This past weekend I took off the Apple Watch down in favour of donning the Casio MW-240, simple quarts powered analogue watch. The simplicity of that watch was mirrored by every aspect of our weekend dwelling. We spent the weekend at a farm in Franschhoek, a small town famous for its wines and fine dining.
Unfortunately, due to the recent covid regulations, we could not explore any of the wine farms on the ever-popular wine tram or pay a visit to our favourite restaurant, La Petite Colombe, so we indulged in some slow living.
We spent the weekend in our gowns, smelling of Palo Santo and red wine, fireplace roaring in chorus with the rain. Clouds wrapping around the mountains and cascading down, almost kissing the ground, wrapped in throws with glasses of wine in tow. Every element of what made this stay magical can be replicated anywhere; candles in the right places, pleasant smells, warm meals, tea and a loved one. In reality, we need very little to feel content.
Hygge, pronounced ‘Hue-Guh’, is a Danish and Norwegian word for a mood of cosiness and comfortable conviviality with feelings of wellness and contentment. Hygge can be experienced at any moment; the soft and cosy feeling of a warm blanket, the sweet smell of honey in tea, a warm embrace from a friend. In fact, it is also speculated that hygge might originate from the word hug. Given the fast pace of modern-day life, we could all use moments of calm and comfort, moments of leisure injected throughout the day that helps us appreciate the moment.
When was the last time you listened to a song and did nothing else? Watched as the instruments danced around you and compelled your body to move. When was the last time you held a loved one and thought of nothing else? Feeling their bodies release all anxiety and tension. When last did you simply stand in the sun? Feeling the rays kiss your face.
Slow living is living in a more balanced, meaningful, and life-affirming way. Instead of waiting for an end of year vacation to experience relaxation, how could you inject that same energy into a Tuesday, perhaps a bath by candlelight? How about a midweek dinner with a loved one scored by relaxing and deep conversations.
Every new day is an opportunity to practise gratitude for the gift of life. If you slow down and take the score of all that surrounds, all those who surround you, you would realise how much of it was once on your Wishlist. So take a breath, sip your tea with intention and gratitude, and experience the beauty of this life you’ve built.