Monday, January 21, 2008

Eat Pray Love by E. Gilbert – Not my Cup of Tea

Finally! After 3 months, I was able to finish this book. I'm sorry but I sort of lost interest right where she's treating herself with ice cream in Italy. I don't know, the review was great or maybe I was just paying attention to the promise of humor and of travel to Italy, India and Bali that I did not bother to find out what it is really about. Unfortunately it did not meet my expectations. This is of personal opinion and nothing else.

I have learned something from my daughter. Whenever we watch a movie, she would ask at the end, “What is the problem in the story and how was it solved?”. That is the way they were taught on how to appreciate any story. Any story would always have a problem and a solution. From then, I started to ask myself the same question after reading a book or watching a movie. It’s not just what it made me feel that matters anymore, it was also how the dilemma was resolved. This book made me laugh, that is good. I, however was not impressed when I saw what's behind the humor.

When I started to read this book and as I go in further and further, the problem started to form in my mind. This is about a woman who is struggling in a marriage because she does not want to have children. Struggling went to depression and then the divorce. Plus, an affair that did not help at all. She was totally blaming herself and in need of self-assurance in what ever form. She decided to go out into the world to renew herself. Being a writer, her boss has agreed to finance her travel only if a book can be written out of it. She first went to Italy to indulge herself with pasta and ice cream. Then she went to India to seek faith. She learned how to meditate and discovered yoga. Then she went to Bali and found love. A new love in one years time. Someone who, like her, does not need children and enjoy the luxury of travel.

As hard as I try, I can’t find any empathy towards the writer. The problem was really shallow and the solution is giving mixed ideas. She is indeed a very fortunate woman and quite a spoiled too. Not all divorcee can go out in the world and reinvent themselves. Most of them were forced to end their marriage because they were abused or mistreated. Most of them have children to think about even before they can think about themselves. Most of them are not lucky enough to have a job, much more a job that will finance all expenses traveling the world. If I’m a divorcee or have a problem that consumes me and I’m looking for answers, should I hop on a plane and go to Italy to gorge myself full? Journey the holy lands of India so I can find God? And then off to Bali because the answer is there? If i can't, does it mean that i'm doomed?!!

But I’m not as lucky as her or as spoiled. But then if I should take all of these as a big metaphor, then probably the basics would help. I would follow the same pattern. Step one is Eat, this does not mean gluttony but to take ones attention to oneself. Take care of yourself because no one will, give it nourishment and ask it to rest. Listen to it and make it stronger because it's all you have. You don't have to go as far as Italy to enjoy a spaghetti or an ice cream. Second step, Pray, - one does not have to go far to find faith. God is never too far, He’s forever near, you just have to let Him in. In the quietness of your mind (anywhere in the world, even in the noisiest part), you can let him in to your heart. Share your burden with Him and trust in His love. Third is Love --- this is the last… open your heart and let love come to you. You need not seek it to the ends of the Earth for it will come willingly and in full surrender in God’s time. This I think, makes more sense.


JTE said...

Is it possible to get a refund if a book bored a reader? Not money, but the time spent reading the book.

EM said...

Hi J,

I wish I can refund the $17 i paid. anyway, it's not worth spending more time on it. The surprising thing is, they are thinking of making a movie out of the story (Julia Roberts will take on the leading role)!

It's probably the humor they are after but really!

have agood day J