Remember going to your local one hour photo shop to pick up prints from those indestructible disposable cameras we all tossed around on summer vacations. The excitement to see the partially light-fogged 4×6 candid moments on glossy or matte paper. And making sure to request double prints to share with summer friends. Keep that nostalgia in mind, my summer friend, when viewing these handful of moments from my recent adventure. For the youngins that have no clue of the magic of waiting for photos, just pretend this is a facebook album instead ;D
When traveling with a eurorail pass the most viewed landscape ends up being station after station after station.
And when not on the rails this blister-inducing footwear took me everywhere. From rickety wooden bridges in lush green forests
to pastures where greeters were just as curious as their observers
down outstandingly odd streets
chased the dissipating sun
and found a replacement light source in an iconic structure.
They even helped me climb on to ancient stones.
I gazed upon impressive spaces that were the size of villages
And were responsible for saving a town.
Entertained when we stumbled upon a stellar light show
And by the famous Flamenco of Spain.
Treated to more tastiness than should be allowed
hours of train reflections
and the most cliche European views.
But my favorite shot to share comes from my hunt for seagulls on the northern coast of France. These stealth bombers (one dropped a payload on my friend) were quick and full of character. I successfully captured my soaring brethren in the perfect summer sky. And encapsulated the journey in one floating moment.
Plan: Land in one place. Grab a Eurorail Pass. Explore multiple countries over a two week span. Reality: Renewing my love for a nomadic lifestyle on a trip filled with family, friends (old and new), and flavorful food.
This was not my first European adventure. In fact I used to live there. But something about the last two weeks felt more engaging than previous times I’ve run on the rails. More alive. Hard to articulate the journey’s fusion of the perfect traveling partner; luck; and discoveries, but I think this acrobatic neck flag in front of the Eiffel Tower sums it up nicely. Overall the days were packed full of sights, laughter, minor hiccups, and kilometer after kilometer of all types of landscapes. From mountains to sea. City to countryside. Old world and new. We saw it all. A two week journey is just enough time to taste the culture and leave my vagabond soul ready for the next backpack expedition.
Writing of culture, I won’t bombard the world with every picture of the fine cuisine that I devoured, but I do want to mention a few highlights. Like this sweet dessert crepe — poached pear drenched in dark chocolate over a wheat crepe — we had after our savory lunch crepes in Versailles.
My European adventure began to feel like a tasting tour with all of the delicious treats and dishes I kept stuffing down. Pretzel bread and strudels. Crepes filled with various sweet or savory goodness. Breads of different shapes, sizes, textures, and fillings. Tapas and pincho delicacies. And the cheeses. Oh goodness the cheeses. They awakened some long lost cheese lover I had been hiding from myself all these years. Never been much of a foodie, but after this latest culinary European exploration I may have to become one.
awake to the life of illusions. walls shrinking around. sky a tempting hue. i grow taller. dominate my domain. scour over streets below. limited options present themselves. be crushed. suffocate under blank walls. or take flight. and discover vibrancy in an endless sky. accepting the terms. a time has come for escape.
when it’s around my legs transform into cinder blocks. my appetite shrinks to unadventurous. and where excitement should be budding i find a void. even the summer sun cannot sway me from my devotion to procrastination. my want of avoidance. numbness to all. it has a weight. a presence. a name. i just have no interest in knowing it.
fire coursing through veins. pump the heat that fuels this dance. rhythmic motions to beats unheard. endless energy flows outward. coming from nowhere. living everywhere. and i keep movement time. in this high. connecting with the jubilation of souls afar. whirling. join in this fire dance. for we are alive.
confession time. i’m a nerd. have been since i can remember. tried on different coats of nerd. started as a child with bug nerd and evolved into book nerd. then there was photo and writing nerd. cool nerdiness followed with circus nerd! and now i’ve settled into yarn nerd. specifically crochet. not just your regular “forever long scarf” hooker, but the fine-detail kind that has fallen in love with amigurumi. the yarn world always seemed odd, even for my eccentric tastes. now that i’ve woven my way in i have found a meditative practice that results in adorable plush critters. leading me to believe that even the oddest sounding hobby can have a world of undiscovered fun.
the sun stands steadfast along our journey. a reminder there is a future coming. of unknown consequences. a time where our surroundings look remarkably different. breezes with less breath. the seeds knowing that we shirked the issues of now. while the sun still sets on a land long forgotten. fields washed away into dust. my embers long absorbed by the soil. but the metal, she will remain.
travelers in time. we glide on beams. avoiding the shadows. how many times have we been here. will we be here again. different copies of ourselves. replacements. place holders. clones and the like. reliving the same until we break free. find a glow to transport our likeness elsewhere in the void. leaving behind a shell. duller. one that is destined to repeat history. but the stand-in will not be me. she will not shine as vibrantly. for my uniqueness has vaulted off to behold a new.
the ethereal expanse above turns on its kaleidoscope. displaying hues of time. each shade sparking memories of places visited. faces remembered. experiences never forgotten. clouds of nostalgia accumulate overhead. in my sunset i find longing. for those spaces and faces that stroll under a different sky. to want to share this moment with them all. wrap us in the spectrum of sunset. and fade the day together.
summer days infuse the fibers of my being with vibes that only this season can provide. the weather strikes a perfect balance of breeze and soul-warming sun. ingredients come together to form the best home-made blackberry ice cream that has ever graced this kitchen counter. pillows turn to weapons and laughter echoes as battle songs. the culmination of such little life moments is a manic state of happiness. a frenzied high that i’m clinging to. for the value of these days comes from their fleeting nature. so while the mood strikes, grab a plush weapon and join in the good times.