This is the fifteenth in our series of interviews to deepen the connections between all of us who love the sea and Sea Soul Blessings. And today, we’re interviewing Simone Ribeiro. Simone talks about growing up by the sea in Brazil, the simple joy of conversation, her love of Cornwall, and why her cat sometimes thinks she’s lost the plot…
Tell us a little bit about you:
My name is Simone, I’m 43 years old. I’m a Brazilian journalist and teacher (now with dual British citizenship) living in Birmingham, UK – where I’ve lived since 2011. I’m the founder of Midlands Traveller, a blog about business, travel and lifestyle.
What does nature, and the sea in particular, mean to you?
I was born in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, a city well-known for its gorgeous beaches and landscapes – and I’ve always felt a deep connection with the sea, ever since I was very young.
My family used to go to a beach resort in the city of Rio das Ostras, and that was like Paradise for me. We used to spend the whole day on the beach, and even the smell of the sand still brings back lovely memories from my childhood spent there.
Then, years later, I ended up living by the sea again – in Santos, São Paulo – also known as the home city of Pelé’s football team.
“For me, being by the sea is a healing, purifying and calming process.”
When I left Brazil, 10 years ago, I didn’t imagine that I’d ever find a place here in the UK that would bring me the same peaceful feeling. But I did – in Cornwall.
Despite living in the Midlands, Cornwall is definitely my favourite part of the country.
On my 40th birthday, my husband asked where I would most like to go, and I didn’t think twice – we went straight to Perranuthnoe, in search of the blessings and peace of mind that I can only find in the Cornish landscape.
How do you feel on a good day?
I am a hectic person by nature. So, when I’m having a good day, I will be very active, and a bit bonkers to be honest (lol). I will listen to music, and simple tasks like feeding the cat will be fun to me – the cat will probably think I’m a lunatic, poor thing.
How do you feel on a bad day?
I have bad days when I’m feeling ill. Most of the time, I don’t make a big deal of things, and try to be a very positive person.
If that doesn’t work, I try to be quiet, and to spend time in silence. That helps me to put myself back together.
However, I do confess that being so far away from my family – who live in Brazil – can make me a bit sad sometimes. So, on a bad day, I talk to them, and look for comfort in the fact that I can speak to them via social media every day.
Who or what is inspiring or influencing you right now?
Wow! It’s a difficult question. I have recently read Michelle Obama’s book, and my admiration for her has increased hugely. She definitely inspires me. I’m also loving watching You Tube videos from a monk called Coen. In Portuguese, it’s Monja Coen. I really recommend her talks.
“I’m honestly also inspired by every woman out there who is fighting for their rights and overcoming problems with courage and a kind soul. It might sound clichéd, but that’s what inspires me the most nowadays.”
What do you worry about on a typical day?
Money. Sad, I know. But as a freelance worker, I have to do my best to have enough money to pay the bills by the end of the month. The wellbeing of my family and husband is also something that keeps me alert every day.
Where do you find joy?
“I find joy in conversation with my husband. He’s my soulmate, and we have long conversations, even after having been together for nearly 15 years. He makes me laugh and that’s what keeps me happy. I also love to see my twin nieces on camera. They’re nearly six years old now, so you can imagine the joy: double (trouble).”
What do you love to do, read, watch or listen to?
I love walking in the countryside, travelling, and listening to music. Not a single day goes by in which I don’t listen to music. I do love chilled music. Or indie and progressive rock.
I also love studying languages and I’m currently (trying) to learn Japanese.
The book I’m currently reading is actually by a Japanese author – Goodbye, things – on minimalistic living by Fumio Sasaki.
What makes you cross?
Ignorance and prejudice. There’s no justification for remaining uninformed when we’re about to enter a new decade – in which there should be no room for intolerance. I also dislike selfishness. I’ll never understand why some people don’t want to share. Don’t they know that we are better together ?
How do you look after yourself?
I like to think I eat well. I usually don’t eat meat, and until a short time ago, I was a vegetarian.
I also like to be in touch with nature, and not to worry about problems that we can’t control. Wellbeing is a priority in my life, and I’m blessed to be surrounded by people who believe the same.
What would you most like to change about your life?
I think I would like to have more financial stability – and I’m working hard to make that a reality.
What have you learnt about life that you wish you’d understood earlier?
“I wish I’d understood that things happen for a reason. I used to panic too much when I was young – often, when things weren’t the way I wanted. I don’t believe in horoscopes, but some people would say that’s typical of an Aries – which is me (lol). In all situations, I like be in control, and it was difficult for me to learn that life doesn’t work like that.”
How would you describe Sea Soul Blessings in 3 words?
“Count your Blessings”. Is it okay to describe it in a sentence? 😉
How do you use your Sea Soul Blessings? What do they help you to change?
I usually use Sea Soul Blessings before going to bed, or in the morning, when I have time to relax and meditate.
It’s important to reflect on life now and then, and the cards and book provide words of wisdom that calm my soul in moments when I need direction – or I need an answer.
If someone was thinking about trying Sea Soul Blessings, how would you encourage them?
I would encourage them to have a completely mindful experience. Nowadays, it’s vital to keep your mind, body and soul in complete balance. Life is too short to waste time on things we can’t change. Let’s focus on improving ourselves instead.
To get yourself or those you love some Sea Soul Blessings, head here.
You might also enjoy the other interviews in the Sea Soul Community series so far: