The monk, the mountains and Ebay…

Meg Dyos By

There was once a traveller who was walking from a village in the mountains to a village in the valley.

As he walked along, he saw a monk working in a field, so he stopped and said to the monk, “I’m on my way to the village in the valley, can you tell me what it’s like?”

The monk looked up from his labour and asked the man where he had come from.

The man responded, “I have come from the village in the mountains.”

“What was that like?”  the monk asked.

“Terrible!”  the man exclaimed, “no-one spoke my language, I had to sleep on a dirt floor in one of their houses, they fed me some sort of stew that had yak or dog or both in it and the weather was atrocious.”

“Then I think that you will find that the village in the valley is much the same,” the monk noted.

A few hours later another traveller passed by and he said to the monk, “I am on my way to the village in the valley, can you tell what it’s like?”

“Where have you come from?” enquired the monk.

“I have come from the village in the mountains.” 

“And what was that like?”

“It was awesome!” the man replied, “No-one spoke my language so we had to communicate using our hands and facial expressions.  I had to sleep on the dirt floor which was really cool as I’ve never done that before.  They fed me some sort of weird stew and I have no idea what was in it but just to experience how the locals lived was great and the weather was freezing cold, which meant that I really got a taste of the local conditions.  It was one of the best experiences of my life.”

“Then I think that you’ll find that the village in the valley is much the same,” responded the monk.

Life is 10% what happens to us and 90% how we respond.  Don’t allow the challenges of life to take away your joy. 

There are lots of reasons to complain and be miserable if that’s how you look at life.

There are lots of reasons to be enthusiastic and joyful if that’s how you look at life.

How do you look at life?

I got sent this story when we were rowing, and it really made me smile. It’s also a question from the past week that I have been thinking about, as I attend job interviews and continue to contemplate my career prospects – life is good, and I cannot tell you how much I am enjoying wearing socks and drinking tea.  On the other hand, I am still missing my sunset bucket sessions and the heat of the sunshine on my back.

Update: This week I got promoted to an Ebay seller that can now sell 30 items a month instead of 10! I’m so proud of myself I had to share it with you all.



  1. Cool blog Meg I liked the story a lot, it does make you think, I bet it’s still kinda strange being back, I love travelling so this story makes me think about travelling again, Might we get to peruse any lovely photographs from your Pacific crossing?

    Congrats on the eBay promotion I’ll have to check you out, erm that sounds weird I didn’t mean to say it like that, but I hope you know what I mean :\

  2. Good luck with the job hunting Meg. You will be a great asset to some lucky employer.

  3. Barry Haeger says:

    Great blog.

    Life is indeed what you make of it and the perspective to which you bring.

    Positive or negative you won’t be wrong and we must never forget the we live in the experience of the reality we make for ourselves. This has echoes of the much quoted (and oft misquoted) saying of Henry Ford “If you think you can or you think you can’t: you’re probably right”

    I’ve just spent 3 days with 50 entrepreneurs with who this would have so mush resonance as the conversation revolved around the 80/20 rule and its multiplicity of application. 20% of people will self-select to move forward and 80% to self limit themselves.

    And of the 20 percenters that move forward only 20% of them will truly aspire to greatness while 80% of the 20 percenters. I’m sure all 6 of you have already proved your selves toi be 20 precentres so think of those stars in the dark pacific night and aim for them and truly become one of them!

  4. Judith Mills says:

    Love the story Meg. It is very true that how you approach life makes all the difference not only to yourself but those around you.
    It is great to still have blogs from you all and to hear how life back on land is going. Think of you all often, glad to know that Lisanne will be with you all before too long and that Doris is on her way.
    Good luck with the job hunting. What a great asset you will be to any employer. xx

Leave A Reply