Monday, 18 January 2010
I have finally uploaded & sorted through the images from the trip - just in time before the year jump starts away with me. We don’t remember just by seeing, but seeing with your eyes closed helps.
Instantaneously I’m transported to a mild-to-cloudy morning. The weatherforecast hasn’t spoken anything of rain so we head out to find the Paradys. Locals tell us of a manmade cave along the rough coast where the beachgoers don’t venture & we decide to seek this treasure. I’m glad I’m not alone. After a few kilometers of hiking along this beach The Abscence becomes tangible. I’m also glad I remembered my camera - the shield. It’s the courage that lets me see where I would’nt have dared to look.
Diane Arbus’ famous quote comes to mind whilst a vicious wind is circling around us: “A photograph is a secret about a secret. The more it tells you, the less you know.” I believe she was right I think as I’m walking, observing & photographing this untold landscape. The more I see, the more questions I have. The more I realise how little I know.
This wind develops a personality of its own, isolating me from my own thoughts. I’m enveloped by this howl; sand is gnawing at my legs. Luckily I’m wearing glasses to shield off the worst, so I’m still able to see in front of me, like a race horse.
We reach the cave. It can only be reached during low tide. The tide is coming in. I rush to take a few pictures, before the ocean swallows the exit. It feels haunting to know it used to be inhabited. No one can tell us the origin of the cave or what happened to the owner. It’s empty now, that’s all we know & the sea is claiming it back. Not far from it, there’s a cross without a name. More questions.
We decide it’s time to head back. The only other beachgoer we see is a sea lion taking an afternoon siesta on the sand - the terrible wind doesn’t faze him. I take a picture and we startle eachother. The wind is getting stronger. My companion has turned into a bedouin - desperately attempting to ward off the sand with a pashmina. How beautiful she is to me, wrapped up like a sarcophagus... and I think, how similar some people are to landscapes. The more I see, the more I wonder, the more I realise how little I know of them, how little I understand.
She’s my sister & I love her, but do I know her? I don’t know. She keeps on surprising me, the more I look at her the more she reveals shards of her complexity. These are the landscapes that intrigue me most. I feel so privileged to be invited... & asked to stay.
Posted by E du Plessis