“Look up!” This is what I learned when I lived in Spain, as a college exchange student. I was always, continually, completely and totally… lost. I have no sense of direction, and Sevilla is full of curvy streets that lose even the best navigators.
Today I was cross country skiing with a friend who has seen my posts of “Beauty of the Day” on my personal Facebook page. But she wondered why I was doing this? Was it just a photography project, she asked?
I explained to her about Spain, and my life there. I told her how I really knew nothing about the language when I arrived, and how the mother of the family made fun of me for it. I explained how I spent far too much time searching for markings on the walls of the buildings, usually graffiti that was spray painted on in a haphazard fashion… or looking down, avoiding trash and dog droppings, making sure that I didn’t twist an ankle on the way to class on the uneven cobble stoned streets. I had very little money to spend, and I missed my family terribly. Although I was very determined that I’d never return home early, especially after my family had sacrificed for me to be able to go, my mood often matched the depressing streets I stared at.
One day–I don’t remember why–I finally looked up. The sky was a gorgeous shade of blue. And the giralda–a golden-colored statue that soars on the highest church tower there–glittered and shown. It was beautiful!
From that point on, whenever I find myself dwelling too long on the negatives, I remind myself to “look up”. Literally. Figuratively. Physically.
It always works, too.