Princessa Through The Looking Glass

Dreams Come True:

“Mamma can you take me to England to see the Queen? I want to be a Princess”

“One day you’ll go to England darling and you will see the queens and castles and you will be a Princess. Dreams come true if you wish really, really hard”

A couple of months later, my grandmother reminded me of her words while she was finishing my Queen’s costume. “You see sweetie, you are now the Spring Queen”. I smiled and kissed her. She was right, I had wished so hard to be a Princess that when my third grade class at school had to choose a Queen for the Spring Parade, they all voted for me.

From a very early age I dreamt about castles, charming Princes, fairies and magic worlds. I suppose every little girl does. But thanks to my grandma, I knew that I was not only dreaming and one day I would walk the castles that I had dreamt about so much. Almost 30 years later I can say I have walked all the innumerable Castles and Palaces where I had played in my fantasies so many times.

Wendy aged 9 Years Old

Princessa aged 9
Princessa aged 9

The Princessa: Machiavelli for Women

The Princessa: Machiavelli for Women
The Princessa: Machiavelli for Women

There's a sidelong sensibility at work in this post-feminist analog to the Renaissance's great work of strategy. Harriet Rubin urges women to triumph by turning their enemies into allies and their fear into power; by enlarging their sphere rather than defending it; and by learning to best instead of win.

 

Why Princessa?

A couple of years ago when I was waiting at London’s Heathrow I bought a book called “The Princessa, Machiavelli for women” by Harriet Rubin. At the time I was feeling a bit low and this book just opened a new world to me. Rubin’s philosophy in the book is simple: settle for nothing less than greatness. Like she says, “take what you want out of life (…) each day is yours for the taking”. From the first page it was like the book had been aimed at me and only me “I have written this book for you Princessa. Like Machiavellis Prince, you might be sitting alone somewhere safe, wanting to take control of your life, your loves, your problems (…)”. Rubin was talking to me, and she wanted to show me how to become a Princessa combining the tactics of love and war. That was a very simple book, less than 200 pages that encouraged me to follow my path.

That is why when I had to create a screen name for HubPages I choose Princessa. Because a Princessa is powerful in her own right. A Princessa is a woman who feels that she wants and deserves more than what she has already gained, but she is also a woman of love and tenderness.

A little Limeña
A little Limeña

I Was Born...

I was born in Peru during a dictatorship, which forced my mom to deliver me at home with my granny’s aid. For some reason my parents chose a fairy tale name for me, a story teller who believed in fairies. I suppose our names influence who we are and who we want to be and maybe that is why I do believe in magic and dreams coming true and I try to transmit that to my children.

Only 30 days after I was born, my mom took me to the jungle as she was desperate to join my father who was working there. I grew up between the sporadic trips to the coast and the jungle. My mom believed in following my dad to the ends of the Earth. So that is how I ended up talking my first words in some Indian tribe dialect that my nanny spoke and stumbling my first steps at the shores of the Amazon River. Crossing log bridges, bathing in the Amazon, temperatures of 40°C, endless insects, snakes and spiders didn’t scare my mom, but when she heard me talking a jungle dialect and my poor Spanish with an Indian accent she was horrified and decided to move back to Lima to start my formal education. Still, we spent a large amount of time travelling around the country so my mom could see my dad more often. Even after my two brothers were born, we continued travelling and spending long periods of time in the oil producing provinces.

My First Years In The Amazon Jungle

Sailing the Amazon with my grandmother
Sailing the Amazon with my grandmother
Mom giving me a bath on the Amazon River
Mom giving me a bath on the Amazon River
My mom crossing a bridge with her maid behind her.
My mom crossing a bridge with her maid behind her.
With my dad
With my dad

Peru

Sacsayhuamán, Cuzco.
Sacsayhuamán, Cuzco.
With the king of the Andes, the Condor
With the king of the Andes, the Condor
Macchupichu, Cuzco
Macchupichu, Cuzco
Chan Chan, Trujillo
Chan Chan, Trujillo
Click thumbnail to view full-size
wedding dayengagement photoScotlandAt Stirling Castle
wedding day
wedding day
engagement photo
engagement photo
Scotland
Scotland
At Stirling Castle
At Stirling Castle

Post-school Years:

In 1990 with the start of the Fujimori government and one of the biggest economic crises I started a course in Communication Sciences at a private all-girl University. The University was run by nuns from the Sacred Heart congregation. Their pitiless attitude and money making schemes started a rejection to Catholicism in me that has only become worse with the years. With the economic crisis my parents were ruined and in less than a year they lost 3 restaurants and decided to move to New York. I did not fancy going to America so I stayed behind finishing my university degree and working for a Radio Station at the same time.

