Lost (Found?) in Translation

September 9, 2016 at 9:44 am | Posted in Malaysia, Me, Photo Tuesday | 4 Comments
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Apples and incense

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The portal to Narnia, or somewhere

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Patriotism tripled

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Family in black and white

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Can you spot the cat?

“Half the fun of the travel is the esthetic of lostness.” — Ray Bradbury

I still spend my days in Penang feeling  a little (sometimes a lot) lost  geographically, culturally, emotionally. Don’t even get me started on the seven-story mall, where I stare at the directory, willing the winding corridors and bizarre numbering system to make sense in my brain, while more spatially inclined people whiz up and down the escalators around me, off to the bookstore on Level 3 or the udon kiosk on Level G. I’m slowly figuring it out … which store might sell ice packs or sunglasses or alarm clocks, where I can sit quietly with a cafe mocha and hide for a while, what route home has an honest-to-goodness crosswalk and occasional stretches of, gasp, sidewalk.

On one of my daily walks — the one from the kids’ school to the aforementioned maze of a mall on mostly residential roads with a dearth of scooters (hooray!) and, alas, pavement  I got to thinking about what has made this experience so different from Romania, which I don’t remember hating or crying over or feeling near-constant malaise about. I realized something. I think it’s the pictures. At least partly. In Romania, I was always looking through my camera lens, even if it was only the imaginary one in my brain. I was constantly looking for colorful, different, beautiful, bizarre things to capture. Here, I just see trash, grime, apathy.

So I’m going to start looking through that imaginary lens again. Looking for photographs. Looking for beauty. Looking for something to endear this place to me. I still expect to feel disoriented. But Ray Bradbury says that’s okay, fun even, so I’ll try to embrace the lostness. I’ll turn toward it. I’ll look for it and capture it.

Here’s my first attempt.

When do you feel most disoriented? Can you navigate a mall like a champ? And what did the lens in your brain capture today?

For Good

June 26, 2014 at 3:28 am | Posted in Bun, Family, Giggles, Photo Tuesday | 12 Comments
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“For each new morning with its light,
For rest and shelter of the night,
For health and food, for love and friends,
For everything Thy goodness sends.”
Ralph Waldo Emerson

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F is “for everything Thy goodness sends.” See more F’s at Jenny’s.

Jenny Matlock

Days of Summer

June 12, 2014 at 12:38 am | Posted in Bun, Lollipop, Photo Tuesday | 12 Comments
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Downpour

Distraction

Delightful

“Summer afternoon — summer afternoon; to me those have always been the two most beautiful words in the English language.” Henry James

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D is for downpour and distraction and delightful. See more D’s at Jenny’s.

Jenny Matlock

Where The Pumpkins Are

October 23, 2013 at 11:45 pm | Posted in Bun, Giggles, Lollipop, Photo Tuesday | 18 Comments
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Which one should we choose?

Wearing sandals in October.

Weighty pumpkins.

Wheeeeee!

Wonderstruck.

“Delicious autumn! My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns.” — George Eliot

Are you wedded to autumn like Eliot (and me) or to another season? Have you made your annual pumpkin-patch pilgrimage yet? Are your Halloween costumes ready to go??

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W is for wheeeeee! and wonderstruck and wedded to autumn. See more W’s at Jenny’s.

Jenny Matlock

Truth #2

October 3, 2013 at 7:16 am | Posted in Bun, Giggles, Lollipop, Photo Tuesday | 16 Comments
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Time.

Training wheels (or lack thereof).

Tricycle.

Tenderness.

Tabletop.

“There is no such thing in anyone’s life as an unimportant day.” — Alexander Woollcott

Are the leaves and acorns falling off the trees where you are? What’s your learning-to-ride-a-bike story? And have you patted a fluffy bunny lately?

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T is for truth and training wheels and tenderness. See more T’s at Jenny’s.

Jenny Matlock

Day Dreams

June 15, 2013 at 2:35 am | Posted in Bun, Family, Giggles, Lollipop, Photo Tuesday | 14 Comments
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“If you want sweet dreams, you’ve got to live a sweet life.” — Barbara Kingsolver

What makes your life sweet? What’s your favorite Barbara Kingsolver book? And what fancy hair trick (à la French braids) can you do?

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D is for dreams. See more Ds at Jenny’s.

Jenny Matlock

My Mixed Bag

April 30, 2013 at 10:30 pm | Posted in Family, Photo Tuesday | 20 Comments
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“Camping:  The art of getting closer to nature while getting farther away from the nearest cold beverage, hot shower and flush toilet.” — Unknown

Camping is a mixed bag for me. Or should I say, a mixed sleeping bag?

I don’t like bugs. Or sweat. Or dirt. Or marshmallows. But my family does. So I go. Twice a year, as per a verbal agreement between my husband and me, I drag myself into the woods, along with three kids, a gigantic dog, an even more gigantic tent, sleeping bags, air mattresses, firewood, s’more fixin’s, peanut butter and jelly fixin’s, water shoes for 5, hiking shoes for 5, stuffed animals for way more than 5, camp dishes and utensils, paper towels, toilet paper, a hefty supply of hand sanitizer, and a thousand other things.

We spend the weekend killing mosquitoes, peeing in bushes, toasting droopy hamburger buns over a campfire that blows smoke in our faces, and getting dirt wedged semi-permanently into our fingernails and toenails. But we also fall asleep to a cricket concert and wake up to an avian serenade. We pick dandelions and track ladybugs. And with sticky, grape-juice-colored fingers, we steer matchbox cars through sand pits and stick tunnels.

So I go. And it’s worth it. Despite the 27 loads of burr-laden laundry that always come home with us.

Does your family camp? Got any favorite ghost stories? And marshmallows — yea or nay?

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“X” is for miXed bag … See more Xs at Jenny’s on Thursday.

Jenny Matlock

Unsolved Histories

April 11, 2013 at 5:16 am | Posted in Lollipop, Photo Tuesday | 13 Comments
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“Have patience with everything that remains unsolved in your heart. Live in the question.” — Rainer Maria Rilke

What questions are you living in? How important are the answers? And don’t you wish they made grown-up-sized rocking horses?

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“U” is for unsolved … See more Us at Jenny’s.

Jenny Matlock

Marking Time

April 4, 2013 at 12:09 am | Posted in Bun, Giggles, Lollipop, Photo Tuesday | 16 Comments
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“Why not just live in the moment, especially if it has a good beat?” — Goldie Hawn

How do you stop, or at least slow, the march of time? What symbolizes time for you? And don’t you wish you could pull off pink ruffles? (I know I do!)

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“T” is for time … See more Ts at Jenny’s.

Jenny Matlock

The Beautiful Stuff

March 27, 2013 at 7:15 pm | Posted in Bun, Giggles, Photo Tuesday | 19 Comments
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“We are cups, constantly and quietly being filled. The trick is, knowing how to tip ourselves over and let the beautiful stuff out.” — Ray Bradbury

What beautiful stuff do you see around you? What’s your best Easter egg hiding place? And what do you like to find inside those pastel plastic shells?

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“S” is for “the beautiful stuff” … See more Ss at Jenny’s.

Jenny Matlock

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