Sunday, May 7, 2017

A Tribute

The County-Jerry and Rex (year unknown)

Travelinma is 10 years old today.  Ten years ago, my friend Jeff Kirlin encouraged me to begin a photoblog.  He had started one and was having lots of fun.  Having just returned to Maine following my first trip to Costa Rica, I had a slew of really great shots. Exotic location plus perfect lighting equals engaging photography, right?  So, on May 7, 2007 I posted a guest photo of a questzal taken with my camera (Panasonic-pocket type) by Ricardo the guide that led us into the Rain Forest on a search for the bird and other creatures that showed up like a sloth.

I had thought of myself as a writer until sometime in high school when the
English teacher marred by piece with a red pen. He offered little encouragement and frankly, I was a bit angry and discouraged. My image of myself as a writer was tentative. In college, my professor Jay Hoar who was a Civil War buff and writer helped me as we wrote volumes and read and read. When my twins were two, Jerry supported me in applying to Stonecoast Writing Retreat.  Lasting a week or two, that experience changed my life.  At that point, I hadn't done much writing beyond professional pieces like IEP and Assessment Reports as part of my teaching job until my youngest brood could fend for themselves.  Again encouragement from a friend Lynn Bonsey led me to the Maine Writer's and Publishers Alliance and my mentor, Susan Hand-Shetterly.  Without nudges, Travelinma would not exist as it is today.

For a long time, I continued to photograph my life, but the desire to marry image and words gnawed at they thirst to express myself in ways beyond photography.  Travelinma chronicles family-in good times and in challenging moments.  Travelinma seeks answers.  Travelinma shows the evolution of a woman who rediscovers herself with every new day.  Travelinma supports those dealing with loss.  Travelinma shows the frailty and the uncertainty of life, as well as the possibilities.  Travelinma records love.

Travelinma is likely to outlive me. Just think of that! Depending upon the technological format that my grandchildren will encounter, it is possible that they will learn about their grandparents and their aunts and uncles living during this time.  On that day in May a decade ago, never did I imagine that a blog, my blog would mean so much.

Happy 10th birthday to my creation, Travelinma.


Lynn said...

I am so impressed that you persevered and kept sharing your observations, thoughts and feelings so genuinely. Your words have an artistry and poetic tone that I admire and I love the juxtaposition with your photos. Keep writing and keep sharing your beautiful heart, my friend.

Mary Ann Reilly said...

Congratulations. Ten years is a long, long time and sticking with the blog, watching it as it matures, changes, grows is important. You are a fabulous writer. I am amazed by what you write, specifically your attention to details and your use of figurative language that conveys so much, so quickly.