Dis Ekke

My vreugdes en frustrasies

A - Z (2018)

#AtoZchallenge (2018) S is for feeling Serene

My theme for this challenge is “feelings” of a sexagenarian and the influence of social media.

My tema vir hierdie uitdaging is “gevoelens” van ‘n sestig-plusser en die invloed van sosiale media.

English (Afrikaans below):

Serene: calm, peaceful and tranquil. Think Mona Lisa. Or maybe not. Think Jane Eyre, Lizzy in Pride and Prejudice or Elinor Dashwood in Sense and Sensibility. These ladies would never have been able to lower their standards to my level.

Serenity is not a feeling that I have ever experienced firsthand. Please remember that I am a woman of Africa. We are not serene and softly-spoken by nature. No, we are passionate about everything that we do, be it dancing, learning, playing or working. We have opinions about everything and we share them, loud and clear. We believe that people who whisper or talk quietly among themselves are usually gossiping and we do not like that; we want transparency in all our dealings, be it private or public.

We have a saying which literally translates to “still waters run deep and at the bottom the devil whirls around”, meaning that a quiet secretive person is perceived to have a cunning and deceitful nature.

All of the above is, of course, a generalisation (there are always the exceptions), but the description fits my personality like a glove. Now you know why my personal makeup lacks the serene demeanor of Jane, Lizzy and Elinor.

The role of social media: Social media opinions and statements tend to be either very open and honest (sometimes to the point of rudeness), or very misleading. The fact that there are no holy cows on social media can create an impression of transparency. Users must, however, be careful to distinguish between toxic and harmless information. Toxic information is the kind that upsets your equilibrium, steals away your tranquility and leaves you without peace of mind. This is also the kind of information that is most likely to be shouted out on all the social media platforms and stuffed down your throat. Today’s emoji: 😐

Afrikaans:

Rustig: kalm, rustig en stil. Dink Mona Lisa. Of dalk nie. Dink Jane Eyre, Lizzy in Pride and Prejudice of Elinor Dashwood in Sin en Sensibiliteit. Hierdie dames sou nooit hul standaarde op my vlak kon verlaag nie.

Rustigheid is nie ‘n gevoel wat ek al ooit eerstehands ervaar het nie. Onthou asseblief dat ek ‘n vrou van Afrika is. Ons is nie stil en saggeaard nie. Nee, ons is passievol oor alles wat ons doen, maak nie saak of ons besig is om te dans, leer, speel of werk nie. Ons het menings oor alles en ons deel dit hard en duidelik. Ons glo dat mense wat onder mekaar fluister of stilletjies praat gewoonlik skinder en ons hou nie daarvan nie; ons wil deursigtigheid in al ons daaglikse omgang hê, hetsy privaat of publiek.

Ons het ‘n gesegde “stille waters diepe grond, onder draai die duiwel rond”, wat beteken dat ‘n stil geheimsinnige persoon normaalweg daarvan verdink word dat hy/sy ‘n sluwe en bedrieglike geaardheid het.

Al bogenoemde is natuurlik ‘n veralgemening (daar is altyd die uitsonderings), maar die beskrywing pas my persoonlikheid soos ‘n handskoen. Nou weet jy hoekom die rustige houding van Jane, Lizzy en Elinor ontbreek in my persoonlike make-up.

Die rol van sosiale media: Sosiale media menings en stellings is geneig om óf baie oop en eerlik te wees (soms tot die punt van onbeskofdheid), of baie misleidend. Die feit dat daar geen heilige koeie op sosiale media is nie, kan ‘n indruk skep van deursigtigheid. Gebruikers moet egter versigtig wees om te onderskei tussen toksiese en onskadelike inligting. Toksiese inligting is die soort wat jou ewewig ontwrig, jou rustigheid steel en jou sonder gemoedsrus laat. Dit is ook die soort inligting wat waarskynlik op alle sosiale media-platforms uitgeskreeu en in jou keel afgedruk word. Emoji vir vandag: 😐

Read all my entries for the #AtoZchallenge (April 2018) here.

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30 Comments

  1. Gelukkig het ouderdom vir my meer rustigheid gebring.

    • HesterLeyNel

      Jy is gelukkig. Ek dink nie rustigheid is in my gene ingebou nie.

  2. I love this! I’ve never thought of Lizzy as serene, however. Mary, moreso. Lizzy has a fire in her belly, and speaks her mind plainly. But I love this perspective. I live in China, and we have struggled with the fact that everyone seems to be withholding information. I thought it was my American perspective, but maybe it is truly a unique Chinese trait!
    (information like, my husband will find out in the morning that his morning classes are cancelled. You know, not exactly small potatoes.)

    I’m visiting from AtoZ at Doesn’t Speak Klingon. I’ll be back to check out some of your other posts. Well-written!

    • HesterLeyNel

      Ah, but Lizzy was able to conceal her fire under a cloak of serenity; I do not possess that kind of self-control. I found you on Twitter (wordpress and blogspot are not happy blogging companions) and I will come visit your blog soon.

  3. I LOVE the ‘still water whirly devil line’ so much so I’ve copied the quote down!! You say not serene but I’d certainly describe you a calm lady :/

  4. ” I am a woman of Africa. We are not serene and softly-spoken by nature.” You are spot on – and all this time I thought it was my rural, plaas-meisie, upbringing! Love this.

    • HesterLeyNel

      😊 Thank you, Anne. Shame, my mom tried her best with her only daughter …

      • Mine too … not easy to be ‘ladylike’ with three boisterous brothers!

        • HesterLeyNel

          I also had three older brothers!

  5. And YES youngsters have to learn the difference between harmless honesty and toxic! Honesty can come back and bite you on the bum enough said lol.

  6. Ai Hester, en hier dog ek jy is so ‘n rustige mens by wie ek in fyn koppietjies kan gaan teedrink 😕 Die Pride and Prejudice era sou my ook nie gepas het nie…. al is ek ook hoe lief vir die boeke. Ek het so ‘n rustige, fyn koppietjie vriendin. Voel baie beskermend oor haar…. die wêreld lyk net te hard vir haar. Sy sê self sy is nie ‘n Afrika mens nie, sou graag in Engeland gebly het. Geniet jou seun se kuier 😊

    • HesterLeyNel

      Daar is drie foute in die eerste sin: ek is nie rustig nie, besit nie fyn koppietjies nie en ek glo amper nie hier is tee in my huis nie. Dankie, Oudste het vanoggend hier aangekom – ons kuier al klaar hard.

  7. Jy laat my altyd glimlag… maar my mond is styf toe.

  8. Nilanjana Bose

    Still waters run deep and the devil is at the bottom whirling around haha so pithy and apt!

    Have to confess serenity is a bit of a struggle this side too

  9. Ek is ‘n man van Afrika… die klomp hier dink ek’s ‘n grootbek… maar, hulle is verheerd… ek is reg! Wha ha haaa!! 😉

  10. People of our region are know for same – Loud and outspoken. 🙂

    Nice read. Serene.

    • HesterLeyNel

      Thank you for visiting and commenting.

  11. I love the word! I’d like to think that despite my passionate nature, and strongly opinions, I have an inner serenity. I am quite capable to looking someone in the eye, listening to she’s saying, muttering some possibly inarticulate response, and going back to my own business when she leaves, as though she was never there. Some might say it sounds like apathy. 😜😂

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