Ever since I was a kid I imagined what it could have been like growing up on an unspoiled island in a faraway land. I couldn’t perceive a more perfect life, filled with freedom, independence and adventure mixed with some healthy portions of danger and fright. I could see myself running around naked beaches, climbing up bare trees, and merging with mother nature. To me, this meant ultimate happiness.
As I grew older – atleast physically – I was forced to swallow a more cynical view of the world. Nature has been argued to hold a dark side, simplicity was shown to have weaknesses and I was made to believe I would need more in life than just beaches and nature. True happiness, the main modern argument goes, is more complex than that naive childish view.
Perhaps, I’m not sure, but over the course of my recent visit to the small island of Siquijor at the Philippines’ Visayas I saw nothing but happiness in almost all of the local kids.
Across all ages they were independent, open-minded, curious, confident, with remarkable amounts of energy, a strong sense of humor and a huge smile that only rarely was switched off to rest.
After watching them for a couple of days, I couldn’t help myself anymore. I took my camera, came in closer and started to take photos. You can’t find a more welcoming and friendly bunch…
Makes you look at the world from a whole new perspective, doesn’t it?