Life, Spoiler Alert!

In defence of melancholy (when consumed with caution) Life is more enjoyable when taken seriously. -Christian de Nogales, Psychiatrist We had agreed to meet for lunch at the Bains des Pâquis, Geneva’s city beach, a perfect destination on a sunny day. “It’s raining; where shall we go?” Helena texts me. “Let’s go there in spite of…

By the river I met my future self

No man ever steps in the same river twice, for it’s not the same river and he’s not the same man. — Heraclitus (6th Century B.C.) Walking along the Aare river I stop to see the water flow And think of Heraclitus’ dictum Ahead of me I spot a woman Wait, is that me? Same…

7 Steps to Declutter Your Wordrobe

To Marie Kondo, a woman of few words This exercise will help you let go of words that no longer serve you, create space for new ones, and offer you a new wordrobe that best reflects your current self. A word of advice: the exercise is planned for three days, yet depending on the size of your wordrobe,…

Que no acabe así

en la bici, camino al trabajo, me asalta un pensamiento podríamos morir en este instante en este radiante día de invierno antes de que la rueda de otra vuelta aplastados por su furia como cáscaras de huevo nuestras vidas en sus manos su cabeza llena de demonios como en aquel entonces, pero peor en el…

What our children ask about (this) war, what we respond

Thanks to all the children and adults who shared their thoughts with me. Although children in Switzerland are far removed from the combat zone, many know a war is raging in Europe. What are they asking? What are we, adults, answering? What can we do to help them? Seven-year-old Victoria raises her hand at the…

Before the bullied boy becomes a killer

A megalomaniac with a nuclear arsenal holds Europe in his hand. How and when did this bullied boy become the global threat he is? Despite some progress, emotional education is still not given the importance it deserves. It is rarely considered a teachable subject in schools. And at the workplace, people seldom address emotions. Even…

Let it not end here

As I bike to work a thought overtakes me We could all die now On this gorgeous winter day Before the wheel completes one more turn Crushed by his angry, mighty blow Like eggshell Our lives in his hands His head full of demons Like then, only worse At the red light a child in…

A Child vs Switzerland

In September 2021, the Committee on the Rights of the Child found Switzerland’s decision to expel a Syrian mother and her stateless child in violation of ten articles of the convention. “… the strength of a people is measured by the well-being of its weakest members” -Federal Constitution of the Swiss Confederation, Preamble[1] “I recently won…

The Motherhood Decision

Abstract: An unexpected encounter between two dogs resulted in four gorgeous puppies and plunged me, owner of the bitch, into a deep reflection about the decision to become a mother. This text aims to be funny yet deep, honest and thought-provoking. It moves from the dog to the dog owner, questioning whether the act of…

Away from the shopping frenzy

I couldn’t go to the mall The crowded shops terrorise me Instead, I walk into the solace of nature And in the roar of silent snow, Surrounded by total whiteness I catch my breath and calm my mind And I know that I love you I will wrap this certitude in Christmas paper

You’re not in prison when you’re on stage

“The mission of the theatre, after all, is to change, to raise the consciousness of people to their human possibilities.” Arthur Miller Last Saturday, I had the rare privilege of watching a theatre play inside a prison, Hindelbank, close to Bern. During an hour, a packed audience saw seven incarcerated women on stage offer fireworks…

The ‘Art’ of Conferences

For Greta, the noblest one Warning: Politically incorrect, satirical text. Often, when invited to speak at a conference or join a panel, I’ve had the impression that the organizers wanted to add something feminine, preferably nice-looking, in the same way, that you’d add a flower arrangement on a set table, a final touch. A recent incident…

Their Lives

I never thought the pain would be physical Like a hole next to my heart Or is it here, close to the gut? ¿En las entrañas? (I never cared much for anatomy) So many years busy being parents Groceries to buy, forms to fill, meals to cook So much running around We were getting good…

Cuando tu apellido es Escobar

Me volvió a suceder ayer. Me habían invitado a dar una conferencia sobre gestión de impactos en una escuela de negocios de Ginebra (Suiza), donde vivo. Tras la sesión, uno de los estudiantes se acercó a mí y, con una sonrisa pícara, me preguntó si era pariente de Pablo Escobar. “Vuelve y juega”, pensé. En…