Richard Eyer Smith's Excellent Adventures in Paradise

Friday, April 27, 2012


This morning I watched an inspiring ten minute TED Talk by Louie Schwartzberg. Perhaps you've already seen it, as it's reputed to be the most popular TED Talk on YouTube.

After watching this amazing video, I couldn't help but think how easy it is to have a sense of gratitude when you live on a beautiful tropical island like Puerto Rico.

Sadly, there are plenty of places on this Earth where it is a real challenge to muster a sense of wonder. In the Sudan, for instance, I suspect that life is just too hard to devote much energy to ferreting out beauty, wisdom or a sense of awe. Many places - Syria, Afghanistan, Congo - are torn by war, famine or disease. Billions of our brothers and sisters on this planet are just too busy surviving to be grateful for the wonderful gift we share: life.

So, here's my new life's mission. I will awaken each day, brew some excellent Puerto Rican coffee, step out onto my balcony, look out at the azure sea or the emerald-green mountains and give thanks for this terrific place we all call home.

I'll send gratitude up to the heavens on behalf of all of us. I'll do it for those you who have other things to tend to. I'll do it on behalf of the Somali woman barely able to feed her child. I'll do it for the Pashtun warlord,  the Tibetan dissident and the Brazilian favelados.

Wow! This is a big goal I've set for myself - being grateful for billions of people. 

Too big, actually.

I'm going to need your help.

Here's what I'm asking you to do. If you are one of the lucky ones like me - one of the people who gets to spend a few minutes each day expressing your gratitude for the gifts you've been given - then send me a note on this blog. Tell me what you're most grateful for, what delightful gifts you've received, what makes your day so enticing.

Inspire me.

Knock me out with your gratitude.

Make me look like the Grinch of gratitude.

I dare you!

"Wake at dawn with a winged heart and give thanks for another day of loving."
Kahlil Gibran

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

we are blessed to live in a jewel toned island, emerald palms, fringed by pearl coastlines surrounded by turquoise seas. My gratitude is sharing all this with my soulmate of 35 years, paradise is appreciating all you have, who you share it with and taking time to realize it!