I arrived in Cyprus on the 3rd of February 2003, coming at that time from Switzerland where we had lived the first 3 years of this new century. Moving houses, places, and countries, we were actually pretty much used of as we left our home-country already in 1986. While unpacking the many boxes, my husband gave me a little booklet that he found in one of the local shops and believed to be right for me to read. I looked at the little flyer that I was holding in my hand, which was reading: Mind, Body and Spirit Exhibition coming up in Limassol April 2003.
Being a Reiki Master and counsellor, I always was interested and still am, in Personal Development and Spiritual Growth activities. Being used to be an expat wife, I knew I had to get into action to meet people and start settling down, and while reading this booklet I thought, ‘this is my chance to let people know that I am here and offering Reiki, Meditation and other kind of courses!’ Full of enthusiasm I phoned the organizers of the event: Francesca Pinoni and Anette Martinsen, who replied friendly that I was more than welcome to come as a visitor but as an exhibitor, the place was already fully booked. Instead of feeling disappointed I was even more determent to be a part of this thing that seemed to be so popular and certainly was attracting so many people I wanted to meet.
The venue for the MBS exhibition at that time turned out to be the Amathus Hotel in Limassol and so I went to the hotel, to ask if they had a conference room free for the same weekend and so it happened that I booked a beautiful room next to the entrance of the exhibition to provide during the weekend all kind of meditations. Francesca and Anette were most helpful to make me comfortable and welcome and so this turned out to be my first MBS experience now 19 years ago. That first MBS connected me with the most beautiful, dedicated, and loving people here on the island, luckily most of them are still around, still providing their services in the most excellent way and all of them made me from that weekend, feel at home in Cyprus.
Thinking back and realizing how amazing it is that those 2 founders, Francesca, and Anette, who started the MBS, with many friends helping them, have brought it to a level of excellence with now a professional team working the year around on festivals, exclusive travel trips, special weekends, courses and being the Cypriot spider in the web net of people from all colors, traditions, ideas, beliefs, and nationalities! In all those years the name has changed a bit from being the MBS Exhibition, being it now the MBS Festival, the people have changed with Anette now a being a famous actor in London and Francesca as a founder still supporting the present organizer of the MBS, Marilena Angelides and her team! But what has not changed is the huge drive, perseverance, and determination of all who are involved with organizing this event. It’s still THE event to go to when you are in the scene of personal development and growth.
I look at the magazine now, a professional and well-designed example of the professional approach the MBS has, and with love I think back of this small booklet /flyer that I got from my husband the first week here in Cyprus while unpacking my household, the one with the blue lettering in an A5 format, that directed my life here in Cyprus. I am very grateful for all that the MBS has given me and still does, the people I reconnect with every year by joining what is called now the festival, I am proud to see to see the growth in professionality as every year the festival is brought to a higher level. I am grateful for the friendships, the interest and kindness of all of those who dedicated their talent and time during all those 20 years. Personally, I am very grateful for being a witness of 19 years of dedication, creativity, trust, and great faith in all of us making this world a better place!
With this great team I am sure that the future of the MBS is in safe hands, and I wish them lots of success and all the best!
Wilhelmina de Boer Dekker.