Moleskine ~ Worldly Wanderings... Vol. I
Join Skip Hunt on a rich meandering journey illustrated with stunning photographic images and text. A journey haplessly drifting from continent to continent inspired by nothing more than an innocent curiosity for the unusual details of everyday life in various cultures.
Let this moleskine journal guide you on a car efree jaunt through fourteen countries, and ponder the whismy and studied photographic eye of this unique and thoughtful artist.
Moleskine ~ Worldly Wanderings... Vol. I “Welcome to volume one of Moleskine... a wandering chronicle without intinerary or purpose other than to take you the reader on a visual journey of curiosity. There’s no particular order to our journey, and the intent of your host is merely to serve as a bohemian travel guide through the landscape of haphazard traveling.
Take your time, open the moleskine journal at any point and drift from page to page, discovering little portions of texture, a travel vignette, or just a bit of prose inspired by the image itself.
Just sit back and relax as you discover the unique perspective of your host as he recalls memory trinkets and offers visual proof for you to savor along your journey.”
Bon Voyage! Buen Viaje! Happy Travels!
Your Humble Guide,
Santiago ~ Blur â€œA few months ago, I went on a 6 week jaunt through Portugal, Spain, and France. Because I was broke most of the time, I budgeted a few espressos during the day, and cheap wine at night.
Actually, I discovered most of the cafes, brasseries, and bars sold a glass of wine for less than an espresso. So, many times I'd opt for the vino during the day instead. Oftentimes in Portugal and in Spain I'd splurge for Absinthe or Absinto.
So the next three images reflect those smoky-blurred evening... just wandering about and trying to capture the blurred, wine and absinthe-fueled nights.â€?
Santiago de Compostela, Spain
Cool ~ Water
His burgundy turban welcomed me from the street and he'd already placed an order for a nice masala dal and chai for the two of us.
â€œAfter a long hike down from the palace... and manuvering along side the ornamented Indian elephants steadily climbing the along the steep ramparts, I was surprised to find Mr. Balbir already waiting for me inside the cafe.
The heat was now really taking it's toll and all I wanted was to swim in the cool waters sweating from these glorious tin pitchers.â€? Rajasthan, India
After ~ School â€œWhen I think of "abandon"... I don't usually think of someone else being abandoned, but of abandoning something myself. Like leaving what I know, going out into the unknown, and abandoning my normal shell. This image is of a little Vietnamese girl who'd evidently been "abandoned" by her parents to entertain herself.
I snapped this little girl while I was waiting for a bowl of pho in Hoi An, Viet Nam. I do remember the little girl was the only other person is this tiny noodle shop, and she was very caught up in her book. She was mouthing all the character's lines and was very animated as she delivered her lines. â€œ
Hoi An, Vietnam
Autumn ~ Rest â€œTaking the time reveals that which eludes you... that for which you yearn, but has no name. Give the time and she will bare herself to you in all her sacred glory.â€? Toulouse, France
Tiffanyâ€™s ~ Gift â€œThere's a strange light in NYC like no other. It's as if the light has been bouncing around the same old haunts for decades... so much so that it's slightly worn and yellowed at the edges. I'd never been to Tiffany's, but there it was. Dying to see the forbidden treasures under guard inside the luxurious fortress, I wandered about the store oggling the fine sterling diamond-encrusted frogs, and glistening multi-carat dog collars. It was all so glorious and grand... that is, until I noticed my every move was being tracked by stern suited men with ear piece and remote-controlled surveilance cameras. At first I was crushed to be a "suspect". The more I became ashamed of my own poverty, the angrier I got. How dare they! The arrogance! I only wanted to catch a glimpse of decadent opulence... just to dream for a few minutes. I had just as much right to be there as anyone. Soon, I was gradually herded back towards the multi-level security gates and back onto the street. Back to the dirtywater dog steam and roasted chestnut aroma wafting and mingling with taxi exhaust. I took one more look back into the forbidden fortress and wished I had actually taken something from them. Then I caught it... a glimpse of that magically strange NYC light creating a dual reflecting dimension in one of Tiffany's precious display windows... So, when no one was looking... I took that instead.â€?
