Island visit | Elephanta Island, Maharashtra, India

IMG_6061 IMG_6055 IMG_6052 IMG_6047 IMG_6031 IMG_6018 IMG_5859 IMG_5855 IMG_5853 IMG_5845 IMG_5837I found these images this weekend tucked away in a folder. Early August in India was pretty great.

On this day, so many months ago now, TT, Jess, and I made the short boat ride out to Elephanta Island from Mumbai. What I remember most from this place is the color. Everything seemed to glow.

Today in Chapel Hill, I’m wearing fur and its winter, but its just as bright and sparkly as it was in India on this day.

Fortress in the sand

IMG_0018 IMG_0024 IMG_0020Lately, my head and heart have been a lot of places but here. I have been thinking a lot about Mexico, Rajasthan, and Indonesia.

This week I have been to two performances that have changed my life (and I do not say that lightly). My little world rocked, tumbled, and fell and a lot changed what I thought I knew about humans and human nature.

On Monday, I went to see the Manganiyar Seduction and let’s just say I found myself wanting to live and stay in Memorial Hall forever, listening and watching, wanting to dance.  It was entirely magical and most of all it reminded me of how magical the place they call home really is. . . Rajasthan is out of this world and I’m ready to go back one of these days (soon). It was the India I imagined as kid (camels, turbans, bright colors) and I felt like I was living in a hot, fairyland in the desert.

This week, despite all of the life-altering performances, has been challenging to say the least. Thankfully all I needed was Wednesday. And some Amirah, some sun, and some fancy water. 

Crazy, stupid colors

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Amirah in Oz asked me to think of the best places I lived in//visited in NZ and it brought back a flood of good memories. That, and a good conversation on bleachers about how NZ is the greatest place on earth, has had me thinking a good deal about NZ again.

I went through old photos and found these.

Gorgeous, crazy, stupid colorful NZ. I love that place and the life I lived there. Funny to think how different I feel now. I’m stable. Content being here and most of all passionate about things beyond just places alone. It is so easy in a place like NZ to feel constantly and unbelievably excited//inspired by your surroundings, but I’m finding that is possible in most any place. Yes, even here. Even in Carrboro.

It is fun to revisit this place through pictures and words and even more to realize that beauty exists like this. A type of beauty that is uncomfortable//distracting. A place that glows with so much color its frightening.

[Photos: The impossible beauty of the Milford sounds, NZ//Grace Farson]

The place between the palms

palms8 palms6 palms2 palms4 palms7 palms palms3

No shortage of noise, smiles, or affection here.

This wonderful place, my home away from home, was just as good as ever this time around. In part it was even more special because I got to share it with TT.

I miss it already, but know I’ll be back again someday soon.

This time around, we had only one full day back (*we traveled 32 hours one direction just for one day) and it was all worth it. Worth it because its the best.

Simply the best.

[Photos: Bapatla life captured with the ae-1//Grace Farson]

Manikarnika ghat








Some days it is strange to think my world looked like this a few weeks ago.

I haven’t stopped for more than a few seconds since I got home, but yesterday at dinner, I finally sat down and looked through a couple of India photos. These stood out to me.

These were taken on a a typical grey, monsoon day down by the burning ghat (Manikarnika ghat) in Varanasi. I stayed at a place near the ghat and went nearly everyday. Even when I was trying to avoid the ghat, I was always drawn back there.

Varanasi in the rain was a strange this time around. Dirtier, weirder and even more magical and alluring than ever.

I’m so glad I went back. I’m glad that I got stuck there and had time to rest and recover fully before doing India this way. . .

[Photos: Manikarnika ghat, Varanasi//Grace Farson]

Enjoying this story


I know that all I can write about these days is the rain, but it is amazing how much it influences life here.

This morning I woke up early to the sound of the rain and rolled over and easily slept through my alarm. Once I woke up to stay awake, I sat at the table and thought//read//wrote and downed some tea. I wrote a lot this morning about how I could stay. I could stay here and live like this for a very long time.

I’m enjoying the story I’m living here. I find that I more than enjoy this pace of life. It suits me well and I know I will never really leave this place behind. I feel certain that I’ll be back again one of these days.

My time here is coming close to an end and I find that I’ve spent a good deal of time lately trying to savor everything as if it was my first time.

[Photo: New territory. Across the bridge, Letang//Grace Farson]