Here There and Everywhere

Expat wanderer

Favoring Co-ed Schools

Fascinating defense of integrated classrooms in today’s Arab Times, entitled Students Will Be Made More Comfortable under Co-ed written by Kuwait University student Dalal Nasser Al-Otaibi.

I learned how American Universities became co-ed, and why. (I had no idea; you grow up thinking these things are a given.) This article must have been used as a paper for a class, as it is well documented, cites sources, etc.

January 14, 2008 Posted by | Bureaucracy, Community, Education, ExPat Life, Family Issues, Friends & Friendship, Generational, Kuwait, Leadership, Living Conditions, News, Relationships, Spiritual, Women's Issues | 14 Comments

Well of Good Will

There are some days when ideas just come tumbling into my head, faster than I can write them, and days that I struggle to think of anything that interests me enough to write it up, much less interesting you, the reader. This is one of those days, and then, a flash! an inspiration!

I read so many other blogs dealing with betrayals in love and friendship, disappointment, personal relationships gone bad, and grudges carried forever. When I read them, I get the image of Gollum, from Lord of the Rings:


Gollum is one of the scariest characters ever created, because we know how close to Gollum we are. As he hunches over his “precious” ring, we hunch over our grudges, carrying them, petting them, talking to them, and as we cherish our hurt feelings, our anger, our resentment, our feelings of betrayal, we feed them, they grow, they take up more and more of our attention. We hide these grievances away, taking them out and petting them from time to time, outwardly looking normal, but, in time, wasting away spiritually while we focus on our “precious.”

I prefer to think of The Well of Good Will.

In a relationship, the longer you are in it, the more deposits you make into the well of good will. It is the little things you do in a relationship – how you hold the door when the other is carrying a package, how you bring a bowl of hot soup if they have a cold, how you pick up their meal when they are short of cash, how you listen when a friend has a problem, or remember to ask about their mother when she is having a bout of ill health. These tiny, consistent deposits into the well grow, they earn interest, they earn dividends, small as they are, they fill the well to the brim.

The well of good will never overflows, it just grows to hold the treasures of the relationship.

From time time time, circumstances will arise which require a withdrawal from the well of good will. We all have circumstances in which we become selfish, we strike, even at those who love us, because we are in pain. We all have times when we are tired and say something mean. We all have rough patches in our lives when we have nothing extra to add to the well of good will, and make sizeable withdrawals against the good will of those who love us.

Fortunately, all those prior deposits have earned interest, and it would take a long time for the well to run dry.

In relationships which have not existed long enough to build up that well, when a person disappoints you or betrays you, you are much likelier to just walk away. There isn’t enough history, there haven’t been enough deposits in the well to make such a sizable withdrawal. We say “shake the dust from your feet”, it’s just another way of saying “move on.” Walk away from a bad investment. Don’t look back. Just move on.

If, like the Gollem, you focus on those losses, if you carry around your resentments and grudges as if they were something precious, you starve the well of good will. If you choose to nourish your anger, you neglect your well of good will. We carry negative energy at great cost, cost to our body, minds and to our spirits.

Choose, instead, to focus your investments in the well of good will, doing good even when you don’t see the rate of return. An investment in doing good, in doing the right thing, is an investment in yourself, in your spirit, in your character, reaping dividends in peace, serenity, calmness and good cheer.

January 14, 2008 Posted by | Family Issues, Friends & Friendship, Marriage, Random Musings, Relationships, Spiritual | 13 Comments