Day 43: And now for something completely different.

For most of my life, I’d wanted to live abroad. Perhaps it was my trip to Portugal to meet my extended family for the first time that gave me the bug. Perhaps it was having friends who were also first generation Americans and traveled with their parents as well. It’s likely that at least part of my wanderlust was inherited from my father, who was a bit of a vagabond himself.

My efforts started in earnest in college when I tried for a Rotary scholarship to study in France. I made it all the way to the final set of candidates but unfortunately ended up as the 2nd runner-up. I couldn’t afford the study-abroad program, so I would have to wait.

Graduate school proved itself to be startlingly enlightening in both good and bad ways, and I found myself with my chance to finally have my overseas experience. I got my degree and my TESOL Certificate and headed to Istanbul.

The first few months were gut-wrenching and I needed desperately to get my footing. The things I had to hold onto were few and precarious, but I clung to them with all my strength.

One of the these hand holds were pictures I’d brought along with me. They weren’t just snapshots of friends and family, but scenes from home that I had taken. They also happened to be some of the very first pictures I’d taken with my then-brand-new Pentax. They stayed taped to the wall for my first year. Today, they still remind me not only of learning what my camera could do, but also of finally learning what could really do.

***

From an early morning on my way to work:

Day 41 - Horses

From a bright snowy day at home:

Day 41 - Piano

What things have helped you through hard times?

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4 comments on “Day 43: And now for something completely different.

  1. I love those pics! The piano one makes me feel so calm and secure. I noticed the sheet music, the old photograph…reminds me of my mom’s piano when I was a kid.

    • limr says:

      I love how sort of…timeless that piano picture came out. I still remember that morning. I think I’d had the camera for just a couple of weeks at that point. I had to go to work but the roads hadn’t been plowed yet so I didn’t go half a mile before I had to turn back and wait a while before I tried again. The sun coming in on the piano was just perfect and I took almost a whole roll of film. I have more pictures but haven’t tracked down all the negatives yet. That’s my parents’ wedding photo. The sheet music was something I was practicing at the time.

  2. Lenore Diane says:

    When I am looking to grab hold of a hand, thoughts of the Shore come to mind. I smell the sweet hay combined with the salty air, and I feel the breeze coming off the shore. Works just about every time. That, or I grab a picture of one of my boys being dorky.

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