Wednesday, August 26, 2009

A Time for Everything

1 There is a time for everything,
and a season for every activity under heaven:

2 a time to be born and a time to die,
a time to plant and a time to uproot,

3 a time to kill and a time to heal,
a time to tear down and a time to build,

4 a time to weep and a time to laugh,
a time to mourn and a time to dance,

5 a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
a time to embrace and a time to refrain,

6 a time to search and a time to give up,
a time to keep and a time to throw away,

7 a time to tear and a time to mend,
a time to be silent and a time to speak,

8 a time to love and a time to hate,
a time for war and a time for peace.

Ecclesiastes 3

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

A time for everything under the sun

I know I have been missing in action for the last two months... it seems as if I have gone home and found myself in the company of those close to me and deserted you who listened to my diatribe during the times when no one was close. It isn't so.

I have had a lot to do over those two months... and a hell of a lot of people see... people who's presence and prayers have been my sustenance. And respect was due. Plus, I am nothing without those who anchor me and make requests to God on my behalf.

I also have had a lot to really think about. I lost my balance and I have had to try and find my centre and get grounded.

I have an unchartered leg in my journey ahead of me and I have been forced to be quiet and contemplative in the midst of much noise and distraction. Nothing is perfect, we were never promised beds of roses, but for as long as we have breath, we have the power to make the bed however we feel, with awareness that we have to lie in it, no matter how we decide to do it. Every decision has it's pros and cons. Everything has good and bad. And often times, when good is about to be released in your life, there are storms along the way. The curses are part and parcel of the blessings because it is through them that we learn to recognize all that is good.

It has been a struggle. I haven't been all zen. In fact, many times when I ought to have been, I have been everything but. Even so, I am grateful. My gratitude is for breath...the greatest mercy ever bestowed on man.

Anyway, I am in NYC now. Will keep you posted.

Sorry for the lack of pics. I will post once I get settled.

Blessings all around.

Sonnet 116

Let me not to the marriage of true minds
Admit impediments. Love is not love
Which alters when it alteration finds,
Or bends with the remover to remove:
O no! it is an ever-fixed mark
That looks on tempests and is never shaken;
It is the star to every wandering bark,
Whose Worth's unknown, although his height be taken.
Love's not Time's fool, though rosy lips and cheeks
Within his bending sickle's compass come;
Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks,
But bears it out even to the edge of doom:
If this be error and upon me proved,
I never writ, nor no man ever loved

-William Shakespeare

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Last lick

I leaving Jamaica in a few hours. Going to board one big jet plane with little more than a prayer for the next leg of the journey and a copy of "The Poisonwood Bible" to read. This always gets me ... when you have to pack up your entire life in two pieces of luggage not exceeding 50 pounds each, which parts do you take with you and which do you leave behind?

I am up at 3:00am packing. I waited till the 11th hour. I started at midday today. This is not regular packing. I was forced to unpack things I took from the Island Behind God's Back and repack for storage and a few things to take with me.

Being overweight on a transatlantic trip is no joke. I don't plan on being crucified accordingly. I think I have too many things already, but will just have to make space in NYC if needs be.

I am taking very little with me. No photo album, no wall-hanging, less than 10 pairs of shoes- all for a trip that is supposed to take me away from my home-base for roughly 12 months.

I have learned the hard way that there are precious few things that actually mean the world to me. Handmade bags and earrings by imelda, an old maternity dress cum nightgown that my mother wore for her pregnancy with me that the sat down and repaired and a crotchet tam made by her. Pashminas for feigned modesty, suits in the hopes of a new vibrant career, and music to take me through the motions.

Everything else is expendable. Especially when it comes at an additional charge of USD$175.

I have a few weeks of quiet contemplation in New York before heading to Dubai.

Nervous? If you cut, won't I bleed?

Monday, August 17, 2009

Usain Bolt is the Fastest Man in the World... for life!

He did it again.. He broke his own record.... From 9.69 to 9.58. Third place to fellow Jamaican and former fastest man in the world, Asafa Powell who ran his best time this season though under his PB of 9.74. Tyson Gay of the USA ran second with a national record of 9.71. Every Jamaican is proud today. Jamaica does it again.

And so....

Monday, August 10, 2009

Day 1/365

This is a study, a commitment to shooting everyday with the intention of posting my best or most relevant shot of the day. I will try to post everyday to keep it flowing but know that there will be days when that will not be possible. I still promise to shoot each day though and to update as regularly as possible.

PHOTO INFO: The Pelican Restaurant, Montego Bay, a real Montegobagonian hangout spot for Sunday Brunch. It's been around forever (some decades). I can still say such discriminating crap in this the last of my TwentySomething years.

Sunday, August 09, 2009

My last TwentySomething year...

Today is the beginning of 365 days of the end. The end to my stake as a TwentySomething and hopefully to the attendant TwentySomething drama.

How do I feel about that? Mixed.

Today is also the day I begin my 365 Day Photo Challenge to shoot and post at least one photo per day to chronicle this iconic year in my development.

Happy Birthday to me.

Friday, August 07, 2009

More on Harsh Economic Realities

Blogger The Cloudcutter said...

Sounds a lot like home!
Re the magazine, how many words will they expect for this pittance? And will that include pix? If so, don't take it! You should get extra for the pix and ask them to pay you per word, it will work out better for you.

There is an additional fee for photos, though I am not sure how much. The word limit is 500 words per story with the expectation that features would be longer.
I didn't think it would be so bad but damn! Thirty-five bucks is really embarrassing!

Sheer Almshouse's Response

Isn't it just so sad? How long have they exploited our labour as a people and made us feel that working for naught is the de facto way of life for the poor and humble? Maybe that is a common current shared by us who have been colonized in recent enough times and felt especially by those of us who used to be forced to work for free. Furthermore a sliding local currency makes it even worse.

I will try to negotiate for a better deal, but the likelihood of that happening is slim in times like these when magazine sales are down. I really just need to pitch to bigger publications... aim high and see what happens thereafter.

My ex did it... he pushed himself so hard and for so long sending his working to newspapers until some of the MANY "No's" turned into paid work. Now he is arguably the most highly internationally published Jamaican photog/writer.
He's just that kind of guy.

Furthermore, a lesson that I have yet to learn is that I need to be going for gigs that pay in hard currency. Our local currency is anything BUT hard. It's as mushy as the food you give to a toothless geriatric.

Thursday, August 06, 2009

Harsh Economic Realities

Fact: my little brother just got a fancy schmancy summer job as a honour student of the nation's premier university (as Ivy League as it gets without the lizards) and he just bragged to me that he is being paid nicely. Just how much is nice in Jamaica for a university senior? The eqquivalent of USD$410 per month.

That saddens me deeply. It also brings home the fact that the struggles here are plentiful... and the earnings little.

I had a meeting with one magazine that offered to pay me $35 per story- and I will take it because I believe in the publication and I could use the outlet. Fact is, that labour is very cheap in Jamaica. It may be the only commodity that trades so cheaply. So people who produce the goods, can't afford to buy them...isn't it ironic?
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