It is perhaps when our lives are most problematic that we are likely to be most receptive to beautiful things. Our downhearted moments provide architecture and art with their best openings, for it is at such times that our hunger for their ideal qualities will be at its height. It is not those creatures with well-organised, uncluttered minds who will be most moved by the sight of a clean and empty room in which sunlight washes over a generous expanse of concrete and wood nor will it be the man with every confidence that his affairs are in order who will crave to live under--and perhaps even shed a tear over--the ceilings of a Robert Adam townhouse. p. 150
In 1900 the Japanese novelist Natsume Soseki travelled to England and there noted, with some surprise, how few of the things he found beautiful stirred the locals: 'I was once laughed at because I invited someone for a snow-viewing. At another time I described how deeply the feelings of Japanese are affected by the moon, and my listeners were only puzzled...I was invited to Scotland to stay at a palatial house. One day, when the master and I took a walk in the garden, I noted that the paths between the rows of trees were all thickly covered with moss. I offered a compliment, saying that these paths had magnificently acquired a look of age. Whereupon my host replied that he soon intended to get a gardener to scrape all this moss away." pp. 261-262.
--Alain de Botton, The Architecture of Happiness
|SCENES FROM MY HOME TILL MID-AUGUST|
SAFE TRAVELS, AARON AND JULIA