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Hector is a young psychiatrist in Paris who does not understand why his patients in this most beautiful of cities are unhappy. So he decides to take a trip around the world–from Paris to China to Africa to the United States–and to keep a list of observations about the people he meets, hoping to find the secret to happiness.

I love the book Hector and the Search For Happiness by François Lelord. I think this is probably my favorite book of all time. I couldn’t put it down when I first read it. Well, it’s not a terribly long book, so it wasn’t hard to tear through the pages in a few short days (if you broke up the reading sessions into small chunks of time.)

I have certainly recommended this book to a few people since I’ve read it. I really like the story line of this book, about a well-liked, yet seemingly unhappy psychiatrist who goes on a personal journey to discover the meaning of happiness (What is it, & how do you achieve/obtain it?). Throughout the story, The main character Hector meets many interesting people, goes on a few adventures, & keeps a notebook with a list of points he writes down of what makes up the meaning of happiness.

After reading this book, I re-read the points of what makes up the meaning of happiness to see if I could draw any similarities to my own meaning of happiness. Little did I realize that I already followed this list of points. That made me happy.

Recently, I found out that this favorite book of mine had been turned into a movie starring actors Simon Pegg as the title character Hector & Rosamund Pike as Clara (Hector’s great love/girlfriend). I was completely over the moon to find these two actors starring in this movie. I’ve loved them in all the other movies they’ve acted in together (eg. Shaun of the Dead, The World’s End).

I really think this movie was nicely cast…however, I just can’t get over seeing Simon Pegg with so much hair. It’s really making me do a double take every time I watch the trailer or see photos from the movie. Ok, hairstyle aside, I can’t wait to finally watch the movie adaptation of my favorite book. From the reviews I’ve been reading on the Internet, I am going to be happy once more. Cheers!

All movie photo credits go to Relativity Media.

Today’s song of the day:

I often think about these things when I travel.

Life After Liquidity

Travel Cover

As I write this post I am sitting in the Caltrain, passing through various suburbs of the San Francisco Bay peninsula on my way to the city. It’s comforting to be surrounded by so many familiar sites once again.

My wife and I have had quite a journey: 17 countries, dozens of cities, and countless airports/train stations/bus stations. We’ve witnessed both staggeringly beautiful phenomena (Northern Lights in the Yukon Territories) and horrifying moments (a mob beating up some dude in the streets of Istanbul) along the way. Fortunately, my wife and I came out the other end of our trip completely safe and with a lifetime of memories.

I’ve delayed writing this post as long as I could; it’s been taking me a while to process what I’ve learned from this trip. The short answer is: a lot.

I may not be able to cover all the lessons I’ve learned…

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The following is a scientific and personal article written by CAH member Troy Campbell about happiness. One lovely afternoon, I began chatting to my grandpa. I was completely unaware he was about to say something that would change my view of happiness forever.


September 2014

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