Sometimes you pass through people in your life who leave a bit more imprint than others do; people who inspire or impress you. I’ve met many in my life, it would be odd if I hadn’t, but particularly a few have remained in my mind, maybe because what they did/was planning to do is so close to my own dreams and my own heart.
Allow yourself to get inspired by others!
I met 3 of them while in Granada, Spain on a 6 weeks intensive course in Spanish. The first one in my story is Marie, an American girl, a teacher, born and raised in France. She was part of some deviant form of the Christian church, today I can’t even remember which one – Baptism or something like that. Anyway, her church offered her to move to some remote village somewhere in Spain, to teach French.
Pack the bags and off to Spain!
Although she couldn’t speak one word Spanish, she didn’t see this as an obstacle. She packed her bags and took off to Spain, to spend 1 year learning Spanish.
Marie didn’t speak Spanish, but anybody could learn, right?
While telling me this story, I realised it was so obvious to her in some strange way, there was not the slightest doubt in her mind whether or not she actually could learn Spanish, but only a simple ”of course she could”. Many people stop just right there in that stage because they don’t believe they can do it, so they don’t even try.
Spanish teacher tried to make me doubt myself!

My Spanish teacher in Sweden tried to choke my translator dreams in front of the whole class by scornfully stating that translating was incredibly hard work, even for natives. That was the answer she gave me when I told the class why I was studying Spanish at university level. Marie didn’t doubt she could learn Spanish well enough for teaching Spanish kids French. I was deeply inspired.
Mylene from Quebec had a breakdown, and was now writing about it…
Girl no 2 was also in my Spanish course and her name was Mylene, and she came from Quebec, Canada. She was a couple of years older than me and had just been through a really bad break up with life in general. She stood there one day, successful with a well paid job and a husband – the whole deal (although no kids) and had a panic attack. Burned out – a fierce mental breakdown. Kind of like the one Elizabeth had in ”Eat, pray, love”. Her story was even longer and more fascinating than the few lines I’m telling here, obviously, so she was writing a book about her whole inner journey (and the outer one).
Mylene managed to get out of a bad situation and was now feeling extremely GREAT!
She did inspire me by getting out of a bad situation, where her life had more and more been centered around money and now when she finally followed her heart, she felt a whole heap better and saw life with completely different eyes.
I was actually Mylene, although I didn’t know it. And I wasn’t as successful either.
Without really understanding it I was in exactly the same position as Mylene was. I had a pretty well paid job, considering my lacking education, and my current boyfriend had just finished his education and had just started to climb up, up, up. His main objective had always been money and wealth; they also started to become mine during our years together. He never liked my freelance idea, since it required me not being permanently employed anywhere, but well, yeah, I never saw it as a problem. I actually believe that he was so shallow that that was one of the reasons he actually dumped me. I was simply too much of a boheme for him.
The old man invited me into his strange house, and I accepted.
Person no 3 was a man, whose name I’ve now forgotten. I was out walking. I’d just been up walking around Al’hambra. For all of you who have seen it – you know what I’m talking about. I love that kind of stuff – ruins, gigantique old buildings, everything. I can walk around for hours in places that usually makes other people bored.
8 hours in Machu Picchu was barely enough for me, I could’ve stayed forever.

After 2 hours, Susanne was sighing heavily up by the ruins of Machu Picchu and stated she’d be sipping coffee at the café, while I was out shooting around. 8 hours later I was ready.
Back on track, here…
Anyway, Granada. As I’ve already said, I was walking downhill from Al’hambra, and thought why not try out a new path today. It wasn’t exactly my first time up there. I went past an old man sitting outside his house on a small chair. He cheerfully ”helloed” my and I answered back and to my own amazement I stopped and asked about his wellbeing and started a conversation. Yes, I understand that even you, my readers, are in shock. But I kind of felt that this was a special old man, I guess. And he was.
The old man showed me how my own life could be
He was 65 years of age, originally from South America (if I remember correctly), but he now lived in Spain, Mexico and had a third house in another country I can’t remember, although I remember them being 3. He spoke 6 languages fluently, and was working as a freelancing translator. He invited me into his home, which was the coolest house I’ve ever seen. It was inside the mountain, and more like a carved out cave. Shocking for me to enter the house too – a complete strange man’s house. But well, I felt a connection, so it didn’t at all feel strange. He heard about my translator plans and thought it was a terrific idea, and an excellent choice. He had never regretted his choice of profession, and he pointed out he didn’t think I would either.
You don’t need a permanent place to live, and if you love travelling, which he also did, it is a wonderful profession.
These three people have inspired me a lot, and I still think about them from time to time whenever I feel down or suffocated, or simply when I just don’t have the energy. Then I get a little chippier and feel that this will be ok.
We all need someone to stimulate us, inspire us and impress us, but maybe it’s not that awesome photographer who always shoots the perfect images, but a real person whose road is more like your own, whose goals even you can achieve.
I do believe that you can reach and accomplish anything whatsoever, if you only believe enough in yourself to do it and if you’re willing to fight.
The sky’s the limit!