What the fairies told me
Happiness is everywhere. You just have to see it with your eyes
Well, all I had to do was say I wouldn't do any more long posts and there you go I feel inspired... This one was written in French, and translated into English. It's not always the case, and I wonder if you can tell the difference?
As I was saying earlier, I've just done a blitz tour of Brittany, not counting the three days in Saint Malo before swimming to Jersey (no, I'm kidding, I took the ferry, yes) - a blitz tour that only lasted three weeks. I wanted to see everything, I had little flags everywhere. I wanted to meet everyone who had invited me to visit too, left and right and every which way. But it's impossible to do everything in such a short time. I feel like I've just come out of a washing machine - not just turned over on all sides, but brand new and lightened of a lot of things that have been stuck to me for a long time. It was about time. Just goes to show, magic in Brittany does exist. I never expected to meet the fairies of my childhood stories, and although they are no longer to be found in these forests trampled by tourists, they are not far away, in the foliage and streams, you just have to take a moment to hear them and let them bewitch you.
One of the things they will tell you, the Breton fairies, which I fully agree with, is that happiness is to be found wherever you are, you just have to open your eyes. When you go on holiday, you feel good, refreshed by what is not your everyday life - but those who don't have your life will tell you that where you live, it's beautiful too! We soon forget to see what is around us. We bury ourselves on the spot. It's a conscious choice to open your eyes, like putting a smile on your teeth. And these two things are a magic formula for happiness. You have to want it. We complain a lot about everything around us, it's easy to see the flaws in every situation. It's harder to look for the positives, but it really pays dividends! It's the same difference between working enthusiastically to earn a living, or doing the bare minimum or nothing at all.
In France, people complain about the price of electricity. In South Africa they complain that there is no electricity. It’s a matter of perspective.
My heart takes to the skies with a flock of crows. It bursts into flames with a beautiful sunset. It sighs at the sight of a stream. It goes on a journey with a new friendship. It bursts out laughing at my little goddaughter's babbling. It rings with joy at the sight of a pretty bell tower. It roars with wonder at a passing troupe of motorbikes. It shines with the thousand colours of spring flowers. And it drowns in the music of the sea and the wind. You can't tie it to just one anchor, it feeds off all of these wonderful experiences.
I had forgotten that my heart remained still in the long endless roads of the African desert, the wild beaches of the Indian Ocean, the art galleries of central Johannesburg, with the happy and dusty crowds of the music festivals in the bush, in a campfire at night surrounded by friends, music and laughter, or in my kitchen among the complicated dishes, even burnt or gobbled up by the dog... But it was there, I didn't realise it, overwhelmed as I was by life as it presented itself.
Happiness is at our fingertips. It does not come to us when our ship comes in, as in the English expression, it is there everywhere. You just need to really put that smile on in front of any event for it to not seem so insurmountable. As one train often hides another, a great misfortune can be transformed into a wonderful happiness, if we accept it and put that smile on, and wait for the train to pass. It was the Breton fairies who finally made me understand that the fear of pain does more harm than the pain itself. No matter how long it lasts, pain always fades away in the end. Hurts always do heal. And if they don't, then you die, so what? It has to happen sooner or later. If you refuse to live through the strong moments in case they end up in pain, you don't live, in fact, all you do is endure. I think that's not a life. You have to find happiness wherever you are, live it, breathe it in very hard, without being afraid to say things that seem crazy. After all, who is judging you? Really only yourself. And I believe that happiness is even stronger when it is shared, with friends, family, or even in a crowd of strangers.
I live my life solo, but I find happiness at every turn, because it's there, and I pick it up every time I can. Whether it's on the edge of a cliff, at the foot of a tree, under an archway, along the road, in a field, in a great gust of wind, in a child's laughter, a friend's smile, my sister's cooking, my family's garden or the hospitality of strangers.
I do hope a little bit that I have inspired you to look around and see the happiness that is there 😊
I write this blog because I love writing, and so that my friends and family around the world can follow my adventures. If we've just met on the road or online, go ahead and subscribe so that the next episode lands straight in your mailbox. Also, I write in both English and French, so you can follow both if you want to practice the language, but if you don't, feel free to unsubscribe from either. If you know someone who needs a little inspiration, share one of my articles with them!
so happy to hear that youre finding happiness (: makes me happy!!
just a note: wonder if you could put a cue or something to indicate when there is a photo to look at? i dont follow along while i listen so i miss the photos, unless i look at them after i suppose... just a though (: have fun!!
"The fear of pain does more harm than the pain itself." So true. Reminds me of how my coach once said, "If you fail, then you'll be disappointed. So what?" It made me realize how we make pain seem so much bigger than it actually is. Great post!