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Never Stop Smiling!

I spent my last holiday in the Dominican Republic, in the beautiful Caribbean paradise, where I got to know a lot of locals. The thing that impressed me the most was a feature that I found in all of them: they smile a lot, even better, they are almost always smiling.

I wondered why, since for a person who, like me, comes close to that reality.
as a tourist, it immediately stands out. Speaking with many of them, I tried to give me an answer, to understand what is special about these Caribbean people: in short, how can they be so " light-heartedly" and "joyful."
Yet they do not belong, like us, to that lucky part of the world population that has much more than it could afford to have from Mother Earth. Of course, we know that if the resources of the our planet would be allocated in an equitable manner, we people of the West would not have so much in every way: we might not have so much food to waste, we could not even have water at will, heating and air conditioning systems in homes and places of work, or clothes at choice, easily reachable means of transportation to move, drugs and hospitals accessible to all, not to mention the coveted "superfluous."

The fact is that, although compared to these populations we have much more, we smile less.

Often we are indeed angry, snarling, ready to insult he who we just did wrong in the traffic, sometimes it also happens not to greet each other between neighbors. We have forgotten the dimension of the joke, of the game, of wonder, while instead we tend to never be happy with what we are and what we have and to always be ready to open the valve of the complaint.

While I was on vacation, it also happened to talk to some of them, who had become my friends, on what happens when we leave this world.
Their responses are still ringing in my mind: "When life ends and we find ourselves in front of the good Lord, what remains of our lives are really only two things: everything you have enjoyed in life and all the good you have done for the other, nothing else matters. "

And then they claimed their point of view about us: "You are so busy doing everything else that you waste your life. You spend as much time to criticize others, to complain, to worry about unnecessary things, to run to fix everything and always try to be perfect, but by doing so you miss the beauty of life. "

These words make me think still today. Of course, we can not upset our lives but we could learn to slow down and take things more calmly, to smile more, to be more grateful for all that we have and to be grateful to the wonderful nature that surrounds us and the people who have supported us in our black moments.

I think that living with a smile, even when we don't want to, is a precise action that we do that then bears fruit because there is no doubt that continuing to smile makes feel good us and the others, even if we do not have many reasons to smile.
But our Dominicans friends teach it us with their lives. We can begin to live with an other quality of life, a better one. Believe me, it truly is.

with affection,

"Never stop smiling, not even when you are sad, because you never know who might fall in love with your smile."
Gabriel Garcia Marquez