This book became a special read for 2 main reasons – friendship and inspiration.
My dearest friend loves “A Kis Herceg.” He had this book since he was a kid and Tita Lia had been reading it to him a lot of times while he was growing up. He knows the content by heart. I never knew this story until he read the book to me. He read it whenever we had time and we finished it in 3 days (Oct 29, Nov 3 and Nov 6).
Obviously, my friendship with Mr. Storyteller (his new pen name) took up a notch higher. And as I talk about my personal journey with this book, it comes hand in hand that I thank him for introducing this to me.
This became a favorite because, as he said it, “I felt like you are closer to me and reading this book to you made our friendship even more special.” I agree. I never saw him happy. Reminiscing his childhood days somehow transported me to the years when the only joy he knows was a book read from her mom.
No guy ever read me a book. Even my dad did not, he told me stories but not read. He made an effort to translate the content in Hungarian to English so I can understand it. I have added this to the things I admire about him. I am forever thankful to him for this experience. It made my eyes and my heart swell.
I finally bought the book and read it to my daughter. She loved it too – because of the drawings. She might not understand now what the story means but as she grows older I know she will.
And lastly, the valuable lessons I learned from the little Prince.
Drawing Number 1
I showed my masterpiece to the grown-ups, and asked them whether the drawing frightened them. But they answered: “Frighten? Why should any one be frightened by a hat?” My drawing was not a picture of a hat. It was a picture of a boa constrictor digesting an elephant.
I thought this was a hat too, until I took a closer look. I always believed that a person is born good until he proves it otherwise. That’s my belief, but I am not perfect. There were a few times I misjudged people because of how they look and most of the time I was wrong.
The grown-ups’ response, this time, was to advise me to lay aside my drawings of boa constrictors, whether from the inside or the outside, and devote myself instead to geography, history, arithmetic and grammar. That is why, at the age of six, I gave up what might have been a magnificent career as a painter.
As a parent, we want what’s best for our children. BEST, yes! Without knowing it, we dictate the future of our child. We choose what we think is best for them. I’ve met a lot of friends who finished Accounting because it was what their parents wanted for them. Are they happy about it? No! I want my child to know what she wants, work for it and I will be there to support her.
The little prince never let go of a question, once he had asked it.
Never stop asking until you get satisfied with the answer. It’s the same thing as never settle for anything less than what you deserve. I often tell my colleagues, especially those new to the company, to have the curiosity of a child. That’s the only way they can better understand the task assigned to them.
And for the person receiving the question, to have Patience. As a mom, I need more of this. I will be lying if I tell you that I never got mad with my daughter when she repeatedly asked a question. I did. And it is something that I am working on. This is my child’s way of learning about the world, and I don’t want to deprive her that.
“Draw me a sheep…” So I tossed off this drawing. “This is only his box. The sheep you asked for is inside…” “That is exactly the way I wanted it… Look! He has gone to sleep…”
The Prince can see trough an empty box a sleeping sheep. It just took a little bit of imagination. We all start at this point. We set our goals and imagine ourselves being there. When we start to imagine, we start to create, we start to work towards the realization of this goal. I just have started this in my life. Re-imagine myself to be in the place where I wanted to be a few years from now. And I am starting to work on it.
A baobab is something you will never, never be able to get rid of if you attend to it too late… And if the planet is too small, and the baobabs are too many, they split it in pieces…”It is a matter of discipline… there is no harm in putting off a piece of work until another day. But when it is a matter of baobabs, that always means catastrophe.”
Everyday we are faced with decisions. So learn to prioritize. I am not good at doing this. But, I am learning to sort things by matter of importance. I am learning.
The Inactive Volcano, The Rose and The Fox
“I have three volcanoes… and the other is extinct. But one never knows… extinct volcanoes may come to life again.”
Hope. It drives us. It keeps us going. It’s what I am holding on now.
“It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye.”…“It is the time you have wasted for your rose, that makes your rose so important… But you must not forget it. you become responsible, forever, for what you have tamed.”
Love.Friendship. The Prince tamed both the fox and the rose. I believe that love and friendship takes time to grow and needs continuous work to make it last.
There is more in the book but I only shared the one’s with greatest impact on me. I still have a long journey ahead and new experiences to learn from. As I move along, I will pick up this book from time to time and let the prince remind me of the valuable lessons he learned when he once crossed the earth.