This week, I am in Tinos, Greece. Not my first visit, but my first visit during the low season. The magic of this island is as strong as ever…
Fewer people make for stronger connections – those of us here really want to be here. The cooler temperatures make for new experiences – walking through the villages and heading to the Chora (town) more frequently. And the lessons of the island are as insightful as ever.
- Feeding the island cats feels like the day’s most important project. AKA taking care of others, with no expectation in return, makes me happy.
- Leaving the book I just devoured (The Last House Guest by Megan Miranda) in the unofficial “sidewalk book exchange” of Isternia village, and seeing it gone the next morning makes my whole day. AKA an act of random kindness for an unknown stranger, makes me happy.
- Going to the bank (inside the building, not the ATM) feels like an enlightening, welcoming, kind, human connection. AKA taking the time to enjoy every human interaction, even in the form of an “errand,” makes me happy.
- Slowing down and watching the sunset, grateful for nature and her rhythms, no matter the season, is good for the soul.
- Finally, as the Greeks say, “eteron ekateron.” AKA “it is neither here nor there.” And/or “it is said of two things that can both apply simultaneously, different from one another, without affecting one another.”
I know, I know, it is still summer for 10 more days. Yet in my heart, autumn has arrived. I love fall for so many reasons… the changing foliage, my birthday, sweaters, boots, pumpkins, richer moisturizers.
I also love fall because with it comes the feeling of a New Year – like the start of a New School Year, with all of the possibilities and opportunities (and new office supplies) that come with that feeling.
Here are my fall rituals.
1.Spring cleaning. I am purging old papers (and you know my love of paper), making room for new, embracing the feeling of lightness.
2. Goal setting. The arrival of fall is a reminder that there are only 110 days left in the calendar year. That’s 110 opportunities to check things off my list and accomplish what I set out to do January 1st.
3.(Mental) Space clearing. During fall, trees let go of their leaves, releasing the old, to make room for new buds. Following their example, I work to let go of something I no longer need, be it a feeling, an obligation, a regret.
4. Seed planting (not literally). Fall is a time of incubation… seeds of ideas planted now will bloom next spring. I make myself take time for creative thinking and brainstorming.
How do you celebrate the arrival of fall?
I love silence. But sometimes I need music.
Still Beyond by Leon Bridges. Beautiful, calm, inspiring, happy, in love.
212 by Azealia Banks. Obviously, I do not drive with children in my car.
Inspired at work
Blood & Tears by Joseph. All about hardship and persistence, it always gets me motivated.
When I need to get pumped for a meeting
Anything by Sia.
Getting ready for date night
Little Bird by Annie Lennox. Channeling Demi Moore and her blowdryer…
Summer is the time for barbeques, beaches, sundresses, and most of all sandals and flip flops, and even spending time barefoot. Our feet get to come out of closed shoes and show themselves… Indeed, I have spent the better part of the last ten days sans shoes as I am in Tinos, Greece, and am spending my days at the beach. I have a renewed appreciation for feet, often viewed as the lowliest part of our anatomy, and how essential it is to take good care of them.
Did you know:
- There are 52 bones in a pair of feet – almost one-quarter of the total number in the human body.
- Socrates once said, “When our feet hurt, we hurt all over.”
- The typical American woman owners 27 pairs of shoes, and spends $277 on shoes annually. (Although Carrie Bradshaw estimated she had spent $40,000 on shoes in a season four episode of Sex and the City…)
- The average shoe size of American women is 8.
- 23% of women get a monthly pedicure.
- And yes, feet rank #1 on the list of most common sexual fetishes.
(All data from Allure Magazine).
My foot care rituals include cuticle oil nightly (I love CND’s Solar Oil and SpaRitual’s Cuti-Cocktail Nail and Cuticle Oil), my Dry skin balm daily, and using a nice foot file weekly (SpaRitual’s Soul Mate Eco Foot File is the best). What are yours?
One of my biggest pleasures on vacation is the ability to read during the day for hours on end. I try to consume a book every day or two. Fiction, non-fiction, recently published books, older publications. Always paper books – no e-book for me, even though it does mean all of these traveled in my suitcase from DC to Tinos, via Geneva.
Here is my (very ambitious) reading list for this year’s time in Tinos.
Bad Blood by Jon Carreyrou. I have been fascinated by Elizabeth Holmes and Theranos for as long as I can remember, thinking of her as an example of what a woman entrepreneur can accomplish. Her company’s demise makes her all that more fascinating to me. And this book reads like fiction – and is the perfect example of reality being stranger (and more stressful!) than fiction.
Profits Aren’t Everything, They’re the Only Thing by George Cloutier. I have been meaning to read this for some time after my husband gave it to me as a reminder that while a company’s mission is everything, profits make the mission possible.
The Naked Truth by Leslie Morgan. This is our next Book Club book, a memoir of a woman in her 50s who gets divorced and decides to actively date for a year (aka have sex with five guys) to get over her sorrows.
Building a Great Business by Ari Weinszweig. Adam Ross, co-founder of Heyday, with whom I enjoy trading book recommendations, said this was the best book he read in 2018. “Unconventional, but awesome,” I believe were his exact words.
Le Prophète by Khalil Gibran. My sister Cyrille gave me this book (one of her personal favorites) last week. I guess she thought I needed to add something less prosaic than all my business books to my reading list…
What are you reading this summer?