Skip to main content

The Debut Post of the Fantabulous Flashback Fridays

As I mentioned a few weeks ago, I decided that I needed to really give myself a bit of inspiration and structure to get this blog back on its feet.

I have more time, now that I'm not commuting and don't really know anyone so don't really do anything (did I just make myself sound pathetic?) and so I may as well take this opportunity to get as many stories down as I can before I forget that they even happened.

But of course, I have also given myself a safety net so that I will not forget what happened.

This, ladies and gents, is a box which D has come to refer to as 'the box we continue to move around with'. I, on the other hand, have a very different name for this box  - it's the Scrapbooking Box.


Yes, that's right, it's the box that holds ALL of the things that one day I will put into a scrapbook and no longer have the box for. And it's a subtle reminder that if not for D, I would probably have many more of these boxes and need to call the experts at A&E's Hoarders Disaster Extraordinaire or whatever it's called to come and dig me out of.

But, luckily, I have someone who keeps my gathering of things in check and I only happen to have this ONE box. It's big, I know, I get it. But it is currently housing EVERY memento we own from all of our 6+ years of travelling.

And so, I've decided each week, to randomly pull out a piece of said future-scrapbook-material, and try to write down here what this piece means to me and why it should go into the scrapbook. In the end, these pieces may just remind me of stories along the way, but either way, it will make me feel just a little bit that it was ALL worthwhile that we've lugged this thing around a few countries and continents, allowing it to grown in size with each departure.


So, here it goes:




Item: A brochure from Versailles
First thought: Our camera battery that day
Scrapbook worthy?: Probably contains the only pictures we actually have of the magnificent palace.


Paris was actually our last continental European stop before our first trip back to Canada from Europe. So, while I'd like to say that the battery dying was due to 'beginners folly" I do have to admit that actually we had managed to visit over 10 other countries and countless cities by the time we reached the city of romance.

It was quite cold in France at that time of year - November - and we had our layers of clothing: scarves and fleece jackets. I can remember wishing just a little bit that we didn't look so backpacker-esque arriving at what was once the home of the leader of France. Perhaps it was a couple of days into our Paris visit and I was already feeling self conscious about the elegantly but simply put together French women, who could have thrown on even my layered attire and looked ready  for a night on the town.


It was so massive, the palace and I get that I'm stating the obvious. But all that kept going through my mind was that this space was once built for ONE family. One guy. And that he spent all of his country's money to get it.

We had seen a lot of artwork and opulence before we arrived at the palace in other cities and so it was getting to the point where although visiting historic spots was still enjoyable, it was getting more and more difficult to be phased by their extraordinary-ness.


And then came the Hall of Mirrors. And its 12.3 height width. And its 73 meter length. And its 10.5 meter width. And I was stunned.

Everything shimmered and shone, sparkled off each other. The mirrors made the hall look even bigger than it was. The cathedral style ceiling seems to extend forever. And the crystal chandeliers had the sun hitting them st so, twinkling and cascading  the light from one end of the room to the other.

I took out the camera and clicked this picture: 

 and then my camera made a beeping noise and out...it ...went.

My first thought was OH MY GOD NOW WHAT? 

Because we had managed to travel over the course of 14 months, on and off, through country after country, train after train, hostel after hostel and NEVER ONCE did my battery die.

And so, after a few moments of panic an ahhh-this-sucks-ing I realised that I had nothing left to do but just observe. View. Explore. See.

I was forced to take myself from behind the little lens (is it still considered a lens if it's a point and shoot??) and simply just soak it in.

Even almost 7 years later, I can remember weaving in and out of every room in that large palace. I remember the gardens, the steps, the intricate tiling, the extravagant artwork, the enormous rooms, the gigantic furniture. It's still vivid in my mind.


Thanks mostly to a brochure we saved, tucked away in a box, that  helped to bring back all those vivid images back to my mind.

Comments

Elizabeth said…
Love this! And can't wait for more of the box to appear here! (and i know the feeling when your camera does that... :)

Popular posts from this blog

I'm baaaack!

Hard to believe that last entry was almost three years ago!

Many moons ago, I set this blog up to chronicle our journeys. Once we were grounded a bit more, it kind of lost its way. I spent some time working on my writing offline, taking on different projects and working full time as a technical writer. It was difficult to keep this blog up. Not for any real reason I can articulate. Just had my words redirected to other avenues for awhile.
But, I'm pleased to say, after over a decade away, we are back in the UK, living and re-experiencing a place we enjoyed in the mid-2000s.
Social media has certainly changed the way we look at blogs. I'm excited to navigate this new world, explore just what people post, what people read. What's better on one of the many new platforms and what's still appropriate for good old fashioned blogosphere.
For now, here's a peek at where we're staying -- in a pretty little village just outside of Oxford. A temporary home for now but suc…

Focus

My regular journaling has significantly improved my mood.

I've been taking some time, twice a week, to polish existing content as well as develop my floating ideas into a more concrete outline.

I've felt this focus for the last 6 weeks that I can't really describe properly. It's as though I've shifted my thinking totally. Writing is my craft. It's what I do, who I am, how I exist. It's like my mojo.

So, I guess, I've gotten my mojo back. My focus, my purpose, my essence.

And it feels good. It feels right. And I am almost understanding more now why the best writing of the best writers happens when they are older, more polished, more experienced, more rough around the edges.

When all the youthful spark has been extinguished and what's left, is the determined embers, that will not go softly, that will not die out. That will continue, fervently glowing, creating warmth and not just drawing attention from its flicker, but pulling people in by it's so…

Room with a view

We've been in our new home for 10 weeks nos and it's feeling more like home than ever.Every day, I sit down at my desk to the most inspiring view.A collection of stories is building. This space makes it easy to gather my thoughts.I've been consumed with a few work projects and am looking forward to collecting my thoughts soon.Writers club is still going ... I was on a bit of a hiatus but hope to get into my routine for fall. For now, boat gazing is helping.