"Yes, this is my boss, who died in 1837" :)

Updated: Apr 10

"Passion is energy. Feel the power that comes from focusing on what excites you." - Oprah Winfrey

It was a beautiful winter day after lockdown - the air was fresh and the sun decided to bless the city today. The clouds made room for the blue sky, and I always love to see the big blue horizon. It was early morning when my alarm rang - 7am. I booked brunch at a popular Italian restaurant with beautiful decoration (yes, another Instagram spot), and needed to catch my bus (as a way of my new cost conscious lifestyle). This morning I managed to complete my morning routine, which consists of 30min meditation, journaling, and quote reading. I love it when I have time to nourish my soul before the day starts.


Out on the street, I was afraid to miss my bus and lose my reservation, although during Corona it may be something not to be too worried about. First people already chilled outside a coffee store (its funny name is "FUCKOFFEE") and you could breathe the breeze of an early morning day. I was approaching the bus station and recognized a cute guy. I quickly turned my eyes away - this habit is something I definitely need to work on if I want to meet someone and make a sign to the Universe! I loved the bus ride - it brings me among all diverse people London has to offer. Young, old, white, yellow, black - even with social distancing and seeing only half of people`s faces, I tried to signal that I see them ("Namaste!").

I start getting used to take the bus, while listening to music. My brunch at the Italian restaurant was surprisingly amazing, but service a bit disappointing. Not sure whether they did not take me seriously because I was there by myself. I am very proud of myself that I am comfortable sitting alone at a restaurant. First, in London, you often realize people don`t care and judge (so it is often what you think others think in your head). And second, I just love it, either to spend time with myself or spend time with the right people. I am probably the last one asking a distant fellow to meet up if I know I would leave this meeting drained rather than empowered. And what I usually do is note down my reflections and observations (this time about my passion), do admin (this time my Instagram daily advent calendar series), or read my Kindle (this time about Invisible Women).


After nourishing my body, I headed to the Sir John Soane`s Museum. I didn`t know anything about him or the museum, I only saw that this museum seemed to be very popular (in fact I had to book this slot before lockdown). When I got there, the staff told us that because the museum is an actual house from the 18th century, there are no signages along any pictures. But we can approach the employees per room for more information. I soon called the website on my mobile to familiarize myself with what I had signed up for, and soon was intrigued, esp. when I entered the first room of the house, which was used to receive and dine with guests.

Sir John Soane was a renowned architect, famous for the Bank of England building. He bought this house near London Holborn and re-built it to make it both a home and museum. He also used this place to regularly educate students as he was also a professor. Upon his death in 1837, he gave his house / museum to the nation with the request to make it publically available as a museum, without making any changes (I later learned that he actually had a fight with his son, so he didn´t want to hand the house down to him). So his vast collection of sculptures, books, and paintings have been exactly left as they had been before he died, which I found fascinating. I used to love period dramas (hello Elizabeth Bennett!), so this house made me feel like living in the medieval times (or how I learned later during Georgian / pre-Victorian times).


Amazed by what I have read, I asked the guide in the room, "Was this a real house from the 18th century?". The guide was a young, gangly guy, and he jumped into a conversation quickly. "Yes, this was the house Sir Soane bought and re-built." "He seemed to be a rich man, no? Because this home is quite impressive?", I asked further. "Oh, no. Actually Sir Soane was born into a bricklayer family, so very humble conditions. He married well." (Oh, a rich wife this time!) "Mrs. Soane was an orphan, too, and Sir Soane and his wife had a very special love relationship, which you can feel throughout the house. Mrs. Soane`s uncle died unexpectedly, so Mrs. Soane inherited her uncle`s entire wealth." I don`t know whether it was the British manner or general respect, but I liked how he talked about "Sir Soane and Mrs. Soane", although they were dead fore more than 200 years.

I thanked the young guide and moved on. Only now, I realized a big portrait of a handsome man. "Oh, is this John Soane?", I asked surprised with an imaginary facepalm. (Yes, please forgive me missing the "Sir" too.) The guide replied with a quirky smile (and a bit of adoration if I was not mistaken, which I found sweet), "Yes, this is my boss :) doesn`t he look like a nice gentleman?" I immediately laughed and said, "Oh, this is so cool that you seem to be so passionate about this! I go to museums often, but sometimes I see people sitting in the corner of the room, being bored, and maybe for a good reason. But your energy is great to see!" He seemed to be both flattered and also self-conscious. "Everyone you will meet today share the same passion. This is why we love to work here. And I always learn a new thing every day - I mean there are thousands of books and sculptures, it is impossible to know them all!" I smiled and was grateful for his positive impact without him knowing what it meant to me.


I often read all the slogans to follow your passion, to live a life with joy, to do what you love - and I still need to find my gut to do so. But what the guy showed me was how radiant his energy was. He performed a great job. He sparked the visitors` interests. He told a story about a man who died 200 years ago with excitement, that captured everyone in the room. He made our experience a positive one, and as a cherry on top, he was happy and content himself. I was, unconsciously or consciously, drawn to him because of his excitement, and I would love to live this more like him.

What holds you back from following your passions? Let me know by sending an email to hello@vietlinhle.com – I would be very keen to hear your views! :) PS: Subscribe to my Newsletter to stay in touch for any upcoming posts and news :)

This week`s ...

  • Inspiration: Lars Amend - Why not?

  • Reflection: Where do I already do what I love and where don`t I?

  • Intention: I know life is a limited opportunity, so I deserve to do what I love.

Experience Life

Create your life with your true self - as a qualified coach, I am here to support you to make this change,  with you in the driver`s seat.