They were healing. Those long walks on the beach. Particularly when there was no one else around. Those hours of the day when the water was calm. There was something soothing in that feeling of warm sand under your feet and among your toes.
Since she was a child, Addison also loved to collect seashells along the water. It was something she learnt to do with her dad and a memory she cherished dearly.
But as she grew up, she found increasingly fewer seashells on the beach.
This was a day though when this changed.
There were abundant seashells along the waterline. All pretty in their own way, regardless of size.
But there was one that captured her gaze from afar. It was shinier than the rest, with bright rigged lines. It was beautiful in all its glory.
The moment she picked it up, she felt a blur and an instant pull. She blinked and realized she was on another beach somewhere even more mesmerizing than before. Someone was calling her name and she felt her heart skip a beat. She felt happy without knowing why. He was coming toward her and she could feel herself smile widely.
It may be a dream, or reality with a delay; it may take a magic seashell or simply perseverance; but whatever it is, life finds a way of compensating us for every hardship.
“Isn’t it encouraging to consider that every minute of the day two people – seemingly strangers – are getting to know each other and are falling in love as their hands softly touch?”
“Do you really think that’s possible?”
“It’s nice to believe in something we can’t see. It’s refreshing to believe that magic still happens. We need that kind of optimism in our lives. That sort of positiveness is so lacking in this world we’ve created”.
They were sitting on a couch talking all night. Neither of them could sleep. It was those late night talks about random issues that brought them closer. It was those things you tell a person at your most vulnerable time that help you form a stronger bond with them. Those thoughts that spring to mind at the most awkward of hours; the concerns you have but haven’t even admitted to yourself; the debates you feel too silly to have with anyone else.
The magic happens when you least expect it. When you’re hardly prepared for it. When you’ve planned everything but that. When you truly are yourself, without shame, prejudices or fear of what others will think of you.
When you let yourself go and are proud of who you are, the magic will happen.
Because you’ve been carrying it within you all along.
Every time she was invited into people’s homes, her gaze unconsciously went to their library. She fervently believed that a home without books was like a body without a soul. And she loved to discover where and how people had placed a library in their homes. But that wasn’t all.
It wasn’t enough to simply have a piece of furniture stacked with books.
It also depended on the quality and nature of those books; not only their content, but also their appearance. How a reader treats their books also says a lot about them as a person. Someone who appreciates their books and takes care of them, keeping them in pristine condition, is a much different character to one who breaks their spines and folds their pages.
A fun part of discovering new libraries, she found, was scanning the titles and discovering books she too read, or that were on her list to do so.
But the best memory she had of a home library was when the young man she had recently met gave her a tour of his favourite books. Rarely would someone share their virtual journeys with another like that. And the most reminiscent of all was when he took out a hardback book from the top right-hand corner of the tall living-room bookshelf, presenting it to her and saying, “You must have certainly read this one. I’m sure you know it”.
She took it in her hands as if receiving an invaluable treasure.
She read the title and gulped. The cover was filled with stars.
“Oh so you’re the star!”, the young man mimicked.
It was a line that you would recognise only if you had read the book or saw the film. But you would only appreciate the worth of the book if you – a true bookworm – had read it too.
That’s how stardust is formed. Magically. From the smallest and seemingly most insignificant things.
“A pessimist forgets
to laugh. But an optimist laughs to forget”. He was of the latter type. You
never quite knew though what he was trying to forget. He wouldn’t let you in.
Perhaps he was afraid of what you would find. Or that it would ruin the image
you had of him, of the person who was positive about everything and who always
found a silver lining behind every cloud.
He was sort of like that magical nanny Mary Poppins who was
“practically perfect in every way”
and who brought excitement and thrill to everyone around her.
He too believed that there was no better time than today.
There was no reason to complicate things and agreed that “anything can happen if you let it” because “everything is possible, even the impossible”.
One day his wife found him sitting in silence staring
outside the window into the rain. She asked what was wrong. He answered “nothing”. She was shocked. Nothing is a
word that can mean anything and everything. And it is never what it connotes – it
is never really nothing. So she decided to follow his path of thinking. “Nothing is ever truly lost or gone, it is
only out of place”. She stopped and saw him sigh. “When the world turns upside down, the best thing to do is turn right
along with it” she uttered. He immediately turned his frown into a wide
smile. He was touched that she had adopted his mentality when he needed it the
He believed that there is always a different point of view
to things if you simply change your position and look further. After all,
wherever you stand, there is “nowhere to
go but up”.
There are certain things you (can) do to get your mind off certain
circumstances. Especially when those thoughts cause a change in mood, dishearten
you and bring you down. One of the most recommended one is to clean the house. It
is the best way to keep yourself occupied. Plus you get the added bonus of
having a clean lodging afterwards.
When Marie put on her rubber gloves and took to general
cleaning, she never expected the surprise she found wedged between the living
room wall and the bookcase.
It was a note folded in four. It appeared worn in the sands
It was handwritten in a blue pen with calligraphic lettering
that revealed sentiment in the script.
“May you live each day
as if it is a wonder. May yourevel
at each new experience. May you never cease to learn, to read, to live. May you
always be inspired by everything around you so that you too may be the
inspiration for those around you. May you acknowledge your worth even when
others don’t. May you never stop caring
for others, no matter who they are, small or big, two-legged or four-legged, bigger
or smaller. May you dream, aspire, struggle, accomplish. May you comprehend
that we achieve something even in our failures. May you be brave enough to
survive the hardships, take the tough choices and be courageous enough to
change things when it is time. May you always smile. May you never stop
believing in magic.
