What Matters

#6 What matters to Stephen

I love meeting people. And having endless conversation. But I hate small talk. After watching a ted talk about how to avoid it I wrote the questions I wanted to ask every person I knew and meet in order to avoid the superficial discussion and bond with them. And I decided to ask them. Here are the answers.

I met Stephen last year in very unique conditions. We were hiking a mountain with his group of friends in Malawi. 3 days and 2 nights in the nature, spending the day walking, admiring stunning views and sharing our out-of-breatheness. It is one of my best memory of Malawi. This very special moment with this group of beautiful human being. Stephen was here to volunteer and following my article about NGOs I decided to interview him and therefore decided to ask him my questions… Continue reading

Stephen, about changing the world

A few weeks ago I wrote an article about NGOs and how I am slightly lost and losing faith in them. And because I still want to believe that change is possible – not only in Africa but also at a planet scale (environnement…) I decided to talk about it to Stephen, a volunteer I met in Malawi last year,  and to ask him all the question I had in mind about this topic. It didn’t totally change my opinion but he gave me a little bit of faith in humanity and our ability to care and take care.

 

About creating, being an artist, a writer

Create

As far as I remember I liked creating things. Drawings, stories, plays. My imagination was on an endless run. When childhood started to fade, a part of me got stopped by people’s stare or lack of attention. I still said I liked writing, and I was still drawing. Then I started believing I had not enough talent. That art was for my sister who draw so well, my cousin whom my aunt was always praising. Not for me. I put myself in a box. I stopped everything.Only recently I started talking about my writing again. Not even investing much time in it. “Nobody’s interested anyway”. Only recently I started considering this space as a form of art. Not sharing it apart with very close people. “But nobody’s reading it anyway”. Only recently I started drawing again. Not really taking it seriously. “Nobody likes them anyway”.

I have some moments in which I wonder why I am doing this. If I am not wasting my time on silly dreams. But I don’t need to be Picasso or the next Pulitzer. I love creating. Any kind of creation. It doesn’t need to be “good enough”. As long as I create and it makes me feel good. As long as it makes me feel alive. As long as I am myself. Not doing it for people’s appreciation. But for myself. First. Creating myself, basically.

Create

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What Matters

#5 What matters to Pauline

I love meeting people. And having endless conversation. But I hate small talk. After watching a ted talk about how to avoid it I wrote the questions I wanted to ask every person I knew and meet in order to avoid the superficial discussion and bond with them. And I decided to ask them. Here are the answers.

Pauline is one of the first person I met when I moved town to study for my masters. I was standing in our school’s backyard wondering where I was supposed to go and this little woman popped in with a big smile, asked if I were lost, kissed me on both cheeks and introduced herself in a few seconds. This is how kind and genuine she is. She made me discover the fantastic Nirrimi, brought me back to running and made me realize how some people are deeply wonderful, artist and creative mind – she’s one, of course. Continue reading

Inspired on a Sunday #6

Sundays are for laziness and to be filled with what makes us feel good, full and alive.Sundays are made to be inspired.

I used to draw when I was a kid. I wanted to be a fashion designer. I gave up thinking I wasn’t good enough. But during the past year I went back to this form of expression. I even started an instagram account to share what I create. And this made me discovered wonderful artists. Inspiring people. And because I never took any drawing classes and learn by myself it teaches me a lot about colors, shapes, what is possible and what works. It opened my possibilities and everyday when I wander on my feed it feels me with ideas and will to experiment more!

One of the first artist I followed and I admire his work is Marc Martin ( @marcmartinillo on instagram), I wanted to share some of his drawings with you today.

 

 

 

 

 

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Volunteering, NGOs and helping the world disillusion

In this article I am not judging nor saying I have the answers or the solution. I am only sharing questions and remarks that came to my mind as I discovered everything is deeply linked. It is my personal journey and I am not saying you shouldn’t come or try to help. I’m just raising awareness on the complexity of the situation. My awareness first. And trying to share facts of my own experience. 

NGOI have been in Malawi for a little more than a year now and if it taught me a lot it also brought a lot of questions to my head. Questions about luck in life, destiny, fairness and… saving the world. To be perfectly honest when I said to my friends and family I was coming to Malawi they assumed straight away that I was going to give a hand to some NGO, as Malawi is one of the poorest countries in the world. But no, I came here for very selfish purposes and I was about to volunteer for a company. Bad me, I wasn’t going to teach kids in poor schools or help build a well. I was going to work – for free – for a company making money. And I felt slightly guilty about it. Considering I was staying in the poorest country I’ve ever visited. Shouldn’t I be spending my time really helping those in need instead of a company ?

My guilt quickly disappeared and within a year my view on NGO’s, volunteer’s and international organization’s work has changed. A lot.

To volunteer or not to volunteer? 

Continue reading

Inspired on a sunday #5

Sundays are for laziness and to be filled with what makes us feel good, full and alive.

Sundays are made to be inspired.

This video doesn’t make me fill good. But for sure it helped comforting my decisions of avoiding these fast fashion brands. For ethical reasons. To be honest I bought H&M products recently. Because it was cheap and quick. It was the first time I bought something in more than a year. Yes, living in a poor remote country forces you to review your shopping ambition. I had already done a good length of the way of reducing buys but it’s been more radical since I’m in Malawi. No shops, no money and… no “need” to buy. I am not missing it, and whenever I’m feeling down my answer isn’t shopping anymore. I realized how unfulfilling it was. And I am not less happy, no more as well. But travelling out of a (ok, two) backpack, since a year just simplified my life. And gave me a new lookout on our consumption society. This video confirmed my feeling, I thought you’d like to have a look.

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