A forgotten world highway and Beates recipe of happiness

It is 6 am and I am awake. My legs are hurting a bit from the alpine crossing yesterday but it is not too bad so I am getting ready for the forgotten world highway and can’t wait to become part of it.

The scenery on the campsite is magical with all the fog around and so is the highway. It’s only me on the road and a few sheeps around and everywhere is the fog from that early morning and the sun is still trying to make her way through. The Te Marie walk is the first thing I am doing. 2 hours in a forest with a free hanging bridge and stunning nature and birds are welcoming me by getting their very best with making beautiful sounds.

After two hours of walking I am driving to Lauren’s Lavender Café. Drinking hot coffee, eating warm walnut date scones with cream and jam and enjoying the sun in her terrace which finally managed to get through the dust. It is 9 am and I am overwhelmed by the beauty of her farm and her kindness. After her husband gave me a huge sack full of fresh oranges from their garden I am continuing my ride into a landscape which couldn’t be more beautiful.

Green hills, cows and sheeps along the road and once in a while a farm where you get the image that time is standing still and that you become part of a novel and right now you are in the chapter where the happy end takes part and everyone lives together happily ever after 🙂

The road is narrow and with a lot of slopes. While listening to my Spotify hit list I have to overtake a farmer on his four wheeler who is managing together with his two dogs to get two huge bulls from one farm to the other. Not sure how to react to this he is waving me through and I am more than happy after passing that none of these bulls hit my car.

During the ride are several outlooks where you can stop and have a look. My favorite one was definitely the first where I climbed over a fence and walked right at the top of a hill. The cows weren’t sure about me as their new group member but I don’t care. Being here in top of the hill, surrounded by this lovely nature and the view couldn’t be better. Let me describe the feeling as a deep feeling of happiness, freedom and peace. The world with all its troubles seems far away and even my thought are no longer overtaking everything. It is just me and this moment and pure happiness in the middle of nowhere.

The road is narrow and with a lot of slopes. While listening to my Spotify hit list I have to overtake a farmer on his four wheeler who is managing together with his two dogs to get two huge bulls from one farm to the other. Not sure how to react to this he is waving me through and I am more than happy after passing that none of these bulls hit my car.

After the bull adventure on the road I had to pass a small tunnel, several one lane bridges and not to forget all the other outlooks where I stopped and the Mt Damper Waterfalls where I met three lovely ladies 🙂

The highway ends in Stratford, a town where all street names are from Shakespeare and there is literally nothing else to see 🙂 I am going to that one Café (everything else is closed because it is after 4 pm) and there she is – Beate.

Beate and her recipe of happiness

Beate is a women at the age of 55 to 60. Her hair lightly taps her shoulders and the color is something between light brown an blond but the blond part is actually caused by a few strands which should have been renewed by an hairdresser month ago. She is wearing a pink shirt with a cat on top, comfy pants and from her dirt under her nails you can tell that she might be a farmer girl.

Beate was born in Düsseldorf, but spent most of her life (28 years) in London with her partner whom she never married, because she describes herself as a Free Spirit.

Back in London she was a psychiatrist with good income and that kind of business women who spends her time with collecting knowledge rather than building up a family or just enjoying a sunny weekend at the sea.

And then her partner died. Beate was nothing more than a nervous wreck and as she told me couldn’t stay any longer in their apartment or even in London. 

One day a sentence from her partner came into her mind. He told her once: “Beate, whenever it comes to pigs you get this glow on your face. I don’t know what this is with you and the pigs but promise me one thing; one day you need to find out what that is with you and the pigs.”

Now it is her 6th year here in Stratford, she finally owns a tiny bit of land and a house with a garage in which she has her pet pigs. 
She is working part time but only enough to manage her bills, because she ran out of money years ago. Giving up a successful live in London and living here with her pigs is for her the fulfillment of happiness. From what I can tell you she is the happiest women I have ever met. 

Talking about her pigs really enlightens her and it seems to me that her whole world stops for a moment and there is nothing else than Beate and her pigs and money or bills doesn’t matter anymore. 

And she is the most happiest women from what I can tell. Whenever she was talking about her pigs she had this smile where your eyes sparkle and your whole world stops for a second. 

Having coffee with her and listening to her story was the perfect ending of my forgotten world highway trip. Back in the car I was asking myself: maybe we all should be a bit more like Beate from time to time. We don’t need to rush into that extreme life changing thing like she did, but maybe we should become more aware of what our heart tells us. Happiness isn’t about the perfect job or a big salary. It is more about listening to our deepest wishes and fears and our intrinsic motivation and maybe asking ourselves from time to time: if I had only one year to live, what would I do? 

I tell you one thing: you wouldn’t spend all your money in a casino, buying a villa or a fast sport car. You would call your beloved ones and ask them out for breakfast and coffee or whatever they wish just to spend time with them. And then you would start worth sipping yourself and book yourself the massage you really want during the last month but being too stingy. And you would take your time to read your favorite novel again or just booking the weekend trip to your favorite city which you actually planned to do for ages but didn’t have the time….

It’s not about the big things when it comes to happiness. It is more about the small things and our intrinsic motivation and why don’t we start today wth listening to it?

I wish I could tell you what my pigs are that are making me shine, but I am sure that this journey will take me to my pigs and let me know what really matters in life.

Yours Kristin


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