I once heard someone famous say, "adversity doesn't build character, it reveals it".
That adage is forefront in my mind this weekend as I jet off for a week of fun and frolicking with three girlfriends.
One of us is turning 40 and our escape to an all-inclusive resort is her birthday bash. Frankly, I'm contemplating booking a week in detox for when we return.
While I'm very excited about having a week-long party with my girlyfriends, part of me is concerned about the ability of foreign travel to highlight and exacerbate any niggling issues in a relationship.
I've known loving, wonderfully matched couples who return from vacations only to break up, having discovered unforgivable nasty habits or beliefs during the time away together. Two girlfriends of mine have never spoken again after a summer trip to Europe together. I never did figure out whether there was an incident or just a realization that they didn't share the same head space.
It's even more worrying since the group is all girls, and some women can't just fight it out and be friends again after a disagreement. Some of us (OK, I'm talking about myself here...) tend to let things fester. We hold grudges, read unexpected intentions into actions and can be prone to silly games, especially with other women, and especially when there's alcohol involved. Happily, we're all happily attached, so at least there will be no competition over the attention of fellas at the resort, at least I don't think that will be an issue. hmmmm. We're in our forties and on vacation; are we supposed to be ogling the pool boy, Mrs. Robinson?
I quite love these girls and my fondest dream is to be friends with them forever. Here's hoping we all remain on our best behaviour while we misbehave by the pool.
Now, were did I put that brochure for the detox centre?