In May 1994, I took one of the most difficult decisions for a young girl. I decided to follow a dream, left everything behind and started a new life in the UK. I arrived in London’s Heathrow on a cold morning. I did not speak the language very well and I only knew one friend over there who I had met only a few months before. As soon as I arrived in London I left my bursting suitcase in the hotel and literally ran to see BuckinghamPalace. My first impression was disappointing. Not only was the city dull, cold and wet, but BuckinghamPalace was not any prettier or more impressive than the Government Palaces I had seen in South America!


Britain:

I spent my early twenties in Britain, between Scotland and England.  A couple of days before my 21st birthday I got married and re-started university. This time I was after a Psychology degree.  I don’t remember much of my wedding day; except a feeling of solitude and cold fear running through my body.  My family couldn’t come at such short notice so I married among strangers.  Every year I went to spend Christmas with my family in New York but I never fancied settling there.  America was not for me.  To be fair, I was not very happy in Britain either; the weather was always awful and I found the people polite to the point of being hypocrites.  I changed a lot to fit into my new world; I lowered my voice and calmed my manners.  I became obsessed with body image. 

Spain, Marocco, Paris and pregnancy...

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Spain, ready for partyingSpain, el ChorroBarcelona, SpainMoroccoMoroccoParis 1999Paris, 248 days to the year 20004 months pregnant5 months pregnant
Spain, ready for partying
Spain, ready for partying
Spain, el Chorro
Spain, el Chorro
Barcelona, Spain
Barcelona, Spain
Morocco
Morocco
Morocco
Morocco
Paris 1999
Paris 1999
Paris, 248 days to the year 2000
Paris, 248 days to the year 2000
4 months pregnant
4 months pregnant
5 months pregnant
5 months pregnant

Spain, The Good Life And Pregnancy...

After I gained my university degree I had nothing really tying me to Britain so we soon moved to Spain where I had the time of my life. For a couple of years I just enjoyed the beach and nightlife in Marbella, without any other worry in my little world. I travelled to Morocco and Paris quite often and always continued spending the Christmas holidays in America. It was a great time living in front of the beach and finally being myself again. Suddenly my world changed and one day when I had thought I had the “hangover of my life” I discovered that I was pregnant. Can you imagine that? I thought I could not have children and all of a sudden there I was pregnant! The birth of my little Princess did not change things too much and I continued taking extended vacations with her to America and Europe. And just when I thought that miracles do not happen twice, without trying for it, I found myself pregnant again. The second time I came out with a “little hooligan” and I think that is the last of the surprises I am having in that department.

Italy, Dominican Republic and France:

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Rome, The ColisseumThe VaticanRome, the ForumDominican RepublicFrance, Chabenet CastleFrance, the farm
Rome, The Colisseum
Rome, The Colisseum
The Vatican
The Vatican
Rome, the Forum
Rome, the Forum
Dominican Republic
Dominican Republic
France, Chabenet Castle
France, Chabenet Castle
France, the farm
France, the farm

France:

When time came to start formal education for my little ones we decided to move away from Spain to a more quiet part of the world. Six months after the birth of my hooligan, we took an extended holiday to look for our ideal place in the world.

Our house hunting took us to the Caribbean but despite having ideal weather we chose against it. We also looked in Scotland and Italy but only to come back to my ideal place: France. I had already been in France and I had loved it. I was convinced that it would be the ideal place to raise a family. A few months later we moved to France. We travelled the country until we found our ideal spot in the countryside. Four years later I still love it here. Who knows where life will take us in a couple of years.

Skydiving!!!

