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Old Story

Old Story
(Vinícius de Moraes)

 

After crossing many paths
A man came to a clear and long road
Full of calmness and light.
The man walked the road
Listening to the birds and receiving the strong sunlight
With his chest full of songs and his mouth full with smiles.
The man walked days and days on the long road
Which was lost in the uniform plain.
He walked days and days…
The few birds flew away
Only the sun stayed
The strong sun that burnt his pale face.
After a long time he remembered to look for a spring
But the sun had dried them all.
He observed the horizon
And saw that the road went beyond, way beyond all the things.
He observed the sky
And did not see any clouds.

And the man remembered other paths.
They were hard, but the water sang in all the springs
They were steep, but the flowers embalmed the pure air
His feet bled on rough soil, but the friendly tree guarded his sleep.
Over there, there was storm and there was abundance
There was shade and there was light.

The man looked at the clear and desert road for a moment
Looked into himself for a long time
And turned back.

Velha História
(Vinícius de Moraes)

Depois de atravessar muitos caminhos
Um homem chegou a uma estrada clara e extensa
Cheia de calma e luz.
O homem caminhou pela estrada afora
Ouvindo a voz dos pássaros e recebendo a luz forte do sol
Com o peito cheio de cantos e a boca farta de risos.
O homem caminhou dias e dias pela estrada longa
Que se perdia na planície uniforme.
Caminhou dias e dias…
Os únicos pássaros voaram
Só o sol ficava
O sol forte que lhe queimava a fronte pálida.
Depois de muito tempo ele se lembrou de procurar uma fonte
Mas o sol tinha secado todas as fontes.
Ele perscrutou o horizonte
E viu que a estrada ia além, muito além de todas as coisas.
Ele perscrutou o céu
E não viu nenhuma nuvem.

E o homem se lembrou dos outros caminhos.
Eram difíceis, mas a água cantava em todas as fontes
Eram íngremes, mas as flores embalsamavam o ar puro
Os pés sangravam na pedra, mas a árvore amiga velava o sono.
Lá havia tempestade e havia bonança
Havia sombra e havia luz.

O homem olhou por um momento a estrada clara e deserta
Olhou longamente para dentro de si
E voltou.

 

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I’ll never have enough time to read all the books I want to read.

Photo courtesy of Sarah Horrigan

When I was little I always enjoyed getting lost in a book. It was always a new adventure, and I’d jump in head first. And only when that adventure was over I’d go looking for a new one. Every book was a whole new world waiting for me. There was nothing better than getting home from school, kicking my shoes off, and grabbing a book to read. If it was sunny I’d go sit outside with my book, my best friend. It was a great time, one where my only responsibility was to get good grades and learn new things.

Funny fact: I had a small blue suitcase I used to fill with books to take to the beach with me for our summer vacation. Who needs toys when you can have books, right?

Now things are different. Work provides me with money needed for bills and food. That seems to be my top priority. Not that I wouldn’t like to get lost in a book on a sunny afternoon at the park, but it feels nice to have food on the table, you know. And books became the friends I see only occasionally late at night before falling asleep or on a weekend.

But my biggest problem is not the lack of time but the fact that I keep jumping from one book to the other. I’m always reading two or three books at a time. When do we graduate from reading one book at a time to this ADD habit of having to read more than one? It’s like my brain can’t be happy with just one. Sometimes I’m in the mood for a novel, sometimes I want a short story. Sometimes I want something that will make me think, at others I just want something that will make me laugh. It all depends on how my day went, how my mood is at the moment, and how much time I have to devote to reading today.

How about you? Do you also read more than one book at a time? Do you also carry a book with you wherever you go? Do you carry more than one, just in case?

 

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Gotta love hotels.

Just read the Blog Improvement Fee post by Telling Dad. Awesome post. He twists a terrible experience into something you can’t stop reading and that makes you laugh. I smiled at the exchange with the border patrol agent, how could I not? But when I got to the giant Yo Gabba Gabba hats I couldn’t stop laughing. Hilarious.

I’ve also had some pretty great experiences staying at different hotels. I’ll never forget that one time I went to Washington DC and they got us a closet for a room. I think they were going for cozy. Or claustrophobic. Not sure which.

And don’t you love the fees they charge us? So awesome. Can’t wait for when they start charging us to breathe as well. I even imagine them asking “Ma’am, would you like to breathe our air or did you bring your own?” And as soon as you’d open your mouth to answer, they’d say “Too late, you’re already breathing our air. That will be added to your bill, along with all the other 37 fees. Enjoy your stay.”

 

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A bus ride to remember.

She woke up really early that morning to take a bus to another state. She got to the bus and just sat there, in her seat, waiting for the journey to begin. Because of the time, all she could see around her were the sleepy faces of barely awake people. Except for this one little girl running up and down the narrow corridor.

The child seemed pretty awake and happy. Two things the other passengers of the bus were not. Add that to the fact that the little girl was making noises in a small, confined area full of not-yet awake people, and you have a bus full of very irritated people.

No one said a thing, though. No one wanted to be the grumpy one calling the mother’s attention, telling her to control her wild child. No, they wanted someone else to do it. They would exchange glances with one another, turn around in their seats, an annoyed look on their faces, trying to show the mother how uncomfortable the behavior of her child was and how much that was bothering everyone around.

A few more minutes passed and people could barely contain themselves. Suddenly a woman at the back of the bus stood up, and with a very serious face said, “Disneyland, sit down right now!”

And with that everyone burst out laughing.

I hope Disneyland, wherever she is, continues to make people laugh to this day.

P.S.: What prompted me to write this story was the Stop! In The Name Of… Terrible Baby Names post. This is a true story, though. Couldn’t make that up if I wanted to.

 

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