Sunrise

Untitled-1Sunrise

“There’s a new day dawning as a cold rain falls and now’s the time to walk alone”. Man in the rain – Mike Oldfield.

 

When you are in peace with yourself you discover that being alone is not lonely anymore. That you don’t need anybody else to be happy. That the sun looks brighter in the morning, and the stones on the buildings and floor are not as cold as you though. That you don’t need anyone around to make your whole world work.

The world shows the same colors as always did, but completely different. The red will still be red, but warmer. Oranges prettier. Greens purer. And the blues… the blues just disappear to become songs from another era.

A new horizon full of possibilities. And empty canvas waiting to be painted. A thick book of white pages designed to be filled with whatever you want to write. You become the author of your own life, and only one person has the power to decide what will be done afterwards: yourself.

And the place where you began is still there, but is not the same place anymore (and never will).

And the people who destroyed you are still there, but won’t have any power over you from now on (and never will).

And you got broken to pieces, and rebuilt again in the process. You are not the same person anymore (and never will).

But the new you… It is all you need to be.

 

Place: Tavertet

Speed: 1/125 s.

Aperture: f/5.0

ISO: 250

Focal: 58 mm

Model: Alba Pe [FB] [IG]

Rebirth

Untitled-1Rebirth

“You raise me up, so I can stand on mountains. You raise me up, to walk on stormy seas”. You raise me up – Brian Kennedy.

 

And in the less expected moment something magical happens. Perhaps you meet a new person (a future friend, or partner), a new hobby, something you love doing or making… You don’t know it just in that moment but your life from that instant on is going to change drastically. But in that moment, the only things you see are your feelings. All the bad mood, all the depression and all the problems in your mind halt for a few hours. It’s hours after that you realize that it was the first time in months you felt good, even if you didn’t notice it during that period.

And from that moment on everything is different. Every day will become better than the one before, and the true yourself will appear more and more often. The strength you thought you lost to never return appears even stronger. Motivation flows through your veins as a warming sensation and the problems that the day before seemed impregnable are now a new challenge to conquer.

When you turn your sight back you see how important that moment was, the seed of a new beginning, of a new you. And all the clouds vanish, slowly in the horizon, to become no more than a memory for the rest of your life.

 

Place: Bosc de Can Ginebreda

Speed: 1/200 s.

Aperture: f/4.0

ISO: 100

Focal: 105 mm

Pathfinder

Untitled-1Pathfinder

“You gotta make your own kind of music, sing your own special song, make your own kind of music even if nobody else sings along”. Make your own kind of music – The mamas and the papas.

 

What other characteristic could describe better a human being that curiosity? Since we are born we start exploring everything that surrounds us:  first trying to taste everything we can grasp, afterwards just walking in every possible direction without thinking on the risks… Even as adults we try to conquer new places, stepping on the moon or exploring Mars. And this has been like this since our species appeared.

We are fascinated by the unknown, and this fascination is the seed of opening new paths where no one was before. Sometimes they are physical, sometimes the paths are new inventions. And sometimes a new path is not fearing to do something we have never done before. Risking improving our lives doing something in a different way, something completely new, or just forgetting something that we have been carrying with us stubbornly for more time than necessary.

Surf in the “web of the motivation and self-help” for a while and soon you will read: “When was the last time you did something for the first time?”. And although in desperate moments is hard to get out and explore, we must be alert to start doing it once the first rays of dawn appear, and not taking the easy path of remaining comfortably sleeping for “five more minutes” until noon.

At the end, we all walk to a crossroad: the one of the known comfort in the reign of fear, where we know we will be protected of any risk, or the one of the discovery, reigned by curiosity, where we might get hurt again, but also where we might discover something new, something better… the kind of thing we feel we lack in our lives.

Starting a new path requires giving a first step. And even if the entire path turns out to be difficult, usually the hardest point is overcoming the fear to that first step. Because once you start walking into something new, solving the problems  can be even enjoyable.

So… why not risking?

 

Place: Estany de Banyoles

Speed: 1/200 s.

Aperture: f/8.0

ISO: 100

Focal: 24 mm

Flowing

Untitled-1Flowing

“You’ve got to get yourself together. You’ve got stuck in a moment and now you can’t get out of it” Stuck in a moment you can’t get out of – U2.

