24/09/2013

Envy




























































People are ready to confess to a multitude of sins: I've heard friends admitting to acting, thinking or feeling selfish, narrow-minded, cold-hearted. The one sentiment that no one ever wants to own up to, for some reason, is envy. The beast, the green monster. Apparently, it's the most shameful feeling a human being           can possibly experience.



There's a street close to where we live, a short little road that I take every time I walk to the tube. There's a tiny park in the middle of it and a pub on the corner. This tree-lined little angle of London hosts some of the most beautiful flats I have ever seen: classical Victorian London houses, red and blue doors, two-floor flats with a loft feel, lots of air and light. And a spacious back garden.

Every time I walk by, I can't help but peeking inside those cosy windows, admiring the perfectly designed modern kitchens, the soft, inviting sofas with colourful cushions strewn over them, the wooden floors - no disgusting brown carpets here. And that light. Always, that soft, subdued London light.

Today, I walked by and stole a peek again - this time I saw a man working on his computer in front of a huge window. He was looking out over a lush green garden with that light pouring in.

Next door, a few builders were working on another house just like it. I stopped and had a look at the unfinished room, imagining the people that were moving in there, the people that had bought this house for £1,225.000 (yes, I checked). This was their house, their life. They would wake up with the sunlight streaming in through those windows. They'd have June breakfasts on the terrace in that garden. They'd close that red door behind them and skip down the steps toward the park. I wondered who they were and how they had ended up there. 

I kept on walking, my steps a bit heavier, my mind a bit more clouded. I don't like it when, as I express my envy, people counter with, "well, maybe they're fat and sick and lonely". Why should they be? I marvel at the insecurity of humanity: why we're so quick to find alleged misery in what's apparently perfect? I wish that these people are healthy and loved and blissfully happy. Everyone deserves to be.

It's just that, until a while ago, walking down this street made me feel hopeful. It made me envision a red door, a garden-facing window, a cushion-filled sofa of my own. It made me imagine the future David and I could have together. These days, walking down this street makes my mind fill up with thoughts of obstacles, difficulties, hurdles. It makes me question if it's true that the world is made up of people that can and people that can't. And maybe my envy is based on a niggling doubt in my mind regarding to which category I belong to.

11 comments:

  1. Hi Sascha! Welcome back from your trip, btw! Loooved the beautiful pictures. I've been too busy (new job, school) to read and comment as much as I like on my favorite blogs (yours is definitely one!) But I just have to jump in and comment on this post. You always write on topics that resonate with me!!

    FYI, I know I'm lucky in areas and unlucky in others. Probability-wise, only a few in the world can "have it all" (aka scarcity). It's usually not entirely random who does, and it's not always fair who ends up having it all. But living my life of NOT having-it-all has trained me to negotiate sense, modesty, acceptance, and even gratitude with myself. Otherwise, we suffer the double whammy of NOT having-it-all, AND compounded by being MISERABLE about it. At least the latter we can attempt to control :-)

    PS. my new job is with a competitor of Squarespace. I like Squarespace a lot! Unfortunately, I don't work on the developer end. I'm more on the marketing/data analytics side, or I'd find some way to contribute to your magazine :-)

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    1. Thanks Yanmin, I like your comment. Congrats on your new job!

      I guess what really bothers me isn't the fact that I don't have the actual house, it's the fact that sometimes I feel like I've stopped believing that I ever will, you know? It's losing the dream that saddens me. I'm having a hard time visualising my dreams coming true like I did before. Even if they do, lots of them do! I don't really believe in "having it all" - what is "it all"? I guess it's different for everyone. But I'm losing belief in even the smallest things. At least sometimes.

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    2. *****hugs***** I left out a *big* caveat to having a practical and sensible perspective of acceptance and gratitude. I think a Great joy in living is to *dreeeeeeeeam*. Literally, we go insane without it!
      So you should definitely dream on, so that if and when you achieve any of your dreams, you know to be all the more appreciative of all of it :-) I'm sure there's an adage some where that says it's the dreams that do come true *cough Vilda* that matters most!

      Keep dreaming and I look forward to reading Vilda updates!

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  2. Keep visualising yourself in one of those houses and one day you may just get one :)

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    1. hmm, don't think so. Did you see how much it costs?

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  3. Ti capisco. Anch'io ho provato più volte questa sensazione.
    Mi ricordo bene quando vivevo in California, a OC, che c'erano queste ville da milioni e milioni di dollari, in tenute private, con il giardino, la piscina, la spiaggia privata...Lussi e comodità in versione extralarge che io non sapevo nemmeno che esistessero!!!

    Non credo che un giorno, così dal nulla, ci ritroveremo a vivere in una casa del genere solo per il fatto di averlo "creduto o visualizzato". Ma sono convinta che la soluzione sia dentro di noi e arriverà quel giorno in cui saremo nella casa dei nostri sogni, come ce la siamo immaginata. Magari non sarà una villa con il giardino privato e il terrazzo sul mare, ma sarà una dimora carina, dignitosa, dove tu e David avrete un bel parquet di legno, lui avrà una stanza per le sue chitarre e tu un ufficio tuo con le scarpe, lo specchio, dove poter scrivere sorseggiando caffe...E allora, in quel momento, penserai di avere realizzato un desiderio e non ci sarà più posto o spazio per l'invidia verso quella casa che ora ti fermi a guardare...
    :-)

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    1. Grazie per le tue parole. Peró attenzione, io non mi riferisco a superville. Detto cosí sembro una viziata che abita nella cittá piú bella del mondo e si lamenta che non c'ha pure il giardino privato. NO.

      Io intendevo il LUSSO di avere una casa tutta nostra, non condivisa, cinquanta metriquadri tutti nostri, senza altra gente, senza la moquette disgustosa, senza fare attenzione se il bagno é occupato, senza vergognarmi quando parlo con persone fuori Londra di come e dove vivo.

      E la cosa brutta é che ho un po' smesso di credere in un futuro quando noi avremo una casa cosí. Ultimamente stiamo vedendo soluzioni sempre UK ma fuori Londra, perché i prezzi degli affitti qui mi fanno piangere...!

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  4. Hummmm this is a tricky one for me to answer because I just don't think I know the answer :/ Are there people who can't and those who can't? Probably. You know that they say that the majority of people live up to or beyond their means, so I bet some of those folks although they love their light strewn wooden floored Victorian dream abodes, they probably have other streets which they walk down wishing they had that amazing Georgian townhouse but they just can't afford it. We 'believe' we would love to be living in that £1.2million pound pad but remember you will be living surrounded by others who can afford to live in their £1.2million pound pads and they aren't necessarily the people you would particularly want to surround yourself with. Does that make sense? I long, one day, to live in a period property in a village but ultimately I know what small village mentality can be like and I don't necessarily like it. I pine only for the gorgeous craftsmanship of a period property with the large garden and the room to hear the birds sing BUT I know that is really a dream as there is always going to be a neighbour to contend with that I don't gel with. There is no reason that one day you won't have a gorgeous light filled stylish red doored abode, but it doesn't necessarily have to be in London...

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    1. But I want to be in London. It's my number one favourite city in the world and I gave up a lot to be here. I work six days a week and sometimes into the night, so the fact that I can't even afford a studio flat does make me just a tiny bit envious of people that think nothing of living in gorgeous two-bedroom flats with wooden floors and huge dinner tables where friends can gather and fireplaces and comfy couches. I just think that people that are lucky enough to have that should never underestimate it.

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    2. ...and the part that saddens me is that I've kind of stopped believing that one day I'll have a flat of my own. I can actually see us coming back to the flatshare from our honeymoon. And it's a bit depressing.

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