Thursday, May 4, 2017

Light, shadow, texture and love part two - Venice and Provence




It was the smallest of moments.

Yesterday morning.

The rain had stopped - it was only pattering anyway - and the sun was reaching through like a loud yawn, the kind that makes your head snap around with surprise. Especially when it belongs to you.

Up ahead a bob of movement, a daughter and mother turning the corner. I followed, drawn.

For the girl was so tiny that I wasn't sure how she could keep herself upright. And yet, she did and was walking. Balanced on her toes, heels aloft, arms raised like wings for balance and head towards the sky, she propelled herself forward. And forward. As if she were flying, barely touching the ground.

And because she was so surprised to have actually not fallen, that she was arriving with each step in this new movement, she laughed.  

Delighted.

With life. 

Such a small creature can shine such great joy. An everyday miracle.



















“To love. To be loved. To never forget your own insignificance. To never get used to the unspeakable violence and the vulgar disparity of life around you. To seek joy in the saddest places. To pursue beauty to its lair. To never simplify what is complicated or complicate what is simple. To respect strength, never power. Above all, to watch. To try and understand. To never look away. And never, never to forget.”

-- Arundhati Roy





I am listening to this today after watching the blazing courage of Emmanuel Macron last night in the final French presidential debate before the elections. It gives me great Hope to have seen him call out so fearlessly someone whose only wish is to separate and destroy. And I was especially delighted that former President Barack Obama gave his unequivocal support today.. "L'espoir est en marche..."


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This post is the fourth in the series of "Little and Big." It is a subject that I love to return to - the importance that the smallest of things can provide in our daily lives.
I think that some of you are missing Provence, so if you would like to visit or revisit the rest of the series, please click the following links:


And have a wonderful weekend!

36 comments:

francetaste said...

What a joyful image, of the little girl. And your other images, of Venice, are each more breathtaking than the next.
I saw a sign today that said "FHaine." Accurate.

SweetRetreat said...

I keep hoping to see a report on Teddy. Have you visited him? Has he been adopted? I still think of that sweet dog and the terrible misfortune in his life. I would so much appreciate an update.

bonnie poppe said...

Shockingly beautiful images, you go from strength to strength, you see what we are all looking for. Le Pen is unimaginable, like Trump. If she is elected I fear for civility, compassion and reason.
Bon

Rissi Cherie said...

Heather, your photos are wonderful, special, and inspiring. Loved your description of the litle girl walking and laughing. We could all benefit from doing that. Have a wildly creative week!

Silke said...

I agree with everything you said about Macron and En Marche! As you can imagine I have seen "le débat" yesterday and was shocked about MLP agressive attacks. Where has the cultural discours gone to?

As I am European with all my heart, brain and body I hope so much that more french people are going to vote for Europe. It is the only solution to avoid hate and war.
I have also seen Barack Obamas support today of course since I am following the french press every minute.

And I hope so much that when I will be in France in July, it will be a France of the future, the one that I can come back to.

Fingers crossed my friend, stay strong, keep on hoping. Wonderful images!

Love, Silke

pooker1963 said...

Heather, so good to see you back in my email. Love these Venice photos. Very Wabi Sabi. Looking forward to next posting. Be well.

Laura said...

Could almost feel the sunshine and hear the child's laughter. What a great moment to share with your readers.
The photos have such clarity with light and shadow.
Hope to see a Macron victory on Sunday!

Joan McKniff said...

Was so pleased to see Obama's video on the important of this election to France, EU and beyond and his support of Macron. Hope French voters are smarter than US voters were.

Bill Facker said...

Ah, the lessons of children ... before they discover politics. Mahalo et Merci, Heather.

loisreynoldsmead said...

ahh, Trattoria Dona Onesta...favorite, favorite place to eat. Will visit it next October staying in an apartment near Frari Church. Your pictures make it so hard to wait. We will be there for two weeks for the third time. What is with the people who say to me how can you find anything to do for more than a day and a half? Just look, just see...it is so compelling...

Judi of Little House said...

Oh, your beautiful photos are drawing me in. I need to revisit beautiful Venice. Maybe I'll get really lucky and see that little girl! It made me smile and think of my grandson and how fearless he walks and how much he adores the outside. At 16 months he is showing me all kinds of wonderful things!

