Thursday, 17 July 2014

Children at Play

The time is right for a few smiles, to help my family and me deal with the sudden ill-health of our pet cat. He's been with us for almost 17 years...the equivalent of 83 human years. He's a handsome fella, prowls around like a tiger cub, and knows it too! 17 years together makes him a very loved and cherished family member, bringing us immense joy. It amazes me just how much our pet animals understand us, sense our moods, and soothe us as and when needed.

These pictures of children at play made me smile, and I'm sharing them with you in case you need a few smiles today.

Tuesday, 1 July 2014

The Inspiring Story Of Banana George

This inspiring story is from the facebook page, Humans of New York. It is a reminder that we must never think of ourselves as being "too old, too young, too sick, too poor, too rich or too anything" to accomplish whatever is it we want to do. Believe and Act.  

I stumbled upon a National Treasure yesterday.
I was walking down 3rd Avenue when I noticed an old man in a wheelchair. He was being pushed by a caretaker. Despite his physical condition, he had dressed with extreme care. He wore an outlandish yellow outfit. Everything about him was yellow, from his shades to his socks. Intrigued by his appearance, I bent down and asked for a photograph. He silently nodded approval.
After I'd taken his photograph, his caretaker offered a formal introduction: "This is Banana George," she said, "the world's oldest barefoot waterskier. He's 97 now. When he was 92, he set the world record for the oldest person to waterski barefoot."
Banana George didn't even begin waterskiing until he was 40. But it soon became his passion. So much so that he began doing shows at Cypress Gardens-- hopping jumps and riding with women on his shoulders. In the course of his career, he's broken his back 4 times. He's also broken his ankle, knee, and eleven ribs. Banana George waterskied until the last possible moment. I've seen footage of a very old George being pulled through the water in a wheelchair-on-skis, smiling like a madman.
Here you can see a short video I found of Banana George skiing on his 90th birthday:
Banana George is a testament to loving life, and he deserves to be celebrated. 
His favourite quote: "Don't wait for the next thing, make the next thing happen!"

Wednesday, 18 June 2014

The fabric of Life


"We want to wear high brands...
yet we are most comfortable in our pyjamas.
We want to dine at the Taj or the Marriot...
but what we enjoy even more is a cup of tea at a roadside stall
in the company of friends.
We dream of owning big cars and going for long walks...
yet we talk our hearts out only when walking down a long road.
We have 64GB iPods filled with thousands of songs...
but sometimes a song on the radio brings a smile beyond comparison."
                                                   Author Unknown

Isn't this how life is? We want this but we also want that. And what's wrong with that? There is a time for this and a time for that. The contradictions are what makes life interesting. 

We can have the iPod, and also enjoy the unexpected surprise of hearing a favourite song on the radio. We can luxuriate in the opulence of the Marriot as well as relax in the casual ease of a roadside stall. Different experiences weave together to form the fabric of our lives.

Monday, 7 April 2014

The 'Secret Of Life'...where can you find it?

Where can you find the secret of life? Where can you find peace, joy, health and happiness? 

All of us do the things we do because we believe they will make us happy. We are constantly searching for happiness through the people we spend time with, the music we listen to, the foods we eat, the places we travel to, the things we buy, and so on. 

The musk deer lives in forested regions of high mountain ranges like the Himalayan mountains. The adult male is highly prized for it's musk gland which secretes a waxy substance which is greatly sought after by the perfume industry. Yet the deer itself is not aware of where this attractive fragrance comes from, and searches for it all around.

We are often like the musk deer searching for the secrets to happiness and well-being, and not sure where to look for it. 

This little poem below, expresses our search very effectively:

As the Lord God was creating the world
He called upon His Archangels.
The Lord asked His Archangels to help Him
decide where to put the Secret Of Life.

"Bury it in the ground," one angel replied.
"Put it at the bottom of the sea," said another.
"Hide it in the mountains," another suggested.

The Lord replied, "If I do any of those,
only a few will find the Secret Of Life.
The Secret Of Life must be accessible to EVERYONE."

One angel replied, "Why not put it 
in each man's heart?
Nobody will think to look there."
"Yes," said the Lord, "Within each man's heart."

And so it was---
The Secret Of Life lies within all of us. 

Friday, 4 April 2014

Are You Beautiful?

Are you beautiful? What do you think?

Most of us fall short of the parameters of beauty as shown in the media. Not tall enough, not thin enough, not clear-skinned enough, hair not rich and gleaming enough, smile not aesthetic enough, waist not pinched-in enough, legs not long enough, lips not sultry enough, nose not aristocratic enough...the list is endless.

And in countries like mine where people are dusky or dark-skinned, nothing matters more than being light-skinned! Having fair skin makes up for every other disadvantage. Sales of "fairness creams" is brisk and unimaginably high.

So do all of these things make you beautiful? Well, I guess they do. But they also create a beauty which is just skin-deep. Audrey Hepburn famously said that to have beautiful lips you must always speak well of others, and to have beautiful eyes, you must see the good in people, and that true beauty is reflected in the soul.

Your opinion of yourself is what matters the most. If you think that you are beautiful, then you are! And it's not difficult to appear beautiful to others. You just need to be friendly, helpful and kind. Think and speak well of those you interact with. Avoid gossip, rudeness, hurtful remarks and inconsiderate behaviour. Above all, choose to be happy, and to spread cheer wherever you go. And Smile.

Listen to this truly inspiring speech made by Lupita Nyong'o, Oscar Winner, about how she learnt to believe that she was beautiful.