Display window at Tiffany's, NYC
Plaza ~ Shine â€œLike a swift subway blast of subterranean wind, I was carried around the corner. Into the plaza I wandered and tried to get a grip on what might have happened. After a brief dizzy sensation that I'd blamed on the hot afternoon vapors, it was as if I'd actually drifted out of time and walked right into some forgotten Cuban plaza. I'd never been to Cuba, but this looked like the picture I had of it.
I wandered around the plaza looking for some clue... some evidence that it actually exhisted. But, I remember that it seemed as though no one could see me... like everyone could see right through me and I could move freely undetected. I snapped photos as personal proof that I had in fact been there... in case my mind later attempted to convince me it'd all been merely a dream. Mexico City
Soft ~ Dream “A soft twilight breezes kissed her wanting skin as she dreamt of faraway shores.
The sea’s salted arid cuisine made her hunger for spices and delicacies unknown....”
Somewhere lost in a dream.
Valley of the Shadow
Alone, we are follow an invisible path to carry us nowhere...
â€œInto a brutal harsh desert we are born. Alone.
Alone, we finally arrive at both the place we sought... and from where we first began... so many eons ago.â€?
Sentenced to wander golden dunes of time in search of meaning. Near Merzouga, Moroco.
Mama’s ~ Canal “Drawn toward the glare of life light, I meander in the amniotic amenity... Suspended in the liquid of Mama's love is all could ever want. And yet I still yearn for more... for something other... Overcome by the unknown, I slip through her passage and into the white-hot noise and scream. I know I'll spend the rest of my life in vain... just trying to get back into the womb.”
Natural steam bath near San Miguel de Allende, Mexico.
Varanasi ~ Symphony
Back into the depths of life's soupy stream from whence we came...
â€œDifficult to describe the fragrance of the burning faithful... a life now a sinuous
Carried along sweetly in Mama's arms until we've finally ended this bitter sweet journey....
stream floating delicate above the mother Ganga... The sandlewood dreams of a lifetime... Perfume for the living as we breath-in the misty remembrance of a precious life... now passed...
and... return back into Her mystic... Eternal womb. Dawn on the Ganges in Varanasi, India
~ Fado ~ â€œThe last rights were given... all was lost. He'd hoped for a miracle or for the huddled mass to finally awaken from the wicked enchantment. It was not to be. And so it went... fluttering and battered... slipping out through shuttered window crack... Perhaps one day they could finally see. How furious they'd be! He packed up his rage... folded it carefully, and placed it neatly next to his hope... He closed the pack and made his way down the darkened passage singing a lone sad melody.â€?
Bird ~ Canâ€™t ~ Fly
Chop off his hands, bolt him to the Earth, and gut him...
â€œIn futility amidst all needing repair, he tries but just can't get it to work.
Yet, he still yearns to fly... To take all into the boundless all... To set us all free...
Daily, weight is heaved upon his shoulders... Everytime he tries to break free he's met with yet another obstacle.
One day the shackles will finally fall and he'll take us all soaring into the airy sinuous sea.
Old Foosball Player in Mexico.
~ Gravity ~ â€œDipped down to touch my reflection... And, saw a reality much like mine. As I pondered the reflection, it became more real than the one I had known... Until, I realized the mirror was the truth, and my perception... ...was only the valid twin of all I had dreamed.â€?
Anticipation ~ Gold â€œFlittering tinge of golden joy as soft rays massage the final hour.
Elated expectation hidden from the main event, IS the main event. Always lifting spirit higher than the event itself. Be aware of every moment, and you will awaken to neglected gems of warm enchantment.
The hour of anticipation and electic anxiety that promises untold delight. Snapped in an elevator lobby, 10th floor of the Hard Rock Hotel, Las Vegas.
Free ~ Range â€œRed had worked the edge for some time. He wondered if the slightest vibrations of passing vehicular monstrosities might be the key, and he soon deduced that eventually he might just rattle himself free from the blackened industrial abys. Ever so slightly he rattled himself unnoticed for years... Ever closer... Closer... Closer... He could smell the sweet sunshine breezes wrangling themselves inbetween the twisted crevaces... See tips of mythic verde life strands flowing freedom as once told by the Iron Elders... Believing the hopeful myth with all his rustic might and with every fiber of his battered being... He longed to know. One day... he would know the truth... One day... he would bust out of the darkened corrugated hell in a steely fury and into the free range light.â€?