Wendy Skydiving
Wendy Skydiving | Source

A Princess among Princesses in LA

More by this Author


Comments 46 comments

ripplemaker profile image

ripplemaker 7 years ago from Cebu, Philippines

Hi Princessa, I enjoyed reading your story and your love of castles and princesses :-)  Your photos when you were a baby and growing into a young girl all the way to adulthood is wonderful.  I especially smiled at how your grandma loved you tremendously. And I even recall your comment in one of my hubs as to how she taught you to pray.  Life has taken you to so many places and you have gained so much wisdom too... indeed who knows where your next journey will be.  But it has been great knowing you - a real princess! (Loved your definition of a princess)  Keep shining your light.


kins profile image

kins 7 years ago from shanghai

you have a happy life,so cool!


daveearley profile image

daveearley 7 years ago from Chicago, IL

You've been all over the place, nice pics! The Colisseum, Vatican, Spain... I've seen some pics before, looks like a great place.


goldentoad profile image

goldentoad 7 years ago from Free and running....

Great story to read. I wish I could hear more about the nightlife in Marbella.


Cris A profile image

Cris A 7 years ago from Manila, Philippines

I enjoyed reading about your travels and I thank you for sharing them. I'm glad that you have found that perfect spot for you and your little monarchs - or at least for the meantime :D


Dottie1 profile image

Dottie1 7 years ago from MA, USA

What a wonderful story. I loved every minute of it. The pictures of you Princessa when you were young are precious. I can only wonder from your story how many more dreams will come true for you. Thank you for sharing more of the lovely Princessa:) Thumbs up!


Princessa profile image

Princessa 7 years ago from France Author

ripplemaker : Thank you for your very kind words. My gradma always had and still has a big influence in my life. Among all her wisdom, she has pass onto us that “nothing is impossible in this life”, and we like to believe that.

Kins: I have had very difficult times too. Being a young girl in a foreign country all alone is not easy; but on the whole, yes, I can say that I have been very fortunate.

daveearley : I have not been yet in half the places I would like to see... The world is so big I don’t know where to start next.

goldentoad : I have not made a hub about nightlife in Marbella because the « hot » places keep changing so often that it is difficult to keep track of them if you are not there. Last summer when I went back, some of my “usual places” didn’t exist any more. But yes, Spanish night life is the best!

Cris: How true, I’ve found my perfect place…. But for how long?

Dottie: Thanks for stopping to comment and for the thumbs up. The pictures from my childhood are indeed very precious to me. I had lost them for a long time and only recovered them a couple of years ago when I went back to Peru.


funride profile image

funride 7 years ago from Portugal

I loved to read this great hub and get to know you a little better Princessa. And what can I say... You´re THE Princess! I wish you achieve everything you want and deserve. Thanks for sharing it with us ;)


Princessa profile image

Princessa 7 years ago from France Author

funride: Thanks to you for taking the time to read this hub and for all your best wishes.

Beijocas :)


Catherine Cabrol profile image

Catherine Cabrol 7 years ago from Canada

Merci pour cette bouffee d'air francais, je suis francaise moi meme, je viens de Narbonne, petite ville de l'Aude a quelques kilometre de Carcassonne, j'aime beaucoup la vivacite et la clarte de votre hub. thanks again, Catherine


VioletSun profile image

VioletSun 7 years ago from Oregon/ Name: Marie

Princessa: I truly enjoyed reading your hub- you are a very intriguing person, very worldly and yet you come across as pretty down to earth too, easy to connect to. I enjoyed the pics of you, especially as a beautiful little girl. :)

Thumbs up!


SUNNY22 7 years ago

you have a happy life,so cool!

Princessa: I truly enjoyed reading your hub- you are a very intriguing person, very worldly and yet you come across as pretty down to earth too, easy to connect to. I enjoyed the pics of you, especially as a beautiful little girl. :)

NICE HUB.


Princessa profile image

Princessa 7 years ago from France Author

Catherine : I’ve been in the Aude, very pretty, I specially like Carcassone for its mediaeval city. I have a lot to thank to your country; it has adopted me and made me incredibly happy. Thanks for stopping to comment.

Violet: Thanks for your kind comment, I always appreciate your visits.


