Little town
its a quiet village
Everyday
Like the one before…

 Now, if you’re a Disney enthusiast much as I am, I bet you just sang those lines. Well, even if you’re not one, I think you’d still be quite familiar with how the song goes on from there (yes, with a lot of French words and an awesome arrangement) since Beauty and the Beast basically hit the 90s kids with a sweeping arc of nostalgia ensuring its success even without the help of the ‘real’ kids who will now remember Emma Watson as Belle rather than this brilliant girl who taught us that no, it’s not leviosAH but

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Aaah, time flies. Rather fast, doesn’t it?

I have always felt that among the Disney princesses, Belle is the one I can most relate to. Not only is she a bookworm [ in the movie where she quoted A Midsummer Night’s Dream to the Beast, I almost got up my seat and recited it with her. Ugh. That’s how excited I was] and introvert but also because she lives in this little town. [She also likes to sing apparently.. or was that required? Haha]. Anyway, like Belle and her little town, I have come to realize that the little town I have grown up to had not change at all.

Some say Belle is too ambitious for her own good. I’ve even heard others jokingly said that Belle was ready to pounce on the Beast even with that appearance just because he has got the riches of the world. Yet one must not be so judgmental as those characters in the story, must one be? I grow up, like Belle did, in this small provincial life, almost trapped in an endless cycle of teen moms, the dramatic neighbors’ more dramatic love affairs and the prejudice that to chase after one’s dreams means to also be less of a part of this stagnant community.

Yet Belle did choose her own fate. I did also.

It is not ambition nor riches nor anything so materialistic at all, not even the promise of happily ever after. It was freedom. It was the freedom we have seen in the pages we have turned, in the places we’ve visited in our imaginations and in the hours we have spent reading and rereading books after books which had told us that there is a world beyond. There is a world waiting. There is so much that is still out there that can’t be seen if I instead choose not to drown in this stagnant pool of vile prejudice. I want so much more than that. And for that, I did understand Belle.

And since Belle conveys it more dramatically but sincerely, I must borrow her words from her reprise:

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I want adventure in a great wide somewhere
I want it more than I can tell
And for once it might be grand to have someone understand
I want so much more than they’ve got planned.

 

I want more than this provincial life. Is that so much to ask? The desire to be more, that’s what Belle and I both had. But as she held the last pages of her own book and reached a peace in her heart with a castle and prince by her side, a little bit happy and sad I presumed like any bookworm after the final chapter of her beloved book, it has then come to me that this is not the conclusion I would have wanted for me. I wanted to change this little town, I realized. I wanted to wake it from its sleep and share to it the adventure I had in a great wide somewhere.

After all, I may be 20 years of age but I would like to believe that in the deepest recesses of my heart, I am still that kid who just wants to have a happily-ever-after for everyone.

Featured image is mine. All others are not mine and so credit goes to their respective owners.
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