They spring up the minute it rains. Even in pots of dry dirt. Weeds. Unwanted. Resilient. Beautiful.
“For this photo challenge, show us what path means to you.”
In the end, the path always leads me home. A physical walkway leading to my front door, such as this one. Or an emotional path leading to the safe harbour that family is for me. Or the inward and expansive path of spiritual journeying. In the end, the path always leads me home.
“This week, share a photo that says anticipation.” What are you waiting for?
When my ackee trees are bearing, I know that ackee and saltfish is in my future.But since the pods haven’t started opening yet, I know I will have to wait a little longer. You cannot rush when it comes to ackee. Wait. Or risk food poisoning. Wait. And savour the result.Maybe next week…
Driving past the old Sangster’s Book Store building in Liguanea last week, I noticed how derelict it was looking and thought briefly about the fact that it had been a Liguanea landmark since my childhood. Then yesterday I saw this tweet:I sent a quick replyand then grabbed my camera and headed for the location to see if I could capture something of the demolition of this old building.
The Sangster’s Bookstores website has a brief history of the business, which indicates that the Liguanea branch was established in 1951.
It was located at one end of the island that sits at the intersection of Old Hope Road and Mona Road, sandwiched between the Standpipe community and what is now the US Embassy, which used to be the Bamboo Pen property.This was the first bookstore that I actually remember spending time at and over the years I spent many happy hours browsing there. It was also a convenient place to buy school books or supplies. During the 1970s, the supply of books became rather sparse, with the difficulties in importing things during those years. Later on I bought my first art book ever at Sangster’s, the most expensive book I’d bought till that point. A beautiful book about René Magritte, the surrealist painter whose work I loved. It cost J$61.65, which was an extremely extravagant purchase for a young teacher whose monthly take home pay at the time was less than J$400.
I still remember the closing down sale held before the store was relocated to Sovereign Centre in the early 1990s; all of the Penguin paperbacks were on sale at sharply discounted prices and I bought a lot of them, some of which I still have.
When I got to the location , the excavator was busy at work, with a couple of trucks being filled with debris.
Much of the building was already gone.The intersection will certainly look very different when it’s all cleared.A young woman there asked me if I liked what I saw; I said I had known the building for a long time, but that it had been in a bad condition. She said yes, it had been condemned and it was time it was torn down. One of the workmen asked me if I was the client, as he had seen me taking a lot of photos. I explained that I was just taking pictures because I remembered the building from childhood. He said they had asked an old man from the community how old the building was. The man was in his seventies and said he had known it since he was a little boy. The workman then wondered what would be built in its place and we agreed that we hoped it would be something that would be a good development in the area.
I’ve spent a little time trying online to find a photo of the building in its heyday, but with no luck. If anyone has one, I hope they might share it. An old building, a Liguanea landmark. I wonder what its full history was.
Sometimes the journey up the rock/mountain/current challenge can seem long and all-consuming.You may be tempted to turn back.But you keep going till you reach the top.And suddenly a whole new world, with new horizons, comes into view!
There is so much that I could say today – December 10, Human Rights Day – but I am just going to keep it simple. There have been many activities online and on the ground this past week, acknowledging the importance of human rights.
Today, I re-read the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, adopted by the UN General Assembly on December 10, 1948, in the aftermath of World War II. It is a document that bears frequent re-reading and far more attention than it gets in our schools. The full document is available at the link above; below is a simplified version of the 3o articles.
The theme for the UN’s celebrations for Human Rights Day this year is:
And it is good to remember that when we stand up for someone else’s rights, we are also standing up for our own. Our country and world are in dire need of more people who are prepared to do this.
I stepped out of the kitchen door and looked up at the evening sky. Venus shone brightly, next to an incredible crescent moon, a slightly bronze crescent against the shadowy full circle of the moon. I stood still, watching for a few minutes.
“I’d love to try and photograph this,” I thought. An amateur photographer still exploring a new camera. I wondered what images it would be possible to capture.
“Later, though,” I thought. And what I needed to do at the time actually was important, not one of those flaky things that often takes precedence in life.
It was much later when I had the time to remember Venus, the moon and my camera. But the sky had changed by then and, even from the roof, I couldn’t find the planet and the moon.
The next evening, I looked at the sky again at about the same time, hoping for another chance. But the sky was really cloudy and though I could see the light of Venus and the moon shining behind the clouds, there was nothing that called out for a photo.
That’s one that got away. One that is imprinted on my memory, but not captured for posterity. There are moments like that, fleeting, stunning in their beauty. They may not stand still long enough to be caught on camera, but a pause to recognise and enjoy them can be exquisite and enough.
“What kind of image might help you relax?” This was the weekly photo challenge. A brief stop on a long drive. No time for swimming. Just time to sit on a dappled beach, under the shade of an almond tree. The sound of the waves, and the crunching of the pebbles on the beach as they moved with the ebb and flow of the water. One afternoon, along the St Thomas coastline, on the drive back into Kingston. “What kind of image might help you relax?” An image like this one.