Wednesday, April 18, 2012

reaching through your senses

"Come on" she said, "You've got to squish your toes in it for it to really feel good!"

 Now walking through algae-ridden mud barefoot was pretty much at the bottom of my checklist of things to do that day. I'd been "photo walking" with the 9-year old daughter of our friends while visiting them at their home in the middle of a game reserve. We'd progressed from shooting in the confines of their fenced-in yard, to shooting along the suspension bridge that crossed a nearby river. I'd been extolling the virtues of taking note of your surroundings and thought a couple FWIS shots from the swing bridge would be a great idea. She agreed, but thought an even better idea would be to shoot them with our feet in the river instead of over it, which as I'd mentioned before was a bit of a mud sucking trap. I'll admit that although I declined the possibility of slip-sliding through scum, I did take off my tevas and carefully walked to water's edge.

 And here's the thing: although the mature adult in me avoided the slimy green gunk on the road, thereby circumventing eminent disaster (think falling hard on my ass while damaging my livelihood), my newly awakened 9 year-old psyche convinced me that mud romping might be a good thing. Fortunately, I had the real deal in front of me demonstrating, with great relish I might add, the proper way to play in the mud. So there I was, almost 30 years older, being taught by a child the art of letting go, and when I did, all my senses burst into life. The soft film of earth pushing up through my toes followed by the cool, flowing stream to clean them off again. It's soothing melody, background music to our ears, while we indulged in our late afternoon lesson on taking note of our stance in life. And when a fresh breeze reminded us that autumn was on its way, I thought to myself that sometimes, just looking through the viewfinder isn't enough. Sometimes, we've got to jump in with both feet and experience everything, through all 5 senses, and unteach ourselves how to be.

So when I saw meeganz's gorgeous shot of her hand disappearing into that halo of glorious, bokehfied light, I was reminded of my small friend, dancing and playing in the mud along a river, highlighted by a magnificent autumn sunset, just a few weeks ago. "reach for it" meeganz shot is titled, and I did, snapping off a succession of shots as a reminder to do just that. How about you, when was the last time you let go?

Holly ~ Soupatraveler

reach for it
reach for it by meeganz


Kirstin said...

I love that you surrendered to your senses and totally let go! Love it.

Gilly said...

I like that phrase - 'unteach ourselves how to be' It's so easy to get fixed in our ways of experiencing the world. Nice post.

Lisa said...

It's it just a wonderful thing when we can learn and experience things once again through our children. Such a warm feeling.
I love that you let go, and played. Because of that, we get to see a wonderful image. :)

Anna said...

Love your writing style, Holly and you've brought out some great points here! As to letting go, raising our daughter lead to lots of those moments and now that she's an adventuresome young adult, she continues to inspire us to try new things :)

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