By Ben Anson
HAVANA TIMES – It is a pleasure to be submitting another piece for this publication, after having been in hiding for quite a while now. One has found oneself engrossed in all sorts of personal affairs, from the demands of being a high school teacher to writing a first book, which I do of course, pray to be a success.
However, here I am once again, dear readers.
Today’s topic, shall run along the lines of inner and peace and happiness, we could say.
Honduras, is my special place. Those who’ve read my previous articles on here are well aware of this. Yet, as I almost always state, it is anything but a special place for the average Honduran.
“Nobody hates Honduras more than the Honduran,” I’ll tell people here upon hearing their complaints, opinions and if I may – ridiculous beliefs.
“Welcome to the third world,” a coworker told a US colleague and I on catching us at the bank one afternoon – after work. He was attempting to make jest of the large line of people outside the bank in question.
“You think people don’t have to line up in the first world, bruh?”
The last thing that your average Honduran desires, is to hear the truth concerning what they refer to as the first world, for quite obviously, it destroys their nice, little fantasy of the grass being greener on the other side.
“Sometimes people don’t want to hear the truth because they don’t want their illusions destroyed”, said Friedrich Nietzsche.
Even Friedrich would have been taken aback by the sheer, shameless reluctance to accept the truth here in Honduras.
I hail from Europe; born in Greece, raised mostly in England. I’ve lived in Spain as well and have set foot on most continents bar South America and Africa. Honduras, being the truly beautiful nation that it is, has become my chosen home.
Personally, I am delighted to watch those tiny, exotic hummingbirds flutter and dart around, or majestic eagles soar in the distance. Parrots squawk as they shoot past me on walking through the neighborhood – resplendent, dark-blue mountains across the background.
I am delighted to waste a day or two upon one of the Caribbean beaches, reveling in the gorgeously warm waters – rum in one hand, guffawing with my Garifuna bredas. I am delighted to waltz my way into a coffee shop and order some outstanding, local, fresh Honduran coffee.
Likewise, I am delighted to come to work and enjoy a good laugh with the students, who do, keep one feeling younger – truth be told. I am delighted to receive a phone call from close friends and acquaintances, whereupon we reminisce on bygone days in the barrio, where all sorts of madness occurred -great and soul-defining moments.
I see through the traps and ultimate emptiness of materialism.
I know the reality of Europe and North America; I am little impressed by big buildings and expensive cars, which seem to fuel the desire of so many here to immigrate.
“I don’t know why you came here, Ben, you’re from England”.
I’ve heard that line time and time again. Shame I don’t get a dollar every time it gets said, really…
One becomes isolated, the more one knows and understands.
Everything in life comes with a price.
Happiness, too. People will try and shit on it, steal it, dampen it, fuck with it, make a mockery, criticize, judge, etc. etc.
People here have absolutely zero idea of what life in England is like. One chuckles and allows the comments to disappear into thin air.
“Oh, you don’t know… that’s a shame. I was hoping you would… After all, I came to Honduras with the sole intention that you, yourself, would know what I was doing here”.
British sarcasm doesn’t travel though, such responses go clear over their heads, which is indeed why one deploys them.
I feel at peace. I feel calm. I feel myself to be on a path; a path that I myself chose and have defined step by step. I know what I’m doing, whereas they don’t. Everyone is following everyone, chasing Instagram photos, chasing cars that will indebt the purchaser and pollute the environment, chasing money in whatever soul-exchanging endeavor it may be.
All for the approval of others, others whom they don’t even like deep down. Fuck people. As harsh as it sounds. You have to say it once in a while. Steering clear and listening to your own thoughts is key.
“Turn off all outside noise” as the celebrated businessman Gary Vaynerchuk always says. Don’t pay attention – ‘do’ for you.
It feels good, knowing that you are the happiest soul at your place of work. It feels good, knowing that the higher powers blessed you with intelligence and perspective.
Do not seek what others seek, follow your heart but take your head with you, listen and act always on your most inner thoughts and desires. Life flies by like a speeding bullet, thus, it is of the utmost, sheep importance that we be who we truly want to be.
That, dear readers, is perhaps the ultimate meaning of this thing called life.
La vida es bella, aunque sea jodida papa.