I found another pile of brochures from different places around Australia and Sri Lanka. I think the biggest collection I have is travel magazines, brochures and books. They say that someone’s personality can be determined by what they’ve got in the bookshelf. I think these three things really do tell a lot about myself.
I love to read, although the amount of books I read varies form time to time and from book to book. When I find a really good book I usually finish it within 2-4 days, depending on how long it is. Shantaram is one of those books. But I have also read books that take me ages to read. These books are usually books with no stories, such as”self-help” books. Not to say that they are bad in any way, they are often quite good, filled with practical advise and tips on how to deal with life’s many challenges – so definitely well worth a read, but I usually need a story should I find it interesting enough to immerse myself in the book.
Half of the books I’m giving away today are crime fiction, written in Swedish. I know that Swedish people love crime series, both to watch and to read, but I’m not the typical Swede who loves to read about murder…no, I prefer to read something else, for example: books written by the Japanese author Haruki Murakami.
Brochures and travel magazines:
These two go hand in hand. This massive collection of brochures (referring also to previous blog posts with photos of brochures and magazines stocked up in piles) from so many different places is perhaps evidence enough to say that I LOVE to travel. Perhaps also that’s why I love the idea of minimalism. The feeling of freedom of having only one backpack with only a few belongings – it’s amazing. When we carry less stuff on our shoulders, the more freely we can move, the lighter we feel and the less things we have to worry about. This can also be interpreted metaphysically: The less clutter we carry with us in our minds, the more present we become and we feel lighter in both out bodies and our minds.
Travelling, for me, awakens the curiosity inside. When I travel I am curious about everything around me; the people, the culture, the environment. I feel alive and awake, it’s like I’ve been sleeping and suddenly I wake up and start noticing things around me. Normally in our daily lives we shut off our travelling mindset and we don’t notice things as much as when we travel. However, when we meet a traveller or when someone comes for a visit, then we are reminded. Those who comes to visit us are perhaps more open than we are at that point in time, because they are travelling, but they can help us to open our eyes again and then suddenly we see what they see: Adventure, the ugly and the beautiful, cultural customs and behaviour, people, the flower on your door step, the spider web in the windowsill, the friendly nod from your neighbour, the rainbow behind the clouds and so on.
There is a word in Swedish called hemmablind. Literally it means home blind, which means that we are blind to the environment around us. For example, we don’t often see the beauty (or the mess) of our own home until someone points it out for us.
When I lived in Sweden I didn’t really appreciate all the good things and all the beautiful things that surrounded me, but now every time I go back to my home country I see a lot of things that I didn’t appreciate before.
A friend of mine told me a story once about the two different types of people: the bird people and the tree people. The tree people have their roots firmly in the ground, they spread their branches and their leaves move gently in the wind. The bird people, they come and go. They like to explore different trees, they can choose to come back home to their nest anytime, but they need to fly, the wind is what makes them soar. I believe I’m one of the bird people, but the bird nor the tree is better than the other, they make the world go round as they live in symbiosis.