Ah, the opulent life of excess and indulgence, a realm where I reign supreme, albeit with a touch of the paradoxical. For amidst the luxury, the sparkle, and the sheer joie de vivre, I’ve inadvertently mastered an art most peculiar. Yes, darlings, I’m talking about the sophisticated craft of how to lose friends and, quite remarkably, influence absolutely no one.

Now, you might wonder how a woman of my taste and flair could possibly be an expert in such a seemingly negative endeavor. Well, let me weave you a tale so rich in self-discovery and hilariously unfortunate events that you’d think it’s straight out of a comedy sketch. My journey, akin to a global adventure, is punctuated with moments of rejection so profound, they’ve become my signature move.

The Sound Of My Voice

Imagine this: a voice that could clear a room faster than a fire alarm—described by some as the incessant honk of a goose with a bad cold, or the raspy bark of a lifelong smoker. Yes, my voice, an instrument of unique timbre, often leaves people mistaking me for a perpetually intoxicated soul, plagued by a ceaseless cold. But, my dear readers, it’s simply the soundtrack to my life, one that has been labeled, quite unfairly, as somewhat crazy.

Growing up as an immigrant’s child in rural Australia, my childhood was an endless series of battles against racial discrimination and bullying.

Being called a ‘hairy tomato’ or ‘greasy salami’ was the norm, endearments courtesy of my lovely peers, aiming to remind me daily that I did not belong.

Yet, here’s the twist—I was born in Orbost, Australia, as much a native of the land as the kangaroos and koalas that symbolize it.

Gracie Opulanza Jenny The Cow Corringle farm Australia

The Food I Ate

My education at St. Joseph’s Catholic School was an extension of this rejection, a place where being different was not celebrated but condemned. The irony of feeling ostracized in a setting named after a biblical figure known for overcoming adversity was not lost on me. My teachers, not to be outdone by the students, judged me for the color of my skin and the Italian fabrics that graced my body—too avant-garde for a town whose fashion sensibilities were as bland as its meat pies.

Indeed, my distinct appearance, from my “too big” nose (affectionately termed Gonzo) to my fashion-forward attire (a curse in a sea of uniformity), made me the perfect target. Add to that the exotic lunches I brought from home—salami, tomatoes, Italian bread, and cheese, oh my!—and you’ve got the perfect recipe for an outcast. The local kids’ clubs and dance groups? No entry for the girl who dared to be different.

The Rejection

But here’s where the opulence of my spirit shines through. Each rejection, every snide remark, was a building block in the grand design of my unique persona. I embraced my differences, my heritage, and yes, even my controversial voice, with open arms and a flare only I could muster.

In learning how to lose friends and certainly not influence people, I’ve discovered the invaluable lesson of self-worth. T

he fiery defenses I’ve built, the anger I’ve channeled into passion, and the unyielding desire to fight for my place in the world stem from a deep-seated belief in my own value. This opulent lifestyle I adore? It’s not just about the material wealth or the lavish parties. It’s a testament to the rich tapestry of experiences that have shaped me into the indomitable spirit I am today.

So, to those who find themselves in a similar boat, navigating the choppy waters of social rejection with a bottle of champagne in hand, remember this:

The path to losing friends and not influencing people is not a journey of despair. It’s an adventure teeming with lessons in resilience, self-love, and, most importantly, the art of living life on your own extravagant terms.

Great Ocean Rd

Don’t Ever Allow Anyone You Don’t Belong

With each setback, I’ve learned to laugh a little louder, shine a bit brighter, and sashay through life with an unapologetic gusto that’s all my own. After all, who needs to influence others when you’re this fabulous at influencing yourself?

So, here’s to the misfits, the outcasts, and the fabulous souls who’ve turned rejection into their own brand of exclusivity. May we all find the strength to wear our quirks like the finest silk, dine on our differences with silver spoons, and toast to the exquisite beauty of being unapologetically us. Cheers, darlings, to the art of opulence in the face of adversity.

The winding journey of life, filled with its twists, turns, and, let’s not forget, the occasional push off course by well-meaning (or not so well-meaning) individuals who fancy themselves the gatekeepers of our destinies. At the ripe, fabulous age of fifty, one might imagine I’d have it all figured out. Yet, here I am, still navigating through the opulent maze of dreams, desires, and the ever-persistent voices of doubt—courtesy of those who think condo living is the be-all and end-all of existence.

Koh Samui Thailand Swimwear trends (1) sunset view

The art of rejection, you see, is a craft I’ve honed to perfection, a skill imbued in me from my earliest days as an immigrant child. A life painted in vibrant hues of resilience, where every racial slur, every judgmental gaze, was but a stroke on the canvas of my existence, contributing to the masterpiece I am today. It’s almost ironic, the people who’ve faced their own battles, their own flights from war and despair, are often the ones hurling these slurs. Yet, in their words, I hear not hatred, but jealousy, envy, and the whisperings of darker forces at play.

In this tumultuous sea of opinions and unsolicited advice, I’ve found my anchor in faith. Like Moses wandering the desert, I’ve learned the invaluable lesson of perseverance, of walking through my own metaphorical deserts to emerge on the other side, unscathed by the labels and limitations imposed by others. It’s a journey of self-discovery, where each step taken in solitude brings me closer to the divine, to a place of understanding and peace.

The path has not been easy, fraught with challenges and moments of despair, but it is one that has taught me the true meaning of strength and conviction. To seek God amidst the turmoil, to find solace in prayer and reflection, is to walk a road less traveled, a road that leads to enlightenment and emancipation from the worldly chains of prejudice and negativity.

Country Road Australia

Country Road Australia