Bestlifepossible profile image

Bestlifepossible 7 years ago from Cary, NC

I have also visited England, France and Italy and even Scotland - loved all of them. Of course, like you my heart belongs in France - I love all their landmarks and history. I was a French minor in college and even taught HS French for a year. Is it the same as it was in the 80's (when I was there) or has it changed?

Thanks for sharing your interesting life with us - you deserve to be in the spotlight! :)


Isabella Snow profile image

Isabella Snow 7 years ago

Isn't that the truth about UK weather, I'd be married and living there now as well if it didn't rain so much. Your photos and story are awesome! And if you love castles you need to come here and see the tons and tons that around the country -- my fave is a replica (but smaller) of Windsor.

PS Do you know that Disney pic is under the comments box? You might want to move it up where everyone can see it - it's so cute!! :)


Princessa profile image

Princessa 7 years ago from France Author

Bestlife: My first trip to France was on 1999, so I am not sure how much it has changed since the 80s. I've heard that it is not much different, but I have not experienced 80's France.

Isabella: UK weather is just so depressing, I will never get use to it. I love Scotland in the summer (even if it is rainning) because they have lots of sunlight, but the rest of the year is just unbereable for me!

Thanks for the advice on the castles. I need to start planning my next "castle tour".


RGraf profile image

RGraf 7 years ago from Wisconsin

Wow! what a life! I would to have seen what you have. You are so blest to have seen so much of the world.


charanjeet kaur profile image

charanjeet kaur 7 years ago from Delhi

Wow i second my thought when i said you are a charmer, my god all the pics you look a stunner.. Love every bit of your life and so glad for you that you had a gr8 life. I have had th epleasure of travelling the world myself, and of all the places i have been i would love to go visit paris anyday i am still reminiscent of the chateau de versailles. It is magnificient and all the walks in this fashion city are memorable.


Princessa profile image

Princessa 7 years ago from France Author

Rgraf: I am really grateful I have been able to see so much and met so many wonderful people on the way.

charanjeet kaur : Thanks for the kind words, you make me blush :) The Chateau de Versailles must be one of the most wondeful buildings ever built, I just couldn't get away from it.


LelahKimball profile image

LelahKimball 7 years ago from USA

Wow. I admire you for living life on your terms. Fantastic!


Princessa profile image

Princessa 7 years ago from France Author

LelahKimball : Thanks, it is not always easy to follow your dreams. I was brought up in what I would call a "castrating society" where most people just do what others are doing and anyone who wants to do something original or different is outcasted as a bit 'loopy'. Being yourself is a challenge, but it pays well :)


chaixkee profile image

chaixkee 7 years ago from Philippines

Lucky are you to have visit those palaces. I have also dreamt of becoming a princess like every little girls do. My daughter used to be a princess...evrytime she's playing, she is a princess...the looks, the attire, the CROWN. You are an inspiration to everyone aspiring to be a famous princess. Your face's lovely like an angel that makes me wonder how kind and approachable you are. Though I haven't seen you personally, I think you have a great attit that everyone can love and enjoy.

Anyways, thanks for linking your hubs to me. I enjoy reading every piece of it cause I learn a lot. You simply complete my profession...I am also a graduate of Psychology. You simply make me proud.

Continue being a Princess...thumbs up!


AEvans profile image

AEvans 7 years ago from SomeWhere Out There

Princessa: I enjoyed reading about your life and travels, now I know where your name came from, I always knew it meant something strong. You have an absolutely beautiful family.


Princessa profile image

Princessa 7 years ago from France Author

chaixkee : thank you very much for your kind words and encouragement.

AEvans: Thanks for taking the time to know me a bit more. I just hope that more women out there can feel inspired to take what they deserve from life.


loneacorn profile image

loneacorn 7 years ago from India

Hi Princessa. You had an adventurous growing year. Those initial years made you strong. Travelling to so many places enriched your knowledge. You have enjoyed your life to the fullest and are continuing to do the same. Your hubs exude warmth and make us relate with you. All cheers to Princessa.


Princessa profile image

Princessa 7 years ago from France Author

loneacorn: Thanks so much for your kind words.


men are dorks profile image

men are dorks 7 years ago from Namibia

You are very impressive, and kind and cute...


