I’m reading a book called Shantaram that was recommended to me by my lovely friend back home. It has some amazing quotes and things I would love to share, but this one is magnificent. If you haven’t got a book to read, this one should be next. It’s dauntingly long, but don’t let that deter you. It’s fantastic!
She stood up, and I rose with her. Under the street lamp her green eyes were jewels of desire, wet with light. Her lips widened in a half-smile that was mine- a moment that was mine alone- and the beggar, my heart, began to hope and plead.
‘Tomorrow,’ she said, ‘when you go to Prabaker’s village, try to relax completely, and go with the experience. Just… let yourself go. Sometimes, in India, you have to surrender before you win.’
‘You’ve always got some wise advice, haven’t you?’ I said, laughing gently.
‘That’s not wise, Lin. I think wisdom is very over-rated. Wisdom is just cleverness, with all the guts kicked out of it. I’d rather be clever than wise, any day. Most of the wise people I know give me a headache, but I never met a clever man or woman I didn’t like. If I was giving wise advice- which I’m not- I’d say don’t get drunk, don’t spend all your money, and don’t fall in love with a pretty village girl. That would be wise. That’s the difference between clever and wise. I prefer to be clever, and that’s why I told you to surrender, when you get to the village, no matter what you find when you get there. Okay. I’m going. Come and see me when you get back. I look forward to it. I really do.’
She kissed my cheek, and turned away. I couldn’t obey the impulse to hold her in my arms and kiss her lips. I watched her walk, her dark silhouette a part of the night itself. Then she moved into the warm, yellow light near the door of her apartment, and it was as if my watching eyes had made her shadow come to life, as if my heart alone had painted her from the darkness with the light and colours of love. She turned once to see that I was watching her, before she softly closed and locked the door.
-Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts