I suppose it’s been over a year since I posted anything here. There are plenty of reasons for that, but one of the main ones is that I’ve been focusing my writing on an attempt at a book. The style and substance that I enjoy, writing-wise, is better suited to that than this (a blog), methinks. I’ve toyed with the idea of posting a teaser here, just to let a small corner of what I’ve been working on see the light of day, and to see what kind of reaction I’d get. Most likely that would lead to disappointment, though; I’ve long been a writer without an audience, and the paucity of feedback I’ve become accustomed to getting via the internet tends to leave me frustrated. Still, writing is something I’ve always done and looks to be something I’ll continue doing, even if I’m my only reader. For whatever reason, it’s something I’m compelled to do.
Within the last week I reached a new milestone: I’ve now been in Ethiopia for three years. This put me in a reflective frame of mind. But rather than write something (still working on the book – don’t want to confound that with another writing project), I turned to my huge archive of photographs. I wanted to put together a compilation of images that span my time and experiences here, even if done in a somewhat random or haphazard way. This isn’t a new idea. It was easy enough for me to dust off my previous attempt at this, a photo project called Zirzir, and simply add on to where that chronology stopped. It did take a fair amount, but not too much time or effort, to come up with the result you’ll see here. Since I’m currently lacking photo-editing software that has the level of sophistication I prefer for working up images, I used a basic version that would get things close enough for the time being. So what I have here is something like a first draft or rough cut for a photo project that might appear on my website, if and when I get it up and running again. The final product should be a bit better than this, and would include images from my final three months. This isn’t the most ideal venue for photo sharing, either, but I still see it as a few steps up from Facebook, which is amazing in its apparent continual drive toward shallowness and robotic pop culture anti-thought.
What I have here is close enough, and spans my first three years in Ethiopia. Working on these images, it occurred to me that these, if viewed with requisite curiosity and reflection, say most of what I’d want to say about my time here. Of course they could never replace what I’m writing, but they offer, I hope, a different perspective, one that is open to more interpretation. If I have more time I might go back in and give them simple captions, such as place or event names, but for now I’ll present them as images without any explanation, open to the interpretation of the viewer.
… and now that I’ve managed to upload all eighty-odd photos, I can see that the WP-Robot has put them into a more or less random order, though generally opposite of chronological, which simply arranging them by file name would have achieved. Oh, well, fair enough.
One last note to readers: if you see a photo you like, please click on it to see it larger.