The rounded life

Many years ago a friend of mine suggested that what one should aspire to is a rounded life. What she meant was that one should not only appreciate, or strive for the pink Champagne and caviar. One should embrace also the beauty of the mundane and should understand that a well-lived life contains both glittering balls and hoovering. One without the other would make the lived life unbalanced. I am ashamed to say that back then this perspective did not resonate completely with me. But with time I have become very conscious of the beauty of daily life. The people who invest more in the dinner jacket than in a well-designed kettle might have gotten things wrong. As my friend suggested it is a question of balance. There is a need and a time for the dinner jacket and there is a need and a time for the kettle. When billionaires are unhappy it is maybe sometimes because of the loss of roots in everyday life.

My book deals a lot with what it is that makes life worth living, and thus there is perhaps reason to reflect on why in my own life the mundane has become more appreciated now than when I was young. My youth in a small village in Denmark was overwhelmed by the mundane; the appearance of a new film in our village cinema was a major event. In such circumstances it is probably not strange that the pursuit of Champagne moments becomes dominant. But perhaps it is also not strange that after many years of much travel, and the intake of a considerable amount of Champagne, daily life becomes so attractive. Mind’s buffer containing much material means that daily life becomes a way to absorb all the impressions. Yet, again, the rounded life is the aspiration and that means that there is a time for the road and a time for the pleasures of home.

Publishing a book is obviously a Champagne moment – but I hope it is more than that. I hope publishing the book will stay with me as an element of contentment – will remain a notable element in my continuing quest for a rounded life!

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