When getting food requires you to go up and down a mountain, then its value increases tenfold.
Hani man with his crop of corn~ Yunnan
‘Abandoned’, and interesting word. If you like to anagram words as I often like to do, then you will find this: abandoned = a dead boon. A boon is a blessing or something to be thankful for among other definitions. So when we humans abandon something, do we stop being thankful for it and for its value in our lives. And if we take that away from the physical worlds and apply it so something we are gifted with, a skill that we have, a gifting that we received and if we choose to abandon that, wouldn’t we be stopping any possibility of its growth and basically be killing it?
photo taken: an abandoned boat in Boracay
How often do we find ourselves having to go through our children’s toy boxes to throw things away simply because they have outgrown some, some have been just neglected and others are just no longer wanted. And do you recall when you were a child having a single toy that you treasure, valued and held on to for years on end?
The simpler the people the easier it is for them to smile…
Have you noticed how in the so-called civilized and developed countries, you end up praying for the sun to shine to get a half-smile out of people in the street? We have complicated our modern lives so much that we end up dragging ourselves around miserably with the weight of problems that we took on voluntarily. Then you meet people in developing countries whose lives are simple, whose worries, as big as they may be, are straightforward and uncomplicated so they can smile so easily from ear to ear when prompted!
When I met this man in Kashgar and tried to photograph him and talk to him with my conversational chinese and his Uyghur dialect, we just ended up standing there in the middle of midday traffic just grinning at each other like two simpletons 🙂
In me this moment lives as one of life’s precious gifts valued and not to be forgotten.
They say that only when you come so close to losing something do you value it the most…
That is definitely something I have witnessed in Congo and growing up in a Lebanon during the civil war. War can make you more sensitized to the value of life, so when you cry, you cry more deeply, and when you laugh, you laugh with all of your being.
Life is strange like that. It takes a shock to wake us up the wonder of it all. This boy’s smile in the streets of Goma speaks volumes to me about the richness of human existence, the power of our emotions and the joy of simply being alive.
Funny thing with us humans and our values. We seem to value what we no longer have a hundred times more than we did when we possessed it. As long as we take something for granted, then we allow familiarity to set in and we lose the value. It is the same with everything, from the warm sun of a summer day to the so called ‘loved ones’ in our lives. With the cycling seasons, we are never with one of them too long to lose our appreciation of the variety. So maybe familiarity is when we allow our relationships to become seasonless that we forget to stop, reassess, renew and instill new value into them year after year.
Just a thought while I miss the warmth of summer.
We are born into it, we breathe in it for the last months of our womb existence, we are made of almost 70% of it, we crave it first when thirsty before any other liquid, we bathe in it, our continents are surrounded by it from all sides, our atmosphere is soaked with it, we love the sound of it when it falls and meanders, separated from it we die, and splashing in it, is pure joy!!!
From a hot summer holiday, a bit of value for our greatest planetary resource, and thanks for the abundance of it on our beautiful blue planet.