Much as travelers may try not to make sweeping conclusions based on superficial observations, happiness is a common attribute applied to Cubans by foreign visitors to the island. In this reflective essay, writer and tango aficionado Maraya Loza Koxahn shares her experiences in Cuba and thoughts on happiness as viewed through the lens of music and dance.
Living in a foreign country is an opportunity to learn about a different culture, a different way of seeing and responding to the world. It provides an opportunity to immerse yourself in new customs and traditions, and to see what really matters and is important to people around the world. It is also an opportunity to examine, from a distance, your own customs and traditions and, most important, your own cultural assumptions.
by Jenny McBain
Perhaps my nine-year-old son has the makings of a therapist. A Scottish friend was hosting us in his deluxe apartment in Edinburgh’s Royal Mile the ancient street which wends its way from Edinburgh Castle to Holyrood Palace. In addition to owning a number of desirable properties, my friend is in possession of a title and sports a "Sir" in front of his name; but wealth did not buy him happiness feeling distinctly discontent when he sought my son’s council.
The only thing that can ruin your life is death; everything else is just an experience. Seems obvious, now that I read it. But, this statement has taken me years to write and even longer to truly understand.