He said he wanted to see the world, it’s such a huge world with so much in which to do and discover. He said he wanted to take me with him, sweep me away on an unforgettable escapade, one worth writing home about in gushing, glowing words on picturesque postcards picked up along the way.
I told him it sounded lovely, but what I didn’t say was ‘Yes, I’d love nothing more,’ which would’ve been the truth if I hadn’t been too scared to tell it, fearing the implications and potential complications.
Now he’s gone globe-trotting with another, who took the place I didn’t take, who’s enjoying the sights, sounds, flavors, sensations, pleasures,…life…I foolishly let pass me by. And now I cry, into my Pad Thai from some takeout joint here in town, not even able to enjoy it because it only reminds me of my missed chance, my date with destiny that I turned down.
It’s not just the world travel and sightseeing I’m mourning the loss of– although that hurts hellishly–no, because I can still do that, the world will still be out there, waiting for dreamers like me to explore and unearth its beauteous treasures and off-the-beaten path wonders.
It’s mostly the loss of him in my life that I’m ruing. There will never be another him–some may come close, but not close enough for me. He’s magical, the day’s first sunbeams glittering on bedewed grass. He’s gorgeous, an inner fire that others stop to warm themselves at with his ebullient welcome and never want to leave, that creates this outer glow from which it’s impossible to tear your eyes. He’s intelligent, but never a smug, condescending know-it-all; his generous spirit keeps him from getting too high-minded and heavy-handed.
In hindsight, he’s everything I ever wanted and didn’t know I needed. If I would have thought to make a bucket list, if I was the kind, he would’ve been at the pinnacle of mine.
Note to self
Don’t lose the color in your veins
Beauty doesn’t equal pain
Take your life back today
Live for all the right reasons
Note to self
Don’t lose the sparkle in your eyes
There’s a rainbow after the tears you cry
I wish that you would realize
You’re anything but ordinary
Nothing is more self-destructive
Than pretending to be happy
When everything inside you is
Screaming that you’re not
Each and every moment in time
Can be the heartbeat of a bucket list
Love yourself and never give in
Neither will be easy
But soon, you won’t be able to tell the difference
Note to self
Don’t lose the truth in your smile
Letting a demon steal it would be vile
Take your pride back today
You don’t owe anyone an explanation
Note to self
Don’t lose the universe in your heart
It’s better to grow with broken parts
I hope you’ll be reminded
That true love is never one-sided
I know you have dreams
It’s never too late
To bring them to life
You want to be seen
To find your place in the world
To find a home
These dreams didn’t die
They’ve lived inside you all along
Time and trying are the same
Stunning aurora over the White Mountains National Recreation Area, north of Fairbanks, Alaska.
It was interesting to see how dynamic and fickle the display was, going from a dim glow to bright dancing molten light pouring from the skies in a matter of 30 seconds. I have never seen or photographed anything in the night sky that compares!
-Photos this week by Bob Wick, BLM Wilderness Specialist
#TravelTuesday with Guest Photographer Bob Wick to Northern Arizona’s Vermilion Cliffs!
Some of my favorite photo locations are in the Vermilion Cliffs National Monument, located in northern Arizona along the Utah border. The area contains colorful sculpted rock formations that are beyond description. Most famous is “The Wave” which has a very limited number of entry permits issued through a lottery to protect its unique and fragile features. However, South Coyote Buttes (permit required) and the White Pocket (no permit needed) offer equally spectacular and unique formations. The area offers year-round photo opportunities, although winter access to remote locations may be blocked by snow, and back roads become impassible when wet at any time of year. Summer visitors should bring plenty of water and plan outings to avoid the unrelenting mid-day sun.
Photo tip: The many slickrock basins hold water at certain times and provide for great reflections of the adjoining formations. To capture water reflections, photograph in early morning and late evening when glare is lower and the water is more likely to be calm. Optimally the sun should be shining on the subject that is being reflected. Interesting skies with textured clouds also make excellent reflection subjects.
The Vermilion Cliffs themselves form a dramatic rampart in the southern part of the monument and offer endless photo angles. Make sure to stop at the California condor release site, just two miles up House Rock Road from the main highway. The majestic condors are visible year-round at the site which is used to reintroduce them into the wild. A very long telephoto lens is needed to get good photos of the condors.
Photo tip: The “golden hour”, such as the time close to sunrise and sunset, almost always offers the best light for photography and this is especially true in the Vermilion Cliffs and other areas of the Colorado Plateau. Here the rock colors come alive with vibrant reds, oranges and golds with low sun angles, but become washed out during the mid-day. Photographing with sidelight (camera pointed 90 degrees from the sun) will ensure that you have more texture and three dimensional qualities to your images.