A Woman Defined

Art & Culture by Mahvash Mossaed

Live as though You are in Hawaii

February 5, 2013

It is a fact that everyone already knows: we live in a fast-paced life; time passes ever so quickly. We get up in the morning, and in no time, it is already midday, and then the day is gone, and it’s already evening. Last week? Oh,  it seems as though it was just yesterday. Last year? Oh, it seems as though it had just blended into years ago. Maybe it is living in southern California, where we are always driving, where we are always running from here to there, that makes us feel that way. It’s true that I dread to drive when people are just going home from work. Everybody is so much in a hurry; everybody is so agitated and impatient. If you are not driving as fast as they want you to drive, people really get annoyed and mad at you. They tail you, and if you happen to look in the mirror and they see that you are looking at them, they make hand gestures, as if saying, “What is it all about?! What is going on?!” When you let someone pass you, right after, when you get to a red light, you can see him in his car, stuck behind the red light, mad as hell. That’s when you can happily kind of give them a meaningful smile, as if to ask, “Was it all worth it?” Yes, I dread the crowd in rush hour, for they are so restless. Probably, they are carrying the frustration of whatever went wrong in their whole day at work. In them, they are storing all the madness, and now they see it as a good time and place to let it out and get even and retaliate on the road. Do these drivers really get to where they have to be five minutes earlier?  If they do, is it really worth it? We are a nation over stimulated by sensationalism of the media, always in a state of high anxiety, running on a treadmill that is on high speed without ever stopping. Soon, we will have no one to smell the roses, soon we would have forgotten how to smell the roses, not being completely in our body, not being in the moment and in the now, but only lost in the restlessness of  our mind and thoughts.

My friend was living not too far from where I live until a few years ago. One day, she packed everything and decided to move out to Hawaii. She had told me the story of  how long it took her to adjust the clock in her to the time and the quiet and slow pace of life in Hawaii. She told me that one day, she was in line at a supermarket doing her weekly shopping when she noticed a woman who had just one item to pay for. So she kindly offered her; because the woman only had one item, my friend welcomed her to go ahead and in front of her in the line. The woman smiled, and in a very laid back and relaxed manner, replied, “Oh, not at all!  I am not in a hurry, not going anywhere, no need for it. After all, this is Hawaii.” When I heard her little story, I thought to myself, Oh, how I wish we could all live every day as though we live in Hawaii!

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