When doing my brisk walk every morning I keep my earphones on and listen to either good music or an inspirational message or sermon. Quite often I don’t take them off and as I sit in my garden later and sip my coffee I continue listening to what I’d put on.

Today I switched them off, and felt the gentle sound of the rustling leaves above my head, the deep throated cry of a strange bird that was also looking curiously down at me, and then felt the touch of friendly branches caressing my shoulders, and leaning across I sniffed their woody heady scents. 

There was such sense of peace.

These sounds and smells and sights were there everyday. It was just that I had not taken them in. Had never enjoyed the moment.

An Italian journalist, Renato Giuntini, once visited the great pianist Arthur Rubinstein. When leaving, the musician gave the journalist a box of his favourite cigars. “I’ll keep them all my life,” said the newspaperman.

 “Don’t,” replied Rubinstein. “You must smoke them my friend. These cigars are as exquisite as life. You don’t conserve life. You enjoy it to the full. There’s no joy without loving and enjoying the moment!”

Arthur Toscanini, the Italian conductor was celebrating his 80th birthday when a friend at the party asked his son, Walter, what his father considered as his most important achievement.

Walter replied, “For him there can be no such thing. Whatever he happens to be doing at the moment is the biggest thing in his life – whether it is conducting a symphony or peeling an orange!”

And here’s one for parents.

“The neighbours always buy their children solid ‘unbreakable’ toys,” said a woman to her friend, “so when I went for my Christmas shopping I was wondering whether I should do the same.”

“But my husband had other ideas; he wanted toys that our children could play with and even break. “They’ll love them,” he said. So we gave our children breakable toys.”

“And to tell you the truth,” the woman concluded, “I haven’t seen happier children!”

Luigi Tarisio was found dead one morning with nothing of comfort in his home except 246 violins which he had been collecting all his life. They were crammed in an attic. The best of the lot were found in the bottom drawer of an old rickety cupboard. He deprived the world of all that music those instruments could have produced while he hoarded and treasured them in his cupboard!

What do you and I do with precious moments?

Do we hoard them out of sight, keep them carefully like unbreakable toys or enjoy the moment by smelling the trees, enjoying the rustling wind, watching a child at play?

Do we watch a romping dog, exchange smiles with friends?

Enjoy the moment and break those breakable toys..!

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