 

One of the hardest things a human being can learn is to not do anything at all. It’s counterintuitive to our nature. We are a species of problem solvers, animals able to adapt to almost any situation by changing ourselves or the environment that surrounds us. We are able to control the nature to our pleasure and use everything around us in the most imaginative ways. From the fire to the nuclear power. From the wheel to quantum computers. We were born in a planet already adapted to our necessities by our ancestors, and it’s because of that that we feel the necessity of having everything under control.

But in many situations what is required is, precisely, the opposite: to let the time pass, to let the world continue its course without our interference, and just be witnesses of how everything evolves. But instead of just stepping aside and watch, we struggle to do anything else, whatever we can, to feel that we are controlling the situation. And, in many times, we end worsening the situation.

When drowning, one of the best solutions is just to float still, horizontally, instead of trying to swim. This supposes a way of reserving energies to the future, and increasing our lifespan in the long run, until someone else finds us. And emotionally it works the same way. If we try to fight our pain with all our forces we will soon become emotionally exhausted, fighting even our dearest friends and family, and contemplating how we drown into despair while losing everything. But floating still, just without “touching” anything, just accepting every day as it is, might be enough to keep our forces until the time we can effectively fight our problems.

Because if fighting our problems just brings more problems, there’s no way we can win that fight.

Sometimes, the good things take long to come. Toto told us to “Hold the line” and Guinness that “Good things come to those who wait”. Eventually, everything shall pass, like in the ancient Indian tale. In many occasions things are moving around us, even if we are too blind to see them move. We all are tiny worlds with people orbiting around us. People who change us in many ways every day, although sometimes we don’t see it and we feel lonely and unimportant. Or it is not the person we would like it was…

The irony about sadness is that we expect it to be healed by the person who caused it.

 

Place: Estany de Banyoles

Speed: 1/250 s.

Aperture: f/8.0

ISO: 100

Focal: 40 mm

Model: Alba Pe [FB] [IG]

Into the woods

Untitled-1Into the woods

“You find yourself alone, sometimes. Without a home, no protection. You don’t know which way to go. You’re lost, no direction”. To be free – Mike Oldfield.

 

And when in the middle of the night the desperation vanishes and we start to move, this is the feeling: Like wandering in a forest of endless trees, feeling all directions the same. All the effort of rising, of standing up again to find the exit of the labyrinth, just to discover that all the paths look exactly the same and exit might just be an illusion, with not a real existence.

Sometimes we feel confident, in a rush of security, and we make long term plans. We decide what is good and what is bad, and we grasp a clear path towards our objectives. But when we start walking again, the landscape of our feelings drastically changes from one step to the next, and is easy to lose the planned path.

In real forests, the solution is simple: Find a recognizable landmark (a tall tree, a river… maybe the sun). Something that allows you to walk in a straight line until you reach the end of the forest. But when the tall trees of our forests are problems, situations, people around us… how can we find the equivalent of a landmark?

The solution is confidence in a person who knows the best for us. Perhaps is a friend, someone who we trust even if we don’t share its point of view. And even if trusting another person blindly doesn’t make us feeling comfortable, thinking in the “us from the past” as an independent person can help to keep working into finding the solution. If in a previous moment of mind clarity we decided what it was good, maybe trusting those decisions, even if they seem blurry now, might lead to the desired solution. Of course, some decisions taken in advance seem terrible once we are forced to face them in the appropriate moment. But, if that’s the case, we know for sure what to do, so we cannot consider ourselves lost. It is when everything seems diffuse and nothing seems correct when trusting any external help, no matter what, will lead us out of the forest. And even if the path leads us to the opposite direction we wanted, we will be able to correct that once we are outside the forest.

My statistics teacher told me once, many years ago: “The closest you are to something, the less you see it”. Perhaps that’s the reason why we need to really trust someone else when we are lost, even if it supposes a risk: It is worse to roam in circles for the rest of our lives.

 

Place: Esponellà

Speed: 1/80 s.

Aperture: f/5.0

ISO: 200

Focal: 24 mm

Drowned

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Drowned

“Especially at night I worry over situations I know I’ll be alright. Perhaps it’s just imagination. […] Night after night my heartbeat shows the fear.” Overkill – Men at work.

