A few weeks back I set up a poll: Where would my beloved readers go if they had the opportunity? With an overwhelming four votes, Morocco swiped the gold from South Africa (two votes), France and Russia (each garnered one solitary vote). Apparently my Russian contingent (Ed, Ilona and Lana) missed the poll!
While my survey was hardly scientific, I am convinced that there is something magical about countries like Morocco, something that sparks wonder in the hearts of many who go through the majority of their lives following a routine down to the final ¨e.¨
Just the sound of the place will make one close his solitaire hand and rush to a discount travel website; in a whisper let Morocco out of your mouth, extending the final syllable, keeping your jaw open: Morocohhhh. The soft, rolling sound makes me think of endless winds that blow through sand mountains, brushing away animal and human prints.
For those whose most exotic aspect of life is the addition of cayenne pepper to their omelettes, sueños of faraway, unknown lands provide hope that there really is some place out there where life must certainly be wonderful. If my theory is correct that people dream of traveling to places like Morocco, Japan, Fiji and Thailand because of their mystical associations, maybe their is something we can all do to make our country and our homes a little bit more sacred (and not in the religious way).
What is it that we envy about certain cultures? Is it the fact that in photographs, natives of certain countries always seem to smile like their lives are the best in the entire world, despite the fact that they don't have so much in terms of material goods by our standards? Are we jealous of their contentedness? Or maybe it is the clear, turquoise waters of Fiji, or the volcanic mountain ranges of Thailand that allures us with their sheer beauty.
Maybe these images we have are just made up pictures, glimpses that don't give us the real picture of what exists in faraway places. Despite the fact that we want these places to be everything we imagine them to be, they are much more. If we are searching for places of beauty, can we find them in our own homes?
I myself will admit a tendency to search for something new, something better than what I have. But this is the problem. We do not know ourselves well enough, we do not want to take the time to find the beauty that no doubt exists within ourselves and our communities. A quick solution is what we like. But easy fixes don't usually do the trick, just like moving to a new place in itself won't change the way one feels about the world. I did not mean to spend so much time extrapolating the results of some fun survey, but they got me thinking, and hopefully you as well.