The decisions of life

And he decided that life as it was, did not actually fit him


El espejo de las aguas Río Magdalena, Magdalena, Colombia
The water’s mirror           Río Magdalena, Magdalena, Colombia

They sat together at nights,  before the firewood stove in the kitchen, once having finished with the daily chores. His mother, would narrate stories that described how life was interpreted a long and distant time ago, way before she was born.


Colorido del atardecer Santa Cruz de Mompox, Magdalena, Colombia
Sunset’s colours          Santa Cruz de Mompox, Magdalena, Colombia

Those tales that  at night, were now mostly forgotten. She would relate them in a soft voice, while his father quietly drank his coffee and smoked a cigarette, sitting in his favourite chair.

Vista hacia Santa Cruz de Mompox Río Magdalena, Magdalena, Colombia
View towards Santa Cruz de Mompox           Río Magdalena, Magdalena, Colombia

A tear suddenly appeared in the corner of the old, traveller’s eye, as he evoked those pleasant nights, that also belonged to long ago times in his life.

Ocaso sobre el río Río Magdalena, Magdalena, Colombia
Dusk settles on the river           Río Magdalena, Magdalena, Colombia

 

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The memory of its waters

And his dreams, with all his secret desires, were taken away by the river, as he ran to encounter the sea,  where they were eventually buried  deep in the memories of its waters…


Los cielos del Magdalena El Banco, Magdalena, Colombia
Magdalena’s skies           El Banco, Magdalena, Colombia

Colorido del atardecer Santa Cruz de Mompox, Magdalena, Colombia
Sunset’s colours           Santa Cruz de Mompox, Magdalena, Colombia

Rojos y amarillos en las aguas Río Magdalena, Magdalena, Colombia
Reds and yellows           Río Magdalena, Magdalena, Colombia

 

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The dreams of past lives

In the land where dreams are woven, he found that everything is possible


El cementerio Playa de Belén, Norte de Santander, Colombia
The graveyard           Playa de Belén, North Santander, Colombia

And after much wandering and countless hardships on the road, he finally arrived to lands unknown to men…  the domains where new dreams are woven, and the many-times lived, worn-down dreams, are repaired, together with the failed, broken-down, sad dreams.

Calle del pueblo Guane, Santander, Colombia
The village street           Guane, Santander, Colombia

Exhausted, the traveller sat down upon a bench in the park, while he listened to the soft melodies, gently floating in the air. Along with the musical sounds, the memories of nostalgic occasions, born from the dreams of their composers lightly drifted towards him; the illusions they had forged into sound, when they still walked among the mortals.

Las fachadas del pueblo Galán, Santander, Colombia
The village at noon           GalánSantander, Colombia

He sighed as he recognised some of the dreams that reminisced places known to him in other times of his past life, some of them even took him back to a long gone-by childhood, while others contained the taste of nights shared with his loving parents.  

El árbol de los sueños Villanueva, Santander, Colombia
The tree of dreams           Villanueva, Santander, Colombia

 

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The fluttering of the butterflies

And every time she saw him, she felt butterflies fluttering inside.


La Bajada Girón, Santander, Clolombia
Downhill           Girón, Santander, Colombia

His Dad didn’t mind observing his son’s shoes moving around from limb to limb and suddenly disappearing above him, in the heights of the pine tree.


Vista del Cañón Salto del Mico, Barichara, Santander, Colombia
Vista of the canyon form the Monkey’s Jump           Barichara, Santander, Colombia

On the other hand, his Mom was constantly searching for her son, with butterflies fluttering in her stomach,

Hacia Barichara Barichara, Santander, Colombia
Heading to Barichara          Barichara, Santander, Colombia

particularly when chanced to notice that he had climbed so high and was not visible anymore from where she sat on the ground.

Meditación profunda sobre la vida Barichara, Santander, Colombia
Profound meditation on everyday life           Barichara, Santander, Colombia

 

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A swing in the old pine tree

And when did he stop carrying his yo yo and his favourite marble in his back pocket; when did he leave his childhood behind?


La iglesia Playas de Belén, Santander, Colombia
The village church           Playas de Belén, Santander, Colombia

Actually, that was how the idea of building a swing was born in his father’s mind. In a way, it was due to the fact that he believed Magnifico would immensely enjoy it, and that was what finally happened.

Desde el cementerio Playas de Belen, Santander, Colombia
From the cemetery          Playas de Belen, Santander, Colombia

Also, at the same time however, he built it so that his son wouldn’t spend so much time in the high, elevated boughs of the pine tree, and in that manner achieve a little more peace of mind for his wife.

 

Vista del pueblo Barichara, Santander, Colombia
View of the town           Barichara, Santander, Colombia

But this last part didn’t happen like he expected, for Magnifico would still climb to the upper branches, just like before, and then, he also played, not only in the swing, but also with its thick ropes as well, performing all kinds of daring stunts, during those Saturday picnics in the glade.

