Life Lessons from a Cucumber Sandwich

Last week when we were in Singapore we had afternoon tea and it looked something like this.


There was just so much to eat. I felt like I was in my own episode of Sam Vs Food but the hardest part was really knowing what to eat first. Not to mention the never ending series of conundrums of what to eat next.

While my mouth was full of the first morsel (the cucumber sandwich, in case you were wondering,) I asked David what he was going to eat next. And he said “I haven’t thought about it yet, I’m still eating the cucumber sandwich.”


So I changed the subject. “Where shall we go on holiday next year?” To which he answered, “how can I tell you where I want to go next year on holiday, when I’m still enjoying the holiday I’m having.”

Then he says to me, “you’re always thinking about the next thing. It’s like when you ask me what I want to eat for dinner tomorrow, when I haven’t finished my dinner today.”

Really, do I do that? I thought about it and actually, I’m guilty as charged.  Yes, I do.

It’s like I live life constantly looking forward to,  and thinking about the next thing.

When I’m speaking to someone, I’m always thinking about what I want to say next.

When I eat breakfast, I’m already thinking about  what I want to eat for lunch.

When I’m out for a run, I’m always thinking where or when I’ll run next.

And even when I’m blogging, I’m always thinking about what to write next (I’m a total fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants-blogger, scheduling is an anathema to me.)

Even while I’ve been on this epic holiday, I’ve always been thinking about the place I’m going to next.

Why do I do that?  I’d like to think that I’m just super organised and like to plan ahead. I’d like to scoff at David’s inability to think of two things at once (every one knows men can’t multi task.) But I’d also like to enjoy the moment I’m in.

I wonder if my run in with cancer left me with such a voracious appetite for life that I’m constantly looking to the future for my next “life fix.”  Or if I was always like that with a brain that’s always one step ahead of my body. Who knows?!

I felt a bit weird when I thought about all the “next things.” While it’s great to look forward to stuff and have a purpose, it’s just as important to fully immerse oneself in the  present and live  in the moment.

The  “next thing” is a mystery, but today, and the now is a gift, that’s  why it’s called the present. I’m going to live in it. And when the “next thing” comes around, I’ll be sure to enjoy that too.

And that my friends is the life lesson I learned from my cucumber sandwich

Do you live in the moment or  live for the next thing? Have you had any epiphanies recently?

  • I’m guilty of this too Sam. Always looking for the next something. Sometimes I listen to Eckhart Tolle and remember to slow down for a few days, but invariably I forget and resume my regularly scheduled thinking! Enjoy Singapore, especially the food (although I’m sure there’s better things to be tucking into than cucumber sandwiches!) xx

    • Just googled Eckhart Tolle – I think I need to listen to him too! The cucumber sandwiches were great, as were the dumplings! Now in Bali where I am drinking all the cocktails and eating all the things and of course, enjoying the moment(s)! Hope you’re having happy holidays too xx

      • It all sounds divine Sam! Should the mood strike you, I recommend an audio copy of Practicing the Power of Now. A xx

  • Hehe…sometimes when I’m to happy, too, I want to think about the next happy thought. Seize the moment as they say. Enjoy the holiday! Looking forward to more stories 🙂

    Gourmet Getaways

    • Oh, I’m pleased I’m not the only one who can be overcome by enthusiasm! The holiday has been amazing, I wish it would never end! Seizing lots of moments and I hope you are too xx

  • Of course we ate every last morsel, Trish. We were kind of on a meal replacement diet. High Tea replaced lunch and dinner!

  • There’s nothing quite like a crustless cucumber sandwich I tell you! That’s so funny – that’s just how I feel, about the cramming it all in, I don’t want to miss a thing. My FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) is a force to be reckoned with!

  • Nat Smith

    For the first time in my life….ok, maybe the second time…I really don’t have that much to say. Your post has struck me today. I think there must be something about run-ins with ill health that leads to people being always looking for the next big thing. I do it too.

    Life lessons from Sam’s cucumber sandwich…who’d have thought?!

    • Maybe it’s a survivor thing, I don’t know, Nat but imagine if I had started with the mini bagel! Then what would have happened?! Praise be for the cucumber sandwich. Life is like a full time learning experience, it never stops!

      • Nat Smith

        We may have had a whole new Sam epiphany via the mini bagel! Imagine where that could have taken us. Life is a full time learning experience, I totally agree!!!

  • Lee S

    What an amazing holiday you gave had. I’m trying to live in the here and now but do stress ahead. ❤️

    • Yes, Lee! It has been amazing. I’m grateful for every minute! Living in the here and now is much better than worrying about stuff that hasn’t happened yet. Love today! xx

  • Same as you a couple of years ago on holiday I started planning the next one and Richard said can we just finish this one off please? I think we are all so busy and trying to fit everything in our brains run faster than our feet.
    PS I start with the savoury too 🙂

    • I agree, Nancy. Life just moves so fast these days and there’s just so much fun to fit in! I hope you’re fully enjoying the holiday you’re on, and that won’t start planning the next one until you’re safely back on Aussie terra firma!

  • I hear ya! I struggle to remain in the present.

    I think also it’s a bit of the teacher training- when you’re teaching a lesson and you’re thinking 2 steps ahead, trying to make sure everything is running to plan whilst averting any disasters.
    Hmmmm… I have a craving for cucumber sandwiches now. xxx

    • Yes, when I’m teaching, I’m always thinking about the next thing. Thinking 2 steps ahead is part of the job description!

  • I had never really thought about it before in that way but yes, I am always thinking about when I can do something have something or go somewhere again, before I have finished enjoying it the first time x

  • Oh this is so me!
    How do I change?? I might make some cucumber sandwiches for lunch tomorrow.