Friday, August 27, 2010
less is more...
I love animals (and not necessarily zoos) because they rely on their instincts only. They are not rewarded with a paycheck for a job well done at the end of the day nor do they complain if they don't have a new blanket to sleep on when night falls. They don't have mirrors where they tell themselves daily "I look too fat" nor do they have neighbors they envy because "their cage is bigger than mine". Nope, animals are pretty darn simple creatures who seem to take whatever is thrown at them (both literally and metaphorically) with a grain of salt.
I am always reminded of a most valuable lesson when I am around animals and it is this: "Less is More." Plain and simple. The less physical clutter you have in your life, the more room you have to roam free like a dolphin playing passionately in the ocean ...
I am not sure where I first learned this valuable lesson but it is one that I hold very near and dear to my heart. I do know, however, that I often attribute my sudden shift to a literal "lightness in baggage" in life to a moment when I was about 10 years old.
My family was on its way to the airport to catch a flight to Greece (I believe this was my first time there) and I was carrying a HUGE yellow vinyl suitcase ( I swear it was bigger than me ) with about 8 pairs of girly-girl shoes and every summer outfit one can possibly imagine a 10 year old Greek/Brazilian girl would be wearing in 1974 . Halfway down to the family station wagon, my dad stopped me dead in my tracks, took one quick look at my oversized Samsonite, picked it up , opened it up with 2 quick "clicks", and dumped out its entire content right there on the ground in front of me.
All I could I hear my dad saying at this point (through my tears and heavy dramatic sobs) was this : " one pair of shoes, one pair of shorts, one bathing suit- now go back and pack- hurry up- we leave in 5 minutes !"
Well, needless to say, I have never been the same since.That wonderful lesson of "less is more" was truly ingrained in my brain from that day forward. I have never packed more than a couple of pairs of shoes in my luggage since and I have yet to check a bag in on any flight I have taken in about the last 15 years.
The liberation of having so little on your back when you travel is now something I crave. Knowing your whole world is in a 2x3 ' bag keeps one mind and heart focused on the more important things in life: the world around you and the inner "stuff" you always carry with you in your heart and mind. Now that is the kind of baggage I don't mind checking in. And you never get charged an extra cent.