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Episode # 66 – Beautiful people

The most beautiful experience of moving to another country is not only the new places I get to see, the food I get to taste, or the different cultures I get to learn from; it’s also the people I get to meet and the inspiring stories they share.

We all have amazing stories to share, and when dispensed, they become a magical stream of inspiring energy filled with wisdom, experiences, emotions, and valuable knowledge. Getting access to the most valuable stories requires something from both parties: the willingness to open up and the courage to become vulnerable.

Most conversations start friendly and superficial, and unfortunately, a lot of them stay there, but sometimes, when the stars are aligned, a magical window opens up and real human connection fills the space. You can feel it when it happens, and it’s the best feeling in the world because, for a moment, nothing else matters.

This week, I was reminded of a young couple we met a while ago at a beach club. We started talking, and since we got along so well, we decided to have dinner together later that evening.

Sofie was 28 years old, and she recently lost her mother to cancer after taking care of her for the past 6 years. She died at the age of 53, and shortly after that, she lost her father to cancer as well, and in that same year, she lost both her grandfathers. That is a lot to deal with for anyone, and especially for a young woman of 28. She decided to end this tragic and dark chapter of her life by taking a long and well-needed vacation with her boyfriend, Fred, and that was the phase of their lives when we met them.

That night she shared her story, and of course I was moved by it. Not only by so much tragedy but most of all by how she dealt with it. She experienced so much pain and sadness in such a short period of time that it was enough to drive anyone into darkness, and yet somehow, in all this darkness, she found light and managed to focus on that. It was clear to see that Fred was that beacon of light, and vice versa.

Fred is a walking piece of art. He is covered in tattoos, including his face, and I’m sure a lot of people have their thoughts when they meet him for the first time, but he’s the sweetest guy with a heart of gold, and his dream is to become a tattoo artist.

That evening, they opened their hearts and shared their feelings about their darkest hours. Tears were shed, and deep wounds started to heal. What made it even more memorable was the fact that Fred proposed to Sofie that night, and I’m very grateful they decided to share that special moment with us!

We all have our crosses to bear, and unfortunately, we cannot put them down; they’re ours to carry, but talking about them sure helps.

Being in the land of the unknown full of strangers is not easy when you want to connect with people to talk about things that hurt you, that scare you, that you’re not proud of, or maybe that you feel ashamed about. You miss that special person you can turn to when times get dark and the cross gets too heavy to carry all by yourself.

It’s easy to meet new people by going out for dinner and drinks and talking the night away, but it takes courage to open yourself up and let other people see who you truly are because you are going to experience rejection. Not everyone is looking for the same thing you’re looking for, and that’s perfectly fine, but that shouldn’t stop you from jumping into the arena of vulnerability and searching for those priceless stories and moments of true connection.

Nothing worth having comes easy.



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