Vemödalen


 (noun) Origin: Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows | The frustration of photographing something amazing when thousands of identical photos already exist.

“The frustration of photographing something amazing when thousands of identical photos already exist — the same sunset, the same waterfall — which can turn a unique subject into something hollow and pulpy and cheap.”

ETYMOLOGY: From the Swedish word vemod which means “tender sadness, pensive melancholy” and then combined with Vemdalen, the name of a Swedish town. Swedish place names are the source of IKEA’s product names — the original metaphor for this idea was that these clichéd photos are a kind of prefabricated furniture that you happen to have built yourself.

“Your first 10,000 photographs are your worst.” — Henri Cartier-Bresson

Kathmandu,NepalCape Town S.A from helicopter

Famous Places: Lookoom; Danee; Sidd; pedmar; marta; streets; sarah; crossings; littlemiss; PCOS; roberta; Salsa; Monkeystale

Schwellenangst


Schwellenangst (noun) Origin: German | Fear of crossing a threshold to embark on something new.

ETYMOLOGY: From the German words Schwelle (threshold) + Angst (anxiety).

My dad passed in October and when I saw this word, it brought me back to his passing.  It still causes angst in my heart along with the realization that I have embarked on a new journey.  A journey that will no longer include my father or my mother.

In the U.S. death is viewed with angst, with fear, with trepidation, with not many positive words.  All of these words are true, but more for the living than for the dying.  Even the word passed is a euphemism that makes you think that the threshold is just something you walk through which makes the actual event that much more traumatic (for the living).  Watching someone die is traumatic. Devastating.

The word also brought me back to my time in Nepal.  In Nepal bodies are generally cremated.  They are carried through the street (also generally) and brought to the sacred area where folks sit on one side of a river and 5-9 bodies would be laid to rest on the other side of the river and publicly and openly cremated.  Families would gather on the other side of the river and watch the events.  There would often be food and drink shared and people would come and go from the cremation area.  Anyone could stand and watch or pass through this area.  At first it was super odd to watch but also fascinating.   Kids were playing nearby, monkeys begging for snacks, old people staring into the distance.  Who knows what they were contemplating.  There was sadness of course, but it was an expected event.  Everyone lives and everyone dies.

I actually found it reassuring.  Crossing the threshold is inevitable.  The end is not necessarily the most important part of the journey.  In Nepal, it was a reminder that we are all eventually smoke and ash.  The trick for me is not to be smoke and ash during the years I am passing through right now.  Here’s to the threshold!  Enjoy.

“Life itself means to separate and to be reunited, to change form and condition, to die and to be reborn. It is to act and to cease, to wait and to rest, and then to begin acting again, but in a different way. And there are always new thresholds to cross: the threshold of summer and winter, of season or a year, of a month of a night; the thresholds of birth, adolescence, maturity and old age; the threshold of death and that of the afterlife — for those who believe in it.”
― Arnold van Gennep

Threshold:  Thoughts; Hobbo; blindzanygirl; victoria; purplerays; strangers; heart; compassandcamera; beth; dale; brand; maedharanael; ben; tom; overthinking; shayan; swabby; Yinglan; Ramblings

Day 9 – Miles of Memories


“Not all those who wander are lost.”
~J.R.R. Tolkien

“Wherever you go becomes a part of you somehow.”
~Anita Desai

“What is that feeling when you’re driving away from people and they recede on the plain till you see their specks dispersing? – it’s the too-huge world vaulting us, and it’s good-bye. But we lean forward to the next crazy venture beneath the skies.”
~Jack Kerouac

“We travel, some of us forever, to seek other states, other lives, other souls.”
~anaïs nin

“I have found out that there ain’t no surer way to find out whether you like people or hate them than to travel with them.”
~Mark Twain

“But that’s the glory of foreign travel, as far as I am concerned. I don’t want to know what people are talking about. I can’t think of anything that excites a greater sense of childlike wonder than to be in a country where you are ignorant of almost everything. Suddenly you are five years old again. You can’t read anything, you have only the most rudimentary sense of how things work, you can’t even reliably cross a street without endangering your life. Your whole existence becomes a series of interesting guesses.”
~Bill Bryson

Inspiring journeys: Giseny; journeys; Scenic; mcconnel: Pena; Angela; seattle; nathan; cashmere; bali; Liam; journeyman; andysworld

Favorite faces Favorite places


“For a moment at least, be a smile on someone else’s face.” 
― Dejan Stojanovic, The Sun Watches the Sun

Faces are really beautiful to me.

Nigerian Faces I loved

What do you think is the world’s most recognisable container of information? It’s the human face. We are constantly reading each other and responding.

Jan Chipchase

Faces I loved in Nepal

Who sees the human face correctly: the photographer, the mirror, or the painter?

Pablo Picasso

Beautiful faces in Venezuela

There’s nothing more interesting than the landscape of the human face.

Irvin Kershner

Beautiful and crazy faces in Korea

 

Other posts on faces from Where’s My Backpack

Figments, Middleton, Food Face, Elizabeth, Cee, A frog, Le Drake, Oh danny Boy, Quotidian, Lady Lee, Woolley, Tanzania, Sue Judd, Elizabeth, Mecyme, Regional

Fantastic Kids


While on a coffee “trek” in Nepal, I definitely saw some great sites.  Despite being in Nepal, no one expected trekking to the coffee farm. (In reality it was not a major trek, just a very, very long climb down).

had some harrowing roads to travel

We had some coffee and eventually toured the grounds.  Pretty impressive and more so knowing how difficult it is to grow a coffee tree (it takes 4-5 years for the first fruit).  It’s also a lot of hard work.

After the farm tour, we were able to tour the Kathmandu roasting plant.  Ironically we ended our coffee tour by drinking a cup of tea!!!

However, out of all of the fantastic things we saw on this trek.. the local kids were the most fantastic!!

Other fantastic posts:

  1. Where’s my Backpack
  2. Now at home
  3. Caverns
  4. Le Drake Noir
  5. World and time
  6. Sangria stained lips
  7. Oh the places we see
  8. Traveller on a mission
  9. Paris
  10. Cubus
  11. Deco
  12. Walls