SALLY said...

Not surprised to hear President Obama has endorsed the French voice of reason and compassion. He always knows and does what's right. Oh how we all miss him!

Maria Anagnostopoulou said...

Loved the story of the little girl! We must always remember our "enfance". Your latest posts are full of joy and hope. They give me joy and hope too!

Unknown said...

I am following the French election as closely as I can, and I particularly appreciate your comments regarding it. This election is critically important for France, for Europe, for the United States and for all of the world's democracies, and I hope that its results give us reason for hope. Thinking of you, Leslie in Oregon

edgar said...

Little things do make a difference.

Unknown said...

We need to look for beauty everywhere. Sometimes we need to look deeper. I'm so glad you are hitting your stride again. All we can do is one breath in...one breath out.....repeat.

Ali x


Heather Robinson said...

Oh my, how perfect is that sign! Although in these parts, I would not dare put it up...

Heather Robinson said...

Teddy was adopted but the SPA took him back as the new owner was not taking care of him. He has had a few close calls since then but as he is such a huge and untrained dog (although he was great with Ellie, he did nearly knock me down!), it is complicated for him. The staff love him dearly and I am friends with one of the volunteers who gives me updates.

Heather Robinson said...

I do too. So, at one hour away from the results time - I am going to try and stay positive!! I have to.
Thank you for the compliment about the photos. :)

Heather Robinson said...

What a fabulous wish to send along and such kind words too! Merci...!

Heather Robinson said...

Perfectly said, as always, my wonderful friend! And thank you. Yes, let's stay hopeful...!!!

Heather Robinson said...

Thank you so much. And I love that you see the Wabi Sabi! I do too. Sigh. I want to go back to Venice...

Heather Robinson said...

Yes! Me too. You are always so kind, Laura. It is truly appreciated. xo

Heather Robinson said...

That is why I won't breathe until I know.

Heather Robinson said...

Mahalo for your friendship Bill.

Erin McAtee said...

"Someone whose only wish is to separate and destroy." Really? Can and do you really believe that? Which begs, HOW can you? Do you pay any attention to what he actually says and has been doing in the US? You do not express what is truly in his heart. For Americans to live in freedom, peace, safety, and prosperity. That is his goal. I'm not saying Le Pen would have been the best choice for France and Europe, but in the US and obviously beyond, people are being lied to about who Trump is. So sad. Obama supporters have become poster-children for intolerant hypocrites and free-speech obstructionists, so I doubt you'll post this. I hope I can continue to visit France, but on the current course, I'm not sure my family is safe there anymore. Heather, I admire you on a personal level and I have followed your journey with heart-felt compassion. You introduced me to Ellie, who I'm STILL missing every day, but I can't sit by idly and say nothing while these inaccuracies are floated out there into the world. Seek truth first. "To anger a conservative, lie to him. To anger a liberal, tell him the truth." --Theodore Roosevelt

Heather Robinson said...

I was referring to Marine Le Pen, Erin. Her party is very dangerous here and was formed by several Pro-Nazi supporters. And as an immigrant, trying hard - currently failing, but trying - to make a go of a life in France, I cannot support her policies in any manner. Regardless of what you think of him, former President Obama is deeply respected in Europe and so his backing of Macron was seen as very important just before the election.

Heather Robinson said...

Isn't that something Lois? I love that we share this appreciation for Venice - and that you recognized the signage to a favorite restaurant as well (which is very good to know as I struggled, as all first timers do, to eat well in Venice). I am so hungry to return. And am a bit jealous that you have concrete plans to do so!

Heather Robinson said...

I can imagine, Judi. He is so handsome too.
xo

Heather Robinson said...

I do too.

Heather Robinson said...

Then I could not be more pleased, Maria. :)

Heather Robinson said...

Hope won, Leslie. At least for now. Election night was beautiful here.

Heather Robinson said...

They do. Everything.

Heather Robinson said...

Definitely have not hit my stride yet. But in Venice, it was perfect to stroll. ;)

Regine Karpel said...

Beautiful.

Loree said...

I never get tired of photos of Venice. Ever.