Actually, it is not. I’m neither Fil nor have I earned a PhD. And I’m not a medical doctor, either. So why the nick? Both subscribers to this blog’ RSS feed already know the answer, but lately some inquiring minds wanted to know as well, so here it comes. The story of this blog wannabe.
Once upon a time… Having worked as a freelance translator throughout my studies, I realised that the work was simply too solitary an affair for me. I needed to get out there. This sentiment coupled with the idea that one needs a ‘real’, ‘full-time’ (ha! now that’s a joke considering the hours freelancers put in) job, encouraged me to explore other options.
I became a real estate agent and hold a license back in Slovenia. In complete contrast to my previous work, this job allowed me to talk to people all days long. What a wild ride! I met so many incredible people and heard countless life stories. Some nicer than others. Several of my clients turned into friends. One in particular.
This British guy was, for some reason, convinced that I should try blogging. Uh huh? I started reading some blogs and especially one blew me away. Said blogger has since become my grandson. Long story. Aaaaanyways. Actually make that two blogs. The first one written in Slovenian and the other one in English. Aaaaaaaanyways.
Just before I started commenting and posting on my own, I had moved temporarily to the Grand Duchy for the first time. During my stay I got to know so many wonderful people. One of them became my jogging-in-Bambesch partner. The beautiful surroundings and extra oxygen encouraged us to discuss all the truly important matters, ie. relationships. Inevitably, I would come up with a simple, clear-cut, no-bullshit solution. Which may well have been over-simplified and possibly wrong, but sounded good at the time and more often than not triggered laughter. Thinking back, it may have been the running-induced adrenaline, but who cares.
The way I ruthlessly kept cutting through the crap to point out the core of the problem reminded us somehow of the guy who became rather famous doing the same thing in better clothes and less of a perspiration issue, sitting in the studio of arguably the most influential US TV show hostess.
So there you go. Call me Fil. Dr. Fil.
Seemed like an OK enough nick to use in the blogosphere and it stuck.
The thing is, I like people. I really and truly do. Sure, I may forget that for a few seconds.. minutes… eg. when a jerk tries to jump queue (note: tries), roads are filled with cars operated by folks who should go back to driving school or when politicians play the card of nationalism. But basically, as far as I’m concerned, homo sapiens is the most fascinating creature of them all. What s/he can accomplish, the complexity of the psyche, the art s/he creates. Music! Love, hate, ambition, depression, thoughtfulness, recklessness. Dramas unfolding throughout the world, intertwined with the stories of other living creatures and the Earth herself, united in a single giant pulse in the Universe.
Anywhere I go, no matter how wondrous the nature or how impressive the man-made objects, nothing can touch me quite as deeply as people and their stories. You are beautiful.
PS: Dear mentor, I promise to start writing my MA thesis one of these days. Not sure about going for that PhD, though.
PPS: Chuchi insisted I add this: It is also true that when I travel, I miss my cats.
My legendary “teta Vida” laughing her heart out. Grandmother’s 87-year-old sister is a very special person, indeed, and I can’t wait to see her again. Soon.
Vse najboljše, babi!
This was the first photo I took with my Niki a year and a half ago, but my grandmother still looks exactly the same. It seems as if by magic, but she claims that it isn’t creams and lotions, but rather the work she does around the house, which keeps her in shape. She, does, however, love to use cosmetics and dress up. Never for the sake of others, but because it makes her feel good and because she deserves it. Way to go, babi!
Happy 88th! And many happy returns.
…and yet so close
all photos by dr. filomena
10.00 – 11.00: Meeting at Stari trg (Herkulov vodnjak – Hercule’s fountain)
-Music group “Sto prašičkov poje” (lit.: a hundred piglets sing)
11.00 – 12.00: Walk for Food Ljubljana ’08
Route: Stari trg (Herkulov vodnjak) – Mestni trg – Stritarjeva ulica – Tromostovje – Wolfova ulica – Kongresni trg – podhod pod Slovensko cesto – Plečnikov trg – preko Šubičeve ulice – Beethovnova ulica – Cankarjeva cesta – pod Tivolsko cesto – Jakopičevo sprehajališče – park Tivoli – pod Tivolsko cesto – Erjavčeva cesta – ploščad Maximarketa – ulica Josipine Turnograjske – Plečnikov trg – pod Slovensko cesto – Kongresni trg – Gosposka ulica – Kratka steza – Hribarjevo nabrežje – Čevljarski most – Gallusovo nabrežje – Stari trg (Herkulov vodnjak)
12.00 – 13.00: End of the Walk and a music programme featuring:
- rapper Nikolovski
- Joseph Rakotorahalahy, musician from Madagascar
- Tomo Križnar, human rights activist
Join in for a fun Sunday walk through the beautiful Ljubljana, at the same time helping raise money (and awareness) for a good purpose.
The last public message by Janez Drnovšek was on the meaning of life. The original in Slovenian was published by the Movement for Justice and Development (Gibanje za pravičnost in razvoj), established by himself.
What do we want from life?
Peace. And we look for the meaning of our existence.
Do we have to search for the meaning of our existence?
Of course. Have you perhaps found it?
Can we find the meaning of existence in the fulfilment of material desires?
Many people do.
But have they found their meaning?
They have found their meaning in meaninglessness.
Is fulfilment of material desires meaningless?
It is the desires that are meaningless.
But can we be devoid of desires?
If we have no desires and expectations, we are have no worries, either. We are at peace.
Is it enough to be at peace?
If we are at peace, we have found the meaning.
Is peace what we are looking for?
Peace is what we can find.
Is there anything other than peace that we can look for?
We can seek, but cannot find.
We can find success, money, power and fame.
But we lose our peace.
If we have all that, do we still need peace?
We need it even more.
But can we not find it afterwards?
Only if we are not attached to success, money, power and recognition.
It is difficult not to be attached to all of that!?
If we are attached, we are afraid of losing it all. And fear and worries create restlessness.
But is not everyone afraid or worried about one thing or another?
Only because they try to obtain or retain something.
We are afraid of death!?
Because we are attached to material existence.
But is not every existence material!?
It can be spiritual as well.
What is spiritual existence?
The one that transcends material existence.
How can it transcend it?
By transcending attachment.
Attachment to life itself as well?
Yes, attachment to life itself as well.
If we are not attached to life, are we then at peace?
Then we are at peace. We are not even afraid of death, much less of anything else.
Is this the purpose we are looking for?
This is the peace we are looking for. If we do not find it, we are the prisoners of fears and worries.
Does life with no material attachment have a sense to it?
Do fears and worries have a sense?
There has to be something other than peace that gives our lives a purpose!?
True. That is goodness.
We must do good. This gives our life a meaning.
Peace and good, then?
Peace and good.
Out of respect for the late Janez Drnovšek, this blog is painted in black today.
Let us reflect today on what is truly important in life and what it is that makes us human. A special person departed from his earthly existence, but great men leave a lasting impression and an impact that transcends time.