In the four wonderful months since Guide to Nothing burst from the womb of intellectual friendship*, I don’t think i’ve done a nice informal blog. I had originally planned this one for a calm Friday night, but alas life has been busy, work has been constant, and my poor prose has been somewhat neglected.
So today, as I sat feeling like a cat-in-a-bath with the amount of things I had to do that I didn’t want to do, I thought “no. I will procrastinate with some good old fashioned blogging.” And I thought “let’s pretend i’m somewhere else, somewhere far away from responsibility and a mammoth stack of inevitable tasks.”
“When is the best time to write a blog post?
When you have a million other things you really ought to be doing.” – GTN
A lot of people have a favourite place. Whether it’s a corner of a cafe or your very own bed, a beach in the Bahamas or a house from your childhood. In general I think there’s a difference between liking somewhere, appreciating its beauty and its significance, and feeling a sort of raw ownership of a place that is ‘yours’. Anyway, I just thought it was an interesting thing to think about because as a migrant, I often feel a conflict between favourite places. Recently I visited the village I grew up in. A lot of places are beautiful. A lot make you feel safe and happy. But there is a raw affinity I feel with two corners of this very big world.
Photographs are the property of guidetonothing.wordpress.com and were taken by my very talented sister.
The first is a river that my sister and I used to play in as kids. The stone of the bridge is covered in lichen and moss, and the hills surrounding are an old rich green. It has a close familiarity. It’s as beautiful in the winter as it is in summer. It reminds me of being young and entirely bare to the sensations of living, the vivid contrast of summer warmth and the gasping relief of sharp, icy water.
The second is an anonymous stream in the elbow of two hills. It’s sheltered by alder trees and if you follow it all the way up, it leads to a small waterfall and then a derelict hut. This place is something out of a fantasy book, but has a modesty that could only belong to its very real surrounds. We once followed it for hours and stumbled upon a farmer with a gun, the very last time we went that far! Nevertheless, it’s one of those places of nostalgia where you feel an exhale of the soul.
I would love it if people would share with me their own favourite places. As i’ve said, it can as modest as your own bed on a rainy night. We share this beautiful world, but some places just feel like your own.
“Why do you go away? So that you can come back. So that you can see the place you came from with new eyes and extra colors. And the people there see you differently, too. Coming back to where you started is not the same as never leaving.” -Terry Pratchett
*womb of mutual weirdness etc