Princessa profile image

Princessa 7 years ago from France Author

thanks for the kind comment "men are dorks"


dianacharles profile image

dianacharles 7 years ago from India

such a lovely hub and some great pictures......you have lived life Princess size...grabbed it by the crown :)


stephanie mclain profile image

stephanie mclain 7 years ago from Texas

Wow, what a great hub! I throughly enjoyed hearing about all your travels. Thanks for sharing!


Princessa profile image

Princessa 7 years ago from France Author

dianacharles: Thanks for the comment, I am expecting more adventures yet :)

Stephanie: Thanks to you for taking th etime to read.


NewHorizons profile image

NewHorizons 6 years ago from Gozo, Malta, EU.

A great hub, very interesting reading and photos. A very spiced up and varied life full of uncommon experiences. No wonder you have so many fans. I've visited England, Scotland and Spain for short holidays only, but I've never been to France. I think it could be my next holiday in Summer 2010 because I love France without ever having visited it. I can read and write in French but do not understand if a French person were to speak to me. All because I'm not used to hear it spoken, I guess.


Princessa profile image

Princessa 6 years ago from France Author

NewHorizons: If you can already read and write in French it will not take long for you to understand spoken French. I arrived here with NO knowledge of French at all. My French was limited to OUI and MERCI. Despite that a couple of weeks after arriving I was already chatting with the locals and making new friends.


SimeyC profile image

SimeyC 6 years ago from NJ, USA

What a wonderful insight into your life - thanks for sharing!


Princessa profile image

Princessa 6 years ago from France Author

SimeyC: Thank YOU for taking the time to read and comment.


aoiffe379 profile image

aoiffe379 6 years ago

Well done. I truly enjoyed this hub and can relate to it in a way. Peru came alive when I met a teacher from that region.She led a group on a visit. I like mountains but not cold. No, I did not go. Although I enjoyed Britain with its historic past, I share your view. What I remember about France is the food. Beautiful country yes; food no. Italy is my favourite European country. What amused me was 'hooligan'!I suspect you have an exciting life!


Princessa profile image

Princessa 6 years ago from France Author

aoiffe379: so glad to read that you enjoyed reading this... I guess the answer is YES, there is always something exciting happening, which reminds me that I should up date this hub with the latest adventures!

It is curious how things happen when you least expect them. I thought I could not have children and the idea didn't bother me, I didn't even try to have them when all of a sudden I was blessed with my little princess and my hooligan! Life is always full of surprises...


SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 6 years ago from Southern California, USA

What an amazing life story Princessa. You have truly lived the life of Princessa, and you have met so many interesting people along the way. Most people cannot boast to having lived in so many places as you have. That is a great thing!


hypnodude profile image

hypnodude 6 years ago from Italy

Wonderful hub, very beautiful story, really a pleasure to read. Bookmarked to read it again. And I agree with you, France is a great place to live.


Princessa profile image

Princessa 6 years ago from France Author

SweetiePie: I have been very lucky, but I have also taken great risks, at the end it was worth it. I am looking forwards to more adventures!

hypnodude: I am happy you enjoyed it. I really like it living in France.


sagebrush_mama profile image

sagebrush_mama 6 years ago from The Shadow of Death Valley...Snow Covered Mountain Views Abound!

What an exciting path you've traveled! Very interesting to read!


Princessa profile image

Princessa 6 years ago from France Author

sagebrush_mama: I have been very lucky and I am thankful for that. I have done a lot but I am still looking for more adventures, keep tuned :)


TurtleDog profile image

TurtleDog 6 years ago

Great hub! What a way to grab life and live!


Ms. Unique 55 profile image

Ms. Unique 55 5 years ago from Edmond OK

Hello Princessa,

After reading your bio, I am sure that You have lived a very charmed life. I am very happy to meet You. I am new at Hubbing; my love for the written word was what caught me and bought me in here, and You have truly encouraged me.


travel_man1971 profile image

travel_man1971 4 years ago from Bicol, Philippines

You're a well-traveled person. The story of your life is one heck of many adventures that are interesting to read with lessons learned, too. :D


andy 8 months ago

Princessa what can say fantastic stories may there be many more chapters to your life still to tell and i look forward to reading them thank you so much :)

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