Tuesday 27 November 2018

solving problems

I have always been the problem solver... admittedly, better at solving other people’s problems than my own, but still... and yes, it is tiring and yes, sometimes I get fed up with always (surely, it cannot be “always” but it seems like that inside my head...) being the one to save the day but hey, I am who I am. And yes, when I get problems I cannot solve, I do suffer! For a while... eventually I find a solution to almost everything, may that be my washing machine breaking down (for the third time, damn it...), my mom being a xenophobic b***h or my boss dumping a shitload of (more) work on me right before the Christmas holidays... yes... problems of different levels of difficulty indeed.

But this post is not about the problems I have not been able to solve, that would be in no way “better than shoes”. This post is about all the problems I have been able to solve and to praise those moments in life when we actually come up with a solution, put it to action and we move on, problem-free. And no, it does not go without saying that “duh, you have a problem, you solve it”. No, some people like to linger to their problems, feel comfortable in their problems, intentionally leave them unsolved because, basically, they prefer to just nag about their problems to everyone instead of actually solving them. You see, these people have befriended their problems, have loved and cherished them for so long that perhaps now they even cannot imagine a life without them. Maybe they think that they can only have people’s attention when in trouble... better the devil you know...

Not me. And, I advise you, not you either. So, here is the best strategy to problem-solving you will ever come across: First, identify the problem... really! Don’t cheat, identify the real problem. Then, stop thinking of the problem and focus exclusively on solutions... weigh in more than one of those if you have the luxury to come up with a plurality of solutions. Then, chose the best solution. Which one is that, you ask. Well, evidently, the one with less stress involved. But not just for you, think of others too, less stress for you and an enormous amount for others is not on. Less stress for everyone. For the present and the future. There. That’s your solution. Go on now, my children, go solve your problems and live a long and happy life. That, is better than shoes.

Friday 2 November 2018


...are not, as such, better than shoes. Think highschool reunions... They can be dreadful! Stressful! Horrible! They can be all about who got the best job with the most money, who married well, who got divorced, who married well and got divorced, who put on weight, who put on new boobs, who has the best kids (yep, people do compare their kids... tragic, I know...) and ultimately, they can be all about which shoes to wear in order to convey the right message... succes, money, availability...

But some  reunions are not at all like that... they are about people who were friends and got separated not by choice but because, well, life happens and things happen and we lose touch and we always remember them fondly and we wonder what they are doing and one day out of the blue we get in touch again and then we get together for drinks and three hours pass and it feels like a moment and it is as if not a day has gone by since we last saw each other! And these reunions are a blessing! They are heart warming! They are better than shoes!

I was gifted with such a reunion tonight. I got together with a friend I hadn’t seen in more than 18 years and with whom I reconnected only last month. And we are practically neighbours! Ok, 45 minutes by plane but it’s just across the channel! Now, I’m not a very emotional person but seeing her after all these years and recognising her right away, “there she is” I though when I saw her coming, really brought tears to my eyes... and we hugged and I felt so, so happy! And we had so much to say, we have grown, he have been through so much, we have changed but at the same time we also have remained unchanged! It was just us two again, laughing and talking and having a drink just like back when we were at uni! It was as if not a day had gone by since we last saw each other!

My dear V, it was awesome seeing you tonight, my heart is filled with such joy you cannot imagine! I can’t wait for next time... 😉