33 Short Stories from a Journey through Life  
Human Encounters, Observations, Vision, … just Stories

romantic, funny, serious, … just so


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The first 30 stories are available as a book, titled “The Sparkling Chandelier:  just click on Amazon.com or go to www.bn.com or to your local book store,  under ISBN # 978-1-4917-2692-1 (hardcover) or 978-1-4917-2691-4 (e-book)

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You opened this website, you began to read these words – what can it bring you?
Has it ever happened to you that you drove for half an hour – from home to work or between any other two points – and then did not remember much of what you saw?  Large parts of our daily lives are like that.  Many of us go through most of our lives like this.  But many others see, perceive, understand, and share life’s joys or sorrows with others in empathy.  Life can be so touching, so serious – but it can also be so funny and full of joy!
What is our existence in this world?  For most of us, it is a struggle for survival in a fragile way of life.  Then arise the desires for wealth, importance in society, and entertainment.  But does the life given to us not expect mental growth and personality development, the caring for others or public service, also stewardship of nature – and can we not enjoy all the beauty in art, culture, and nature around us?

The following stories are offered to you, the reader, to let you pause and perceive, to touch your human sensitivity and understanding – and also to bring you joy, to simply entertain you.
So, please, proceed!  Select the pages and begin reading these stories!
When you are done, hopefully you will feel enriched – and, maybe, you will begin to perceive stories in your own life.



Table of Contents




1.      "The Golden Mirror
Life can be full of poetry, the hanging of  a mirror as a reflection on joy and love. 


2.      "Tiger Joe
A surprise in the Arizona desert, 
a failure in life, a hero to me. 

3.      "The Raritan River Ferry
A discarded ferry, the story of an old man,  a child’s thought for you. 

4.      "Spring in Princeton"
Life can be full of surprises, 
and very funny at that. 

5.      "Happy Wildlife in Princeton
Surprise encounters - some resonance -
and a smile remains! 

6.      "Two Lives
Could it be the story of many marriages, 
the solution for some predicaments? 

7.      "The Wall
Did death approach the salesman 
- but joy and love result? 

8.      "The Colorful Ball
A story for our young grandchildren,   Christina and Scott

9.      " ... When a Door Opened!
... and light came in!
Perceive opportunities and grasp them!

10.  "Jesus of Nazareth
A vision 
- possibly offering some explanations. 

11.  "The Moment of Light that Came and Went
A transcendental vision 
after September 11, 2001 


12.  "The Death of the Taliban Fighter
A beautiful vision turns into darkness 

13.  "and then, the sound of an Aria
Greeting to a Future Reader   

14. "Troy"
The light and the darkness of a troubled life .

15. "The Phantom of the Website"
a story for experienced and addicted owners of personal websites
16. "Fortune Comes, Fortune Goes"
Perceive, grasp, pursue opportunities, but not the wrong temptations! 
17. "The Very Short Life of a Tiny Fly"
She lived for only one day, but that one so fully, that, at the end, just one additional day to live would have been her greates happiness!

18. Guiding Lights in My Life

Exceptional Individuals who gave light and direction to my early life.  .


The dark stories:


19. The Old Lady’s Birthdays


20. The Last One Was A Loner


21. The End


22. The Ox


23. The Ant


24. Light After Darkness


Some light stories:


25. Music in the Air


26. The Sparkling Chandelier


27. Moments of Joy


28. Be Content or Conquer Mountains – or Find a Small Coin


29. My Collection of Water Molecules and Thoughts


30. Farewell to Earth


Postscript Stories:


31. The Journey to Paradise Island


32. “The Always  Friendly Lady


33. “Our Life seen from Eternity



A special addition:


Letter From a 93 Year Old Lady

Living in a retirement home in Los Angeles, California.


Special Addition:
Four stories by Pierre Decey written for antique railroad or railway amateurs -
or tourists of France. 
Select a story by clicking on the title: 

"The Little Train of Provence
About a historic train that once was 
- the first train of Provence!

"The Train of the Pines
The "Little Train of Provence" refound!
A delightful excursion from Nice into the mountains by railroad!

"The Historic Train of Vivarais
An excursion by steam-engine train through the Vivarais mountains - and the very old motor coach refound! 

"The White Valley Train"

For writings on:  Science-Evolution, the Human Mind, Philosophy-Theology, History & Politics -
visit Helmut Schwab's Writings <www.schwab-writings.com>

Biographical Notes

    For Helmut Schwab, value of life came from the warmth of human bonds - in the family, among friends, and in chance encounters.  The experience of the world with a human touch - in empathy, joy, or humor; but also in sympathy, sorrow, and suffering - gave the inspiration for his short stories.
    He found joy of life in the obsrvation of all the variety and beauty in nature, whether in grandiose scenery or minute detail - or in his participation in various forms of the arts.
    His academic training was in the sciences. He worked in the electronics industry. Most of his personal effort and writing was concentrated on a deeper understanding of the universe and the biological world we live in.  Specifically, he concentrated on understanding the important human characteristics of mental creativity, ethical values, and individual personality.
    Of greater personal importance to Helmut Schwab was his concentration on the dichotomy between science and religion, the question of the remaining transcendental foundations of existence, and the consequent meaning or purpose of our lives.  He also pursued historical studies.  The essays resulting from all these efforts can be found on the website "
    Schwab’s volunteer effort was dedicated to community and environmental issues, the handicapped, and the struggle of low-income families in our inner cities.

    Please click here to send feedback to the author.

Pierre Decey:
    Est né en Mars 1938 dans la région parisienne où il a vécu jusqu’en 1970, date à laquelle il a gagné le rivage méditerranéen.  De formation juridique il a travaillé dans ce domaine jusqu’à son installation à Cannes, où il a dirigé un cabinet d’assurances pendant 30 ans.

    Il s’implique dans la vie de la cité, particulièrement : la sauvegarde des espaces verts, le développement des transports en commun, ayant contribué à l’élaboration de la « Charte de l’environnement » signée par le Maire de Cannes. Sa retraite récente lui permet de voyager, faire des montages de films, s’adonner à sa passion des petits trains jusqu’à en écrire des « nouvelles », telle celle intitulée « Le Train de la Côte ».





























© 2002 H. Schwab