The newspaper this past week officially deemed Chateau Gontier (the small town 3 hours outside of Paris that I am training at) to be the most beautiful city in all of France. Sounds like a hokey, tourist slogan...but having visited Oxford University and seeing where Lewis Carroll wrote his famous novel about Alice and her notorious looking glass and her ventures to wonderland, I am daily convinced that the wonderland she fell into...was here.
Every day is like a surreal, breathe-taking, magic land here.
If Alice Through the Looking Glass wasn't in your library as a dorky kid like myself, imagine Beauty and the Beast in real life. This is where Belle grew up.
I just want to bottle up this fresh grass smell. As I wander the roads and traverse the side streets of the French countryside, I can feel myself taking in deeper breathes. It is like I am trying to swallow the deep scent of fresh cut grass, blooming flowers, and sunshine so that my body won't forget its magic and pureness.
I realize that "the grass is always greener" but here it seems like the grass is also taller and flowing more magestically than anywhere else! People spend time trimming perfect hedges and the lands seem to flow endlessly with uncut grass blowing in the winds.
Realizing that my visit to this wonderland is soon coming to an end, I am doing my best to be truly grateful for each moment. Being thankful for the fact that I have time during the day to go for an hour long walk. Basking in the sunshine as I meditate in the middle of the afternoon. Watching the bright blue skies endlessly span over the bright green landscape is making each step of my daily run easy. It is becoming evident that I either never took enough time to really breathe in all that was around me before. Maybe this was due to stresses from "real life" - always having a work project or looming home "to-do" list cluttering my mind. In this new reality, where I can just wander outdoors, basking in its beauty, without any unbearable tasks distracting me- I am feeling really at peace. I am able to take the time daily to reflect on all the good in my life - all my loved ones, daydreaming about goals, all the joy in the world, and how wonderful life is.
I realize it will be a challenge to return home, where the grass is not so green, or tall, or vast- to step away from the daily stresses and take the time to breathe it all in. Maybe if I make the effort to do this, I will realize that life at home is just a lovely- just as green - and that I just was not opening my eyes enough.
Believer that everyone is special.