Do you know a beautiful person? Chances are you do. Well, beautiful people do not just happen...
Travelling in the wilds of Kakadu National Park, we met a couple, John and Patsy, from Victoria. Despite being a few years older than our parents, we instantly hit it off, and spent a wonderful few days together getting into all sorts of adventures on croc infested creeks (but that’s another story).
John had spent most of his childhood in an orphanage in London, his mother was alive, but just wasn’t very good at being a mother. She decided to emigrate (a £10 pom) when John was 13 and she took him with her. John by his own admission was emotionally neglected growing up, and as an adult never allowed himself to get attached to anything or anyone.
Meeting Patsy when he was in his forties changed his life...he learnt to trust and he learnt to love. We met them 20 years later. That was 10 years ago now. We only saw him twice in that 10 year period but we spoke on the phone quite often. He told us that he didn't get attached to many people but when he did he got very attached.
2 years ago John got cancer. Within a few months he knew it was terminal. He promptly sold his little beloved boat and sent us a cheque of the proceeds because we were so special to him (we later used that money to fly Patsy to Europe.....we felt that way we were doing John proud).
They have a palliative care system in Australia, where a biographer will visit you at your home and will write your life story as you tell it. That is what John did. We have a copy of his book/his story and it's a wonderful thing to remember him by and to understand him better.
Anyway, in the process of packing up our house to move, I found his book and before I put it in the storage box I decided to read it. When I came to the end of the story I turned to the last page....I'm not sure why I hadn't turned to that page before, but there on the page was a beautiful saying, that so perfectly summed up this amazing man...
"The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known loss, and found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity, and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern. Beautiful people do not just happen."
- Elisabeth Kubler-Ross
I have been fortunate to meet other beautiful people in my life, and when I do, I think of this saying. Beautiful people do not just happen.
Mimo - Real Camping Team
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