 

Watching the Pantà de Sau (Reservoir of Sau) when it is full of water grants you a wonderful sight of the landscape surrounding it. High steep hills all around the water and trees covering every meter of land. The perfect place for a summer evening getaway. But when the water descends, a more interesting thing appears.

It turns out that under the water there is an abandoned church. It was there before the water, with the rest of a village, and was abandoned when the reservoir was created. Still, the water couldn’t destroy it and, if the level is low, the bell tower of the church appears in the middle of the surface, like the haunted ghost of a better time. If you are lucky, you can reach it with a canoe. If you’re luckier, the water will be so low that you will be able to enter on foot and walk around the ruins, like an archeologist discovering the ruins of an ancient civilization.

It makes me think in how life tends to submerge us in so many kinds of problems, until we surrender and accept to live drowned, accepting that situation as the “normal circumstances of life”. How we tend to accept the pressure just because we feel there is nothing else to be done. When we are in our personal night, drowning in a sea of tears, it is the only thing we seem to be able to perform.

But from time to time, the water flows away, the pressure descends, and the true essence of us arises for everyone willing to see. Sometimes just a part of our true selves, and sometimes we get completely out of the water for a small period of time until it returns again. But in any case, if someone is lucky enough to be there, s/he will be able to see the amazing show of being ourselves, with all of our greatnesses and with all of our beauty, empty of misery and pain.

It’s a pity that the surroundings of us are usually lonely, with no one really interested in looking instead of just seeing. And at the end, more sooner than later, we will feel drowned again, looking for salvation under the sea of problems and worries.

 

Place: Pantà de Sau

Speed: 1/250 s.

Aperture: f/8.0

ISO: 100

Focal: 105 mm

Submission

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Submission

“Oh can’t you see you belong to me. My poor heart aches with every step you take”. Every breath you take – Police.

 

We live our lives surrounded by people of all kinds. Taller, smaller, richer, poorer, more or less intelligent… Every person we interact with every day was born in the same way as us. It’s everything else what make us different from them.

In some cases is heritage: Some people inherit money or terrains from their parents, but in many cases inheritance is not limited to material things. People inherit the education from their parents, the relationships they have made in the past with other people, their fame. You can get a good job because your employer knows our father for years, or be the coolest person in high school because your family was rich enough to pay for your studies, a car, parties… while other people has to spend their spare time working to survive. Or just be tough to be an honest, or a successful kind of person, just because it was the environment you were raised in.

And one of the most curious ways of inheritance is the social one. You can get things done just because other people are willing to do them for you, because they trust you.

But a person, at the end, is just a person. Strip any human being of every possession, physical or social, and you get nothing more than a “bag of dirty water”. Think of the president of any country. As a human being, in the physical sense, has nothing different from any other person in the country. He just decided to take some decisions who lead him to become president because the rest of the people agreed with that. If that president created a new law that nobody wanted to obey… What could he do to accomplish his desires?

People are only as powerful as they want us to believe. And, of course, if you stop believing but all your neighbors still do, you won’t achieve anything. But power, trends, fashions, popularity… is nothing more than a great shadow that people freely decide to obey.

But we keep submitting to people every day, to their wishes and whims, as if they really had actual power over us. Perhaps is a boss, using you as a toy or pawn in their particular game, or perhaps is a sentimental partner, using your faith in the relationship to get more than s/he should. We could break that chain that ties us easily, but we choose to keep it, while we convince ourselves that we cannot do it.

It reminds me to Neil Gaiman’s “American Gods”, where the gods only had as much power as people believing in them. Your word is trustable only if people think so, and you only will have as much power as people accept to give to you. But that power is not real, is just a promise of actuation, a word. Just like money has not real value as its own, it’s just a paper you trust to be able to change for things when you accept it in exchange for other things.

So, we spend our lives submitting to people we shouldn’t, not because they have real power, just because they convinced us they do and our lack of self-confidence obeys, submissive.

 

Place: Bosc de Can Ginebreda

Speed: 1/250 s.

Aperture: f/4.0

ISO: 100

Focal: 105 mm