Friday, 2 December 2022

Moments Captured

The parents have taken the family away for their annual summer holiday, this year they have travelled to Norfolk - two boys and a girl.
The girl is me - I am five years old

Having parked our car at the hotel, we three children have rushed down to see the sea. Running barefoot across the warm soft sand to the edge of the sea, I have climbed up on a breakwater. I still remember the joy of the moment, the sun beating down on my face, the sand between my toes, the sound of the waves, the smell of the sea, and the gulls cry. Unbeknown, our father has followed us down, and captured this moment of joy. Do we retain that childlike awe and innocent perception of the wonderment that surrounds us? Or do we become less sensitive to these impulses as we become older? Time does not erode our senses - they may not be as spontaneous, but wonderment remains. 

The following images have captured moments that have brought me joy along with that sense of wonderment.

I am in Cape Town, high up on the summit of Table Mountain. I am totally entranced by these small exquisite orange breasted male sunbirds - Anthobaphes violacea who are feeding on the nectar of the Aloe Vera flowers. They completely ignore my presence, even though I am close enough to touch them.

Cape of Good Hope - the most south-western point of the African Continent. It's early morning; we are the only small group here, but what a great privilege to be able to share this wonderful spot with hundreds of S. African Bank Cormorants - Phalacrocorax neglectus; stretching out as far as the eye can see across the rough sea breakers.

A very close encounter with the 'king of the jungle' in Kruger National Park. Apart from the sheer wonderment of seeing wild animals living in their natural habitat, I was intrigued to discover that not only do some of the animals have pointed teeth and sharp claws, but so too, do some of the indigenous shrubs and trees.

Karoo Acacia

That magical moment when you draw back the shutters first thing in the morning and discover that winter slipped in silently during the night, and painted the landscape bridal white.

Walking in an English Bluebell wood.

We have flown from Delhi to Srinagar in Kashmir lying in the foothills of the snowcapped Himalayas. We are staying on a houseboat in Lake Dal, and are now party to the lake dwellers unique water lifestyle. Lake Dal is where they work, shop, raise their families, and make floating gardens to grow their flowers and vegetables.

Their shallow shakira boats act like a fifth limb as they skim seamlessly across the water; the children learn to paddle a shakira like ours learn to walk. The lake people paddle on one side of the boat only but still travel in a perfectly straight line. Very elderly men sit crossed legged at the end of their shakira's bow or stern, and stand up as if on dry land, without even causing the slightest movement to the boat!


We have left our log cabin in Yala National Park, Sri Lanka, hours before breakfast, and found this beautiful leopard sleeping in a Weera Tree - look at that magnificent tail.   

We admire him, then pass silently below, leaving him in peace.


A particularly memorable moment was encountering this reclusive wild Sloth bear - Melursus ursinus inornatus. It is a Sri Lankan subspecies of Sloth bear, but my excitement was tempered by concerns for this lovely little bear. It is highly threatened with a population of less than a 1000 in Sri Lanka and a wild population that is thought to be no more than 500.

 Sri Lankan Dark Blue Glassy Tiger -

ideopsis vulgaris macrina

Choosing 'moments captured' turned out to be an impossible task - the chosen few being the tip of the iceberg. 

Sri Lanka's national flower

 Lotus flower - Nympheae Stelleta

“The lotus flower blooms most beautifully from the deepest and thickest mud.” – Buddhist Proverb 

"Memories establish the past;

Senses perceive the present;

Imagination shapes the future."

Toba Beta

36 comments:

  1. Rosemary, it is quite clear that the bright-eyed, beautiful, barefoot five year-old has lost none of her enthusiasm for life and the sheer joy of it all. Let us hope that we appreciate its diversity and beauty until our eyelids close for the last time.

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  2. It is so nice to have those memories when watching our photos and have a reexperience!

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    1. Our digital memories make it so much easier now for us to re-experience the past.

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  3. When you and your brothers were having a great time on holidays, who knew that your would become adults one day and would look back on those early days with joy? The more time goes on, the more precious those photos become.

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    1. My younger brother has been gone now for several years, and five years after the first photo was taken a new baby sister arrived making us a family of four children.

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  4. Rosemary, such a joyful photo of you. Your memories are so like mine as we have been fortunate to see all those wonderful places, people, animals, scenery etc. as adults. . . . . . . however, like you, I also recall my childhood days at the beach as perhaps still remaining as my favorite memories. Being lucky growing up on the Devon coast, the beach was so special and coastlines no matter where continue to draw me back even at this late age!