John & Yoko ~ 2004
Not too many passengers except a dusty dread-coiffed couple. The young fella looked as if he might be Mexican, but his companion was Japanese.
At last a rusty 3rd class Bluebird arrived in a cloud of dry dust. (Contined on following page)
I generally avoid these types because they're fairly clitant if you don't sport the same rasta uniform. And, they tend to attract the policia. We arrived in Wadley and the rasta-boy asked me in English, "Is this Wadley?". Couldn't make out the accent, but it sounded Israeli. I confirmed, and said, "See ya 'round... It's a small place.", then bolted for the hacienda of Don Tomas. The camp compound was deserted so Don Tomas helped me remove some piles of metal rod and wood planks that had taken up residence in my preferred larger tin-roofed cinder block room since my last visit. As always, he re-reminded me not to carry peyote into the town and to keep it out of the camp. He advised to just eat it in the desert and you'll have no problems. In the last ten years I'd rarely seen la policia, nor encountered anyone who'd been busted in the desert, but the 3rd party stories were always rampant so I usually heeded the advice. Off I went into the desert, called Wirikuta by the Huichol, to get my first vomit laden "break-in" trip over with. After the first peyote induced bout with severe abdominal distress, I tend to acclimate and can avoid the whole ugly digestive mess on subsequent journeys. I started out heavier than I should've. Ten plants, but I paid dearly. I won't trouble you with the details, but the ill portion of the excursion lasted 3hrs. After paying my dues, the rest of the evening was quite pleasant. Mescalito finally gave me a break and I was able to drift off into Technicolor dreamland. The next morning, after I'd stocked up on fresh goat cheese, tomatoes, tortillas, and water the young hippy couple stopped by the compound. They'd also taken a room from Don Tomas, but he'd put them up in the camp closer to the railroad track.
A less desirable locale since the train passing feels like a mechanized earth quake every hour or so, but you get used to it. The introduced themselves and we made a bit of comparative travel small talk. After I realized these were the new arrivals that earlier Don Tomas was asking me if I'd indoctrinate in the harvesting and dining of peyote, I asked if they'd be ready to head off in an hour or so. They seemed nervously thrilled to have an English speaker run them through the ropes as they didn't speak a word of Espanol. We all parted to pack the essentials, ie. a few oranges to choke the plants down, a good knife, water, smokes, etc. I was a little apprehensive about volunteering to hang with a couple of dread-headed neo flower children, but I'd recently misjudged the character of one alleged American attorney in D.F., so I figured I'd give these two a chance. As the afternoon blazed, and after we'd all made it past the complimentary nausea hump, we built a nice fire and drifted through loose conversational threads as we gazed at occasional stars shooting down from the milky way. I told stories, that looped back into other stories, and they shared as well. Turns out the young fella had spent his 3 years in the Israeli army, had to do a bit of fighting except he said it wasn't much of a fight, "They had rocks, we had guns." The memory seemed to weigh heavy on him and I asked if he'd ever had to kill anyone. I could actually feel the pain in his eyes, and it hurt me to know such a gentle character had to endure such a horrible experience. He said he thought he probably had, but he couldn't be sure. I changed the subject as much for his benefit as mine. It was a beautiful night and I was sad when they had to move on. I'll miss them, but will look forward to catching up to them one day in India where they now make their home in between trips to Japan to sell handicrafts and jewelry. Near Wadley, Mexico
Fire ~ Ice â€œA cacophony of fire tears at my soul core. grasping for the gates of the last bastion... ...she shreds the last fabric of being. until the illusion completely incinerates... ...left only with a solemn icy clarity.
Taken in New Orleans, Louisiana
All photos and text are protected by copyright and may not be reproduced without expressed permission from the author. Skip Hunt © 2004
Moleskine ~ Worldly Wanderings... Vol. I
“The pleasure was all mine guiding you along on this little sojern. Visit the pages of this photographic odyssey often, and begin planning your own hope bohemian jaunt. In the meantime, we’ll be here waiting for the next time you need to get away for an afternoon. The lack of organization this this book was intended to create a lack of itinery. My hope is that you will enjoy returning to this moleskine often, just flip it open to wherever fate leads you... much like the travels that inpired these images. Happy day-dreaming.” Your Humble Guide,