you mean! On the few occasions I have decided to accept the situation and get over it, I have always felt better for it later on. Sometimes it is the “deciding to accept” that is hard!

  3. May 4th 2018 by Joanne Nuttall

    This makes me smile:) letting go to let better things happen – Brilliant!

  4. May 6th 2018 by Nichola Clydesdale

    I can be a bit Victor Meldrew, going to try not to be!

  5. May 6th 2018 by Anne Pickering

    Life is to short to let the small things in life get in the way in our enjoyment of getting on with living.

  6. May 7th 2018 by Dee Eaton

    I liked this post. Yes life is definitely too short to worry over things you cannot change. Sing Frozen’s ‘Let it go’ and smell the roses!

  7. May 8th 2018 by Karin Carruthers

    Acceptance is good and then to appreciate the fact you can bend down, pick it up and have a greater understanding of what pleases you, is the cherry on top of the cake – love this blog.

  8. May 17th 2018 by Mark Funnell


    Having recently watched the horizon program about Richard Gray recovering from a severe stroke

    I agree with you just clear up the annoying mess this time and move on life is too precious and too short

  9. May 19th 2018 by Jim c

    I ty often to remember the words of a great teacher of mine, “do you want to be right, or do you want to be happy?”

    Acceptance is the price of feeedom.

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