l'urgence de pendre son temps.
Anyone perusing the streets of Paris (or any major city in the world) could agree with me that graffiti is an everyday sight in the eyes of locals and tourists alike; unless your visiting Madrid, which is by far the cleanest, most pristine city I've ever visited (yet). In Paris, you will see the wall above on every other corner, depending on the arrondissement, some areas more than the next. This wall I found along Rue de Rivoli in the City of Lights. Not too far from the Louvre and Place Vendôme. What fascinated me about the wall enough to stop and read (and take a photo) was what the graffiti read. I am not fluent in French yet, but I know enough to navigate a menu, museum and the streets. So, when I read the writing on this random wall in one one of the more fast-paced sides of town, I was charmed that someone took the time to write:
"The urgency of hang time"
One of the locals we met while in Paris explained this quote rather lightheartedly and jokingly, saying that Parisians love to take their time. Also, she expounded on the quote by saying the person who wrote it was referring to "how urgent it is to take your time". While that may be true (don't ask me, I'm not a Parisian), it seems there's much more to it that simply taking your time. I had noticed this visit that I was experiencing some sort of "calm urgency". And I was determined to figure out exactly what it was. What makes this city so enticing? What more than the timeless buildings, the elegant women in their refined style and the charming cafes on every corner? The rich history and the respect for art? The delicate, rich, exquisite cuisine?
Our time in Paris was easygoing, carefree, made further enjoyable by the ethereal weather. I was sure to be still and present, soaking up the culture and the ambience. I couldn't explain what I was feeling at the time, but reminiscing on the experience now, I realize I feel inspired value my time. Not to simply take my time (my poor husband), but much deeper than that. I was so stirred to go deeper into that thought process. What does valuing time mean to me? It's simple and uncomplicated:
In everything, focus on being, more than doing.
- When preparing dinner for my husband & I: becoming the best chef and putting love into the meal, instead of just trying to get something on the table.
- While completing school assignments: becoming a critical, discerning thinker rather than just trying to obtain a "good enough" grade.
- When traveling: tapping into the culture of the city, accumulating experience and stories rather than just check marking a list of tourist destinations.
- When spending time with family and friends: being present instead of just being there.
- When writing: sharing my heart, passion and my story, instead of trying to churn out just content for content's sake.
- Being in rhythm with my guests while entertaining, rather than obsessing over everything so perfect.
- When taking in the arts, be it a museum, gallery, theatre, or music concert: interpreting the artists or authors purpose by letting the work speak to me, instead of being satisfied with surface value.
- When making a home: creating a destination that is personal and emotional, rather than just buying necessary furnishings and household items, regardless of whether or not it sparks joy (Kondo method, anyone?)
My list can and will go on. As the seasons of my life change and transform, I hope to always be mindful of valuing my time. As I mentioned in yesterday's blog post- as I travel through life, my most faithful companion will be my character.
What does that mean to value your time? I'd love to know how you would like to, or already use your time to live a more enriched, fulfilling life.