What I learnt on the French Riviera
Updated: Jan 12
"Life is really simple but we insist on making it complicated." Confucious
I've just returned from a brief holiday on the Cote d'Azur. The Riviera has won over my heart, mind and soul and as a former long haul junkie I'm now more of short haul kinda girl.
It's known for its spectacular light, warm mediterranean sea, outstanding architecture, mountainous countryside and sophistocated society, I also find it a wonderfully straightforward place. Straightforwardness is one of my personal values and I've been streamlining my life for seven years. This holiday I was reminded there's more work to be done.
Take food for example, (a subject close to my heart) the vegetables and fruit are just so great that a simple dish of tomato with bread, a sprinkling of salt and drizzle of olive oil tastes divine. A perfectly ripe advocado with some soft figs cut with a blunt knife is heaven. Back home dinner seems over-complicated. I've machines to make pastes and marinades, just because I CAN or because I need flavour substitutes! Then there's travel. On holiday I walk or take the train. Public transport out there is first rate but it's more that at home because I have a car I use it...even to go to the corner shop. My phone became a camera on holiday and I stopped checking it every five minutes. I let go of my need to be needed and this also gave my brain a chance to switch off. I wore the same t-shirt over and over rubbing it through in a bucket each night. At home despite spending most of my time in yoga pants I still seem to do endless laundry. Swimming in the sea or walking up a small mountain became my pleasurable past-time. Aside from costing nothing, my body moved rather than being in a fixed position at a desk, on a sofa and staring at a screen. I slept better and enjoyed the novelty of getting up early to see the sunrise. It was good for my soul.
And so this holiday I've learnt that even more 'straighforwardness' is needed. Simplifying my life creates peace in my heart, greater meaning and spiritual connection, I'm physically healthier and I have a life I don't want to escape from...except maybe for a brief jaunt to the Cote d'Azure :-))