Spectator, biodiversity researcher and "total addict" of the festival from 6 years (2014-2021).
On the eve of the 30th anniversary of the festival, I would like to share with you a "little" text that I wrote at the end of the 2020 edition, after 3 wonderful days of festival, always so qualitative. This text could have remained in the shadow of my hard drive, but the soul of this festival is in the sharing... so I take my courage in both hands to honor it in my own way. So I offer you this text, as a present that I leave you to appreciate - or not - as you wish!
I am an ordinary girl. I have a lot of dreams and a constant desire to travel and discover. But I'm not from a family of explorers, nor am I an outstanding scientist, or a talented photographer, let alone a top-level sportswoman... I'm none of these things, just an ordinary citizen who likes to live, dream and marvel. So, every year, I drink in the adventures of others, which this festival, to which I am attached - and assiduous! This festival, to which I am attached - and assiduous! -, brings it within my reach. For me, it has a slightly magical character, with its special atmosphere, the positive energy in the air, and the great adventurers that you can get so close to... And yet they always seem a little inaccessible to me. There's something extra about them, something that transcends them. They have an ease in living their dreams and overcoming obstacles, as if the reality of everyday life, which so easily catches us, the anonymous among the public, did not reach them, the adventurers who know how to stage themselves in such a humble way. I have admired them and worked with them for six years, and yet I never dared to take the microphone to ask questions that sometimes burned my lips. I have faced my shyness a few times to get a few autographs, though. I'm almost proud of it, that's how little I need!
I feel so small and insignificant compared to these men and women who live by exploits and strong, even extreme experiences. How do they do it? For me, the simple idea of taking the microphone and asking a question without stammering already seems insurmountable. And yet, every year, this desire takes hold of me. Every year, a little voice in my head whispers "I too would like to live a great adventure one day, one that transcends my existence, that makes me vibrate like them". Because even if everyday life is comfortable and pleasant, adventure is exhilarating and enriching. But not all of us have this easy access to adventure. Everyday life catches up with us so easily that it seems difficult to escape from it to reach the vibrant happiness of adventure.
And yet, if there is one thing I have learned from the speeches of the adventurers at the festival, it is that adventure is accessible to all. All you need is an idea, with a capital "I". The one that will germinate in our minds, cling to it like a mussel to its rock, and little by little take shape, until we find the solutions to overcome the obstacles, big and small, and find the courage to make it happen.
In reality, I am convinced that we all have adventures in our lives. They are not the same from one life to the next of course, but perhaps the big difference is in the recognition we give them. What if the adventure is actually hidden in the everyday? Then all we have to do is open our eyes and our consciousness to see it and give it the status it deserves. What if this is a key to happiness? Knowing how to recognise that what we experience has a value and that we too do beautiful things. And that we just have to honour them by giving them the value they deserve, the value of having filled us with happiness, even for a short time.
When I think about it, I too have had adventures in my life. But I don't think I've ever recognised them as such, because I've always considered them to be very personal experiences, which surely wouldn't be of interest to anyone but myself. And I had no idea how to tell them anyway. Maybe one day I will succeed in writing about these experiences, which have marked me and brought me joys but also difficult moments, to share them with others. And if I succeed, one day perhaps, this Festival will have largely contributed to this, through this enthusiasm and this beauty of sharing that it has carried for 30 years. This Festival to which I pay tribute today, and through it to adventurers, but also to ordinary people who, like me perhaps, dream of being adventurers one day and going through the looking glass.
So, thank you. Thank you for what you make us experience through the Festival.