Yeah, that’s not the word you expected…just think on it a bit and it will make sense. Before I get started here, so it’s said, we are back from our trip and have been for over two months now. Part of my resistance to continuing with this blog is due to my concern that my writing may not have the same flow that it did while on the trip. Upon exploring this with a dear friend, I’ve decided to go ahead and share some of the pieces that I started while traveling. Once I’m done that, I’m going to think long and hard and continue posting until each day of the voyage is accounted for. After that, who knows what I’ll write. Maybe it will transform into something else new and exciting!
This post was inspired by my mom. She will know why.
I was in the shower one night on our trip complaining to myself about how exhausted and cranky I was, thinking there was no possible way for me to write at all. I imagined it would come out all wrong, I’d sound like an idiot and then there would be the rambling. So I thought that instead of writing about the wheres and the whats, that I would write about some of the other subjects contained within my pictures.
Nature thrills me. Relentless ocean waves crashing against jagged, rocky cliffs fill me with wicked, unabashed energy. I celebrate and marvel at vegetation growing in unlikely or, what some gardeners would even call, uninhabitable nooks. My heart leaps and I rejoice when beautiful rocks beckon and I return from walks with overflowing pockets. And I may be telling tales out of school here, but Cameron echoes this enthusiasm when shells appear for him in the most improbable locations; on the side of the highway in Italy or on the dirt floor of a castle falling to ruins in Portugal. This trip afforded new opportunities to explore the call of nature and I am here to regale you with the ways we answered.
While standing on a cliff overhanging the Atlantic Ocean in Portugal, I took pictures from the vantage point of some adorable plants living on top of a volcanic rock and in doing so, actually felt a twinge of envy toward their spectacular view. As quickly as it came on, it disappeared when I realized how ridiculous it was to feel jealousy toward a tiny little plant imbedded in the rock. I still could not help but imagine what this succulent, hen and chick-like plant had seen during its time. I may have gotten a little teary when I realized how tenuous an existence these plants live out there on the rocks but it could well have been the salt water spray from the raucous waves. I truly felt connected in that place of glory, standing, hair whipped by the relentless wind, on the steadfast, resilient rocks, listening to and watching the waves crashing against them. These plants have some of the most interesting yet simple lives and I would be lying by omission if I did not admit to wishing for some of that simplicity and beauty myself.
These were not the only flora observed and documented on the tour. One must keep in mind that we were away in winter and while everything in Canada was dead, abundant glorious vegetation was thriving, calling for their place in my memory. I may have scampered off from time to time to capture these little pieces of heaven and you’ll be relieved to know that each plant received its own photo shoot and was appreciated from many angles. Fortunately, or unfortunately, this means there are a lot of them that I cannot share due to sheer volume. I have picked out some of my favourites from the latter portion of the trip.
We walked often which I’ve noticed we don’t do so much of now that we’re back home. Digression aside, my point is that walking lends itself to the nature experience; even while traversing busy city streets one can come across nature peeking through in the most interesting places. The best thing about nature is that by its nature, it truly is everywhere. (Pay attention. You will soon notice nature everywhere). Spring is finally underway here in Kamloops and I believe I’ve played a crucial role in willing the buds to form on the trees, at least in my neighbourhood anyway. Now that it is a reasonable temperature, I can’t wait to get out for nature walks with my honey. Yes Cameron, this means you. And me. Perambulating soon.
Next up, the continuation of Austria. I owe some pictures from this amazing little town called Hallstatt and the beautiful skull collection we came across there. Thank you for this detour but stay tuned for more Boning in Europe.