When Grandpa got up with the rising sun, he did not expect
that the front door wouldn’t open. Neither the back. He knew it was going to be
a difficult day. But for some, it would be exactly the opposite.
He tip-toed into Jenny’s room and gently shook her to waken
her from dreamland. She half-opened her eyes and stretched every inch of her small
“Good morning, Grandpa,”
“There’s a surprise
outside your window,” he smiled.
She jumped out of bed and looked outside.
Everything was white. An impeccable white blanket had
covered everything as far as she could see. It was snowing all night and it
continued to do so now. They were snowed in.
Grandpa was concerned because they were somewhat isolated in
the village and their resources were scarce. He was planning to go into town today,
had the weather permitted it. But few things in life usually go according to
Jenny was excited; she was jumping up and down and rushing
to put on warm clothes in order to run outside. It was freezing, but enthusiasm
always keeps you warm.
“Come on Grandpa, let’s
go build a snowman!” she called as she tried to open the door.
The old man used a shovel, back-aching and almost sweating
in the sub-zero temperatures, striving to open the door.
When he succeeded the little girl ran outside and dived into
There wasn’t much he could do anyway. He just had to wait
for assistance. So they might as well have some fun in the meantime.
Snow beautifies everything. It is nature’s magic that fills
your soul with wonder.
This was her favourite time of year. Not because of the festive holiday season and the magic that spread everywhere, but because she loved the feeling of snuggling up somewhere warm with a hot beverage and good company.
He shared the feeling. Because it reminded him of how wonderful it was to feel like a child again. To be excited with the little things, to play without caring what others thought, and to rekindle his lust for life.
She brought that out in him. She made him happy.
And he made her forget everything that bothered her. He turned her negative obsessions to positive aspirations.
That night of a new moon, he took her hand and led her to a Christmas market. There were jingles in the air, the smell of roasting chestnuts, happy cheers and lots and lots of bright lights.
And in the midst of it all was that magical place.
He helped her onto a plastic almost life-size horse and his eyes sparkled as he saw her smile lighting up her entire face. Her eyes were two diamonds in the night. And he knew he was simply lucky to be there.
It is the people who rekindle that feeling of being a child who are most deserved to be loved by you. Because they remind you of that lost innocence and of that bewilderment at every single thing in life. Witness things as a miracle and you have found happiness.
“Those who don’t believe in magic will never find it” – Roald Dahl
Now that she had reached the top of her profession, the renowned showdancer was able to laugh at the reminder of her most embarrassing and agonising moment in her career. “It was during a royal Christmas ball,” she confessed. “I was astounded by the luxury of the ballroom, the immensity of the hall, the gold, the silver, every carefully placed ornament”. “I remember my jaw dropped open at the mere sight of it all”. “One of my co-dancers nudged me to say that she would organise the showdresses in a wardrobe ‘upstairs’. I didn’t know where that was but I entrusted her with the dress. I was gobsmacked with where we had come. But then the real show began. Because as soon as the light dimmed, the host announced that a ‘dance programme like no other worldwide’ would appear before the guests’ eyes. I was trembling with excitement. I suddenly flinched and realised I had very little time to get dressed. But where on earth had the girl placed the dresses?”
“With just a few minutes away from the show, I couldn’t for the life of me find neither my co-dancer, nor the dresses. Everyone else was getting ready, but no-one had seen the girl who had taken charge of my dress. I was the lead in this seasonal dance-story. There was no way I could not appear. And I needed that dress. I raced up and down the ballroom, in and out of the changing rooms, and as I saw that all the other dancers were almost ready, I panicked all the more. Suddenly, I found myself on another huge princely-like staircase with a red carpet neatly laid on every step. I sprinted up (or down, I can’t recall) and sprang into what appeared to be the world’s most elegant and spacious cloakroom. But I was not alone”.
“In the middle, on top of a square pouf sat a man, slim-figured with grey hair and a corresponding goatee, with a measuring tape hanging from around his neck. A royal tailor, I wondered. I had most probably looked pale from agony and fear. He was the exact opposite: restrained and composed. He got up and calmly walked towards me. ‘Are we looking for something in particular?’ he asked with a voice that emanated tranquillity. A recount of what had happened raced out of my mouth as he watched me unfazed. He then turned around and headed towards a tall wooden cupboard, he opened one door-flap – I couldn’t see what was inside – and pulled out the most beautiful pink showdress I had ever seen. It seemed custom-made for the exact role I was to play that night. He helped me put it on and I was so excited and panicking at the same time that I was not embarrassed that a strange man was helping me dress. I ran out of the room and – I still don’t know how – managed to get on stage at exactly the right moment. What is more, I remembered every single step I needed and gave the best performance of my career. It was the one that sky-rocketed me to the top; the one that filled me with confidence and made me believe that I was destined for more”.
“The funniest and even stranger thing that happened that night was that the girl and the costumes appeared as we were packing everything to leave after the performance. She asked me where I was hidden, as she was searching for me all night”.
Some things come into our life inexplicably, but always at the right moment. We simply have to be open enough and prepared to go with the flow of what life throws our way.