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    1. You are right dear Mary - there are so many things that we do have in common apart from the fact that we also share very similar memories of places, people, animals, birds, and scenery.

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  5. Such a wonderful collection of photos...and memories. I enjoyed every one...but especially the leopard and the little sloth bear. You were so close to those wild animals!

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    1. Seeing exotic animals living as they should in the wild is rather magical - thank you, I am pleased that you enjoyed.

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  6. Dear Rosemary,
    Nothing but nothing compares to the joyful photograph of the 5 year old who is Rosemary.

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    1. Dear Gina - It was one of those fortuitous moments that my father just happened to be there with his camera.

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  7. What gorgeous photos and memories! Thanks for sharing them with us. And you're right -- a sense of wonderment keeps us young. Never lose it!

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    1. Once you give up, I believe that it is possibly a downward spiral.

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  8. The sheer joy of your childhood moment at the beach is so beautiful, Rosemary. The wonder of a child is something to treasure and exercise throughout life, as you have expressed in your gorgeous photos. Memory is a amazing gift.

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    1. We can capture those spontaneous childhood moments so much more easily today than when I was a child - I suspect that I probably did not appreciate the photo at the time, but now I do.

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  9. What a gorgeous childhood photo and memory, Rosemary! Your father must have been thrilled to have captured the moment just so. Your own photos of the world seen through your eyes are a treasure trove of delights; thank you for sharing some today!

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    1. Going through my archive of images has retrieved lots of special moments for me.

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  10. A beautiful and varied collection there.

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  11. Your photo of the lion is my favourite.

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    1. He was a very fine beast - luckily I was sitting in a jeep with a quick getaway driver.

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  12. All wonderful photos and memories but my favourite is the top one of a girl who, obviously, still has a joy in the small things in life.

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    1. I wonder what my father would think if he was still here?

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  13. How great to see these photos of what has given you great pleasure.
    That photo of you - such joy on your face, there are not words for it Rosemary, such a delight to see.

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    1. Living inland and being taken to the sea when you are very young fills you with awe. .

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  14. The photo of you, five years old is just fantastic! So much happiness for the life Rosemary! I say it again, so happy to have found your beautiful blog and all your pictures...
    (Sorry for my old school english too!) and have a happy weekend now, take care!
    Love from the island & Titti

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    1. This is such a sweet comment Titti and I am so pleased that we found each other too.
      No need to apologise for your English - it is word perfect.
      Love to you and your beautiful island💚

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  15. Another brilliant writing and photos about your exciting experience and the wonderment of this world, Rosemary. Childhood is short, but for sure the joy of a five-year-girl is eternal in your/our heart.. I enjoyed travelling around through time and space and am in awe. How thrilling it is to pass under the leopard even when he is sleeping. The people of Lake Dal is fantastic.

    Yoko

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    1. Looking back at moments captured was a pleasant way to spend some time away from the every day activities. It also made me reappreciate those special moments that I have safely tucked away in my memory.

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  16. Thank you for sharing some of your very special moments, and your glorious photographs. What a delight to see your little five year old face, full of joy and excitement. I am sure you remember that holiday very vividly. Magical moments with sunbirds, cormorants, the leopard and more, are so special. Your snow picture brings back my memory of my first experience of overnight snow, in England in 2009. I awoke to a strange (to me) sense of something happening silently outside, looked out the window and the houses and street were dusted in white, and snow was gently falling.

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    1. I am pleased that the snow picture brought back a memory for you too - your first experience of overnight snow here. I hope that it also brought back additional memories from that trip too.

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  17. Lovely post Rosemary and I so loved it that you started it with your 5 year old self in Norfolk on your Summer holiday. Great photos and memories. And do we still retain that childlike awe and perception of wonderment? I know I do.

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    1. I am particularly touched by your comment Rachel - we must all hold on to our childlike awe and perception of wonderment even in our ever changing world.

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  18. What a beautiful post with so many priceless memories. As a little girl I was so excited going to the seaside on holiday, and was thrilled when I saw the sea. I don't think I've lost that sense of wonderment, it just isn't so strong now. I share your concern for the bears and others.

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    1. I believe wonderment remains for us all Polly but without that childhood innocence.

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