Month: August 2018

Pause

 

IMG_4872_Sunrise_05282016_1000x667

 

Pause to reflect on the goodness of Life.

 

Advertisements

What is this?

 

IMG_9437_2018_0711_Spain_Santa Pau_1000x667

 

If anyone happens to stumble by my blog, sees this image and knows what it is… please tell me in a comment.

We were sauntering around Santa Pau, Spain, a medieval village in Catalonia about 1 1/2 hours north of Barcelona.  I peeked around a corner and noticed this, stopped and looked for a bit but couldn’t figure it out so snapped a quick photo and continued my meander.

Your guess is as good as mine.

Santa Pau

 

IMG_9431_2018_0711_Spain_Santa Pau_1000x667

 

Old Door in Santa Pau – 2018

“Travel early and travel often. Live abroad, if you can. Understand cultures other than your own. As your understanding of other cultures increases, your understanding of yourself and your own culture will increase exponentially.”  (Tom Freston)

I am finding this to be true, this quote from Tom Freston.  The more I travel the more educated I am about the world.  The more educated I am about the world the more open I am to new experiences, new ideas.  The more open I am to new experiences, new ideas the more curious I become.  The more curious I become the more I wish to discover.  The more I wish to discover the more open I am of other people and their ideas.  The more open I am of other people and their ideas the more I love LIFE.

Happiness = Travel + Curiosity + Adventure.  IMHO.

Besalu, Spain

 

IMG_8965_2018_0711_Spain_Besalu_1000x667

 

“My message, especially to young people is to have courage to think differently, courage to invent, to travel the unexplored path, courage to discover the impossible and to conquer the problems and succeed. These are great qualities that they must work towards. This is my message to the young people.”   (A. P. J. Abdul Kalam)

The above is one of my favorite photographs from Besalu, Spain.  It encapsulates the colors, the mood, the laid-back vibe of the medieval village.  When I took the image I didn’t even see the woman sitting so serenely.  She was a bonus when I arrived stateside and began processing my images.

Spiritual Connection

IMG_9187_2018_0711_Spain_Lava Parc_Carriage Ride_1000x667

 

Spiritual Beech Trees of Catalonia, 2018

“All journeys have secret destinations of which the traveler is unaware.” (Martin Buber)

Such it was for me. After the tram rid though long-dead, eroded volcanoes we had lunch then showed up again at Lava Parc for our next adventure – a carriage ride to see the beech forest. I kept asking Xavi “are we there yet?” “are we there yet?” and he patiently said “…..you’ll know when we’re there.”

And I did. The carriage lunged up a hill and slowed down in a sea of green – the beech forest. We all grew silent and the guide told us this grove of trees is due to a particular soil mixture that occurred due to the volcanoes. And, these trees only grow here, in the heart of Catalonia, and in Iceland.

We slowly clambered out of the carriage, which left us to hide behind a curve in the road.  Our chance to experience this place without intrusion.  As we fanned out I left the group and went into the forest.  Touching a larger beech tree I began suddenly to weep.  Tears flowed from emotions deep, deep within me, and would not stop.  I wanted nothing more than to lay here in this forest and sob.  Most of my photos are blurred from emotion.  My reaction was not unnoticed by Xavi who, when it was time, came to help me out of the forest.  Tears blurred my vision.  My family, who know me well, gave me lots of hugs and we left the forest behind.  I am weeping while telling the tale.  This was an unexpected experience, a surprise reaction, a truly rare moment that I’ll never forget.

IMG_9192_2018_0711_Spain_Lava Parc_Carriage Ride_1000x667

Lava Parc

 

IMG_9103_2018_0711_Spain_Lava Parc_Train Ride_1000x667

 

Extinct volcano, Lava Parc, Spain

“I see my path, but I don’t know where it leads. Not knowing where I’m going is what inspires me to travel it.” (Rosalia de Castro)

Before traveling to Olot, Spain, I didn’t have much time to research for travel. Therefore, we just took things as they came and delighted in each discovery. We were wide open and accepting…and the surprises were many. Olot is called the “City of Volcanoes” because it is ringed by 42 inactive volcanoes, four being in the city center. One day we went into the countryside just northwest of Santa Pau to Lava Parc. There, we took a slow, rambling tram ride through a lush Catalonian countryside to experience them.

 

IMG_9106_2018_0711_Spain_Lava Parc_Train Ride_1000x667

 

During the tram ride we passed a horse farm – oh, but I could live right here!!! With these horses!!!

 

IMG_9111_2018_0711_Spain_Lava Parc_Train Ride_1000x667

 

Seen from the tram as we travel up the side of the extinct volcano – the soil, which is already being reclaimed by nature.

 

IMG_9117_2018_0711_Spain_Lava Parc_Train Ride_1000x667

 

Before protections were put in place, villagers began mining the volcanoes for resources. You can see that now that they are protected nature is reclaiming the cut portion.