Every now and then, when I feel the need to be somewhere filled with sunshine and olive groves and the fragrance of oleander (ie most days during a typical English summer!), I reach for my copy of Under the Tuscan Sun by Frances Mayes. So often have I read it that I usually just open it at random and read a few pages until I imagine I have the sun on my back as I sit on the terrace with a glass of chilled wine in my hand.
A couple of nights ago, I actually decided to re-read it from the beginning and was struck by this paragraph in which the author’s considering why she’s choosing to buy a second home in Italy:
‘I love the islands of the Georgia coast, where I spent summers when I was growing up. Why not a weathered house there? … A place where my sisters, friends and family could visit easily. But I keep remembering that anytime I’ve stepped in my footprints again, I haven’t felt renewed. … Italy seems endless alluring to me – why not, at this point, consider the opening of The Divine Comedy: What must one do in order to grow?‘
Mayes talks about the ‘pull to the known’ – the temptation to do what she’s always done – and how she is slightly more drawn to the idea of being ‘susceptible to surprise’. I love the quotation from The Divine Comedy and how she sees that element of surprise as being a part of our growth as individuals. This passage by Mayes reminded me of my client, Carrie, and how she has decided to consciously endeavour to step out of her rut to improve her life.
Today’s pebble for your contemplation: what might happen if you allowed yourself to be ‘susceptible to surprise’ this week?
What do you think?
Turning over pebbles is the blog of Thinking Space Coaching.
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