Last Thursday, I had my eighth experience with Les Misérables. The first was with the book, which took me a month to read, and the 2nd through 7th, was with the movie. (Of course, I am not counting all the Youtube videos of “Do you hear the people sing?” on repeat I watched.)
I am happy to say, my eight experience was in the sixth row center at the theatre. And I only cried once, which happens to be at the same moment I always cry. At the end of the show, when Cosette is weeping in Jean Valjean's lap and that iconic song comes on in the background, I tried to force my chest not to palpitate. It never did worked.
Now, I share with you 8 quotes from Les Misérables that pertain to travel, volunteering, and the future. Even though these words are centered around revolution, death, misery, and idealism, they are every bit as pertinent today as back during the French Revolution.
1. “The future has several names. For the weak, it is impossible; for the fainthearted, it is unknown; but for the valiant, it is ideal.”
2. “Not being heard is no reason for silence.”
3. “You ask me what forces me to speak? a strange thing; my conscience.”
4. “There is nothing like a dream to create the future.”
5. “Before him he saw two roads, both equally straight; but he did see two; and that terrified him--he who had never in his life known anything but one straight line. And, bitter anguish, these two roads were contradictory.”
6. “Have no fear of robbers or murderers. They are external dangers, petty dangers. We should fear ourselves. Prejudices are the real robbers; vices the real murderers. The great dangers are within us. Why worry about what threatens our heads or our purses? Let us think instead of what threatens our souls.”
7. “Are you afraid of the good you might do?”
8. “Unwitting innocence is sometimes more penetrating than cunning.”
And for fun, if you enjoy Les Mis, here is the video I have watched on repeat.