just my luck.

a pilots daughter
You never know what worse luck your bad luck has saved you from.
— Cormac McCarthy, 'No Country For Old Men'
 Giant's Causeway, Northern Ireland

Giant's Causeway, Northern Ireland

My dreams of a own four-leaf adventure were all but shattered when I found myself shivering in cold sweat on the back of a tour bus headed to the Causeway Coast. 

Somewhere between Dublin and the eighth wonder of the world, I could no longer ignore the searing heat coming off my forehead.

I was sick.

Really sick.

Carrick-a-Rede, Northern Ireland

I traversed the picturesque Carrick-A-Rede bridge and clamored over to the awe-inspiring stones of Giant's Causeway with every finger, toe, and lucky appendage crossed.

Maybe it would pass.

Maybe I was just really, really tired. 

Maybe the ancient stones around me possessed some magical healing powers?! 

I rubbed them, clutched them, lay on them, and all but licked them in the hopes of a travelers miracle. 

no such magic.

In the days and nights that followed, I lay in my deeply modest hostel bunk praying that the luck of the Irish was more than myth.

I dreamt of creamy pints of Guinness and Gerard Butler look-a-likes playing the fiddle.

I crawled my way to the nearest pharmacy and cafe to load up on prescriptions and soup and tried not to notice the endless amounts of smiling, friendly, beautiful people on my way back to bed.

Though my symptoms refused to diminish, my spirits were lifted by my oh-so-brief jaunts through the streets of Dublin. On every corner was yet another sweet restaurant and movie-worthy pub.

It's a city that begs for friends to dine with and a few more to drink with.

but i could barely eat. and a drink would have probably killed me.

I was left feeling as if, perhaps, my luck had indeed run out.

Four days had passed. No jigs, no stout, no clovers. I was feeling defeated and I'd had enough.

I maxed out my painkiller doses and staggered my way onto a plane bound for London.

Ireland clearly didn't want me. 

I arrived in London relieved and ecstatic to see the familiar faces of friends.

i had escaped what seemed to be my most ill-fated destination.

but then,

before I could even utter "Cheerio",

I found myself dazed

and a little more than confused

on an operating table

being prepped for emergency surgery. 


in the most delicious turn of literary irony, it turns out that the luck of the irish might have been the very thing keeping me alive. 

Causeway Coast, Northern Ireland

Luck is believing youโ€™re lucky.
— Tennessee Williams, 'A Streetcar Named Desire'

author's note:

i am alive and well and the doctors and nurses of the Nhs took wonderful care of me. and my mum and dad. who flew around the world, booked the a hyde park suite and nursed me back to health with godiva chocolates and tickets to the west end. 

told you im lucky.

h. x