Día de la Independencia Barichara, Santander, Colombia
Independence day          Barichara, Santander, Colombia

 

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When the child grows into a man

Placidly sleeping, he dreamt his awakening and in that awakening he lived his life till the end of his days


La Virgen del Río El Banco, Magdalena, Colombia
The Virgin in the river           El Banco, Magdalena, Colombia

And so it happened, that in the quiet waters of the calm and serene pond, fantasy’s ripples eventually came back to find the father, whom without grasping of the full reach of his carefree jokes and comments had unknowingly given birth to these said ripples.

El pescador del río El Banco, Magdalena, Colombia
The river fisherman           El Banco, Magdalena, Colombia

Nevertheless, he enjoyed the dreams where he sat viewing from the Very Important People’s booth, relishing his son’s feats, as he wandered among the heights.  There, he quietly contemplated the daredevil high flights of who was once his little boy, and had finally become a man, and his heart overflowed with pride.

La tienda Galán, Santander, Colombia
One cent less store           Galán, Santander, Colombia

That was how the three members of the family, each in his own way, were hopelessly entrapped in those dreams, those same dreams that heralded the faraway and distant future of that innocent child.

 

En la plaza Santa Cruz de Mompox, Magdalena, Colombia
At the plaza           Santa Cruz de Mompox, Magdalena, Colombia

 

 

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The dreams of an anxious mother

Happy, as he threw the stones into the pond… he watched the ripples extend in all directions


Vista de Barichara, Barichara, Santander, Colombia
View of Barichara Barichara, Santander, Colombia

The family was spread around this millpond on its banks, each and every member confined to their own particular and lonely spot.

Vista del pueblo Guarne, Santander, Colombia
Vista of the pueblo           Guarne, Santander, Colombia

The ripples reached all of them, as it may, as they spread out to tickle not only Magnifico’s quick fancy, for they stretched out even more, to impact the far shores of his mother’s most fantastic imagination.

Barichara Barichara, Santander, Colombia
Barichara           Barichara, Santander, Colombia

For her, the dreams of her son living in faraway places, a shiftless vagabond, risking his life to entertain the crowds of unknown strangers were utterly unbearable. Waking from those nights without end, for that’s what they consisted of, she would go downstairs to start the day, waiting fully stocked with chores. Always loving, she tried to hide her fears, but of course, deep down inside, it would take a long while before her everyday harmony was reestablished.

Magdalena Mompós, Magdalena, Colombia
Sunset in the Magdalena River         Mompós, Magdalena, Colombia

 

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Ripples in the pond

And so he realised the impossibility of moving, without the world also moving along with him.


La barranca Carretera a Zapatoca, Santander, Colombia
The gully          Highway to Zapatoca, Santander, Colombia

As it happens, when a child needlessly plays the morning away, throwing pebbles towards the centre of a pond,

Los arcos del parque Galán, Santander, Colombia
The arches at the plaza           Galán, Santander, Colombia

they fall generating tiny ripples that propagate towards the shores of the pond. So, it was that the innocent and carefree jokes and remarks of the boy’s father, without his ever propping it to happen, transcended arriving to the banks of the fertile imagination of the child.

La Virgen del Camino Guane, Santander, Colombia
Virgin of the roads          Guane, Santander, Colombia

So, it was that the innocent and carefree jokes and remarks of the boy’s father, without his ever propping it to happen, transcended arriving to the banks of the fertile imagination of the child. In this simple manner, it came to be that Magnifico began to feel that strong and fascinating attraction towards this unchartered world, full of vibrant and rich life.


The world beneath the tarps
The world beneath the tarps          Concepción de Ataco, Ahuapan, El Salvador

 

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A world below the colourful tarps

Of things of men I’ve seen more than my share: in their houses and in their lifestyles, and in their way to dress, or not to dress. In their churches and in the things they believe these contain. In where they place their deceased, and in the ways they say farewell to them; and also, in what they say that happens to them once they have ceased to breathe and to talk.


Los juguetes Cementerio de Mompós, Magdalena, Colombia
Toys         Cemetery at Mompós, Magdalena, Colombia

Not only Magnifico wandered into that illusory world of the huge tarps.

Vista a la plaza Santa Sofía, Boyacá, Colombia
Vista towards the plaza           Santa Sofia, Boyacá, Colombia

Of course, with his father’s comments, those casual jokes, the ones that praised his extraordinary abilities and prowesses in the conquest of unattainable heights, these had a vivid echo en his young and very active imagination,

Mundo de ilusiones Popayán, El Cauca, Colombia
Illusory worlds          Popayán, El Cauca, Colombia

and would add and conjugate themselves with the picturesque books he avidly read on the same subject,  about the fascinating and mysterious world of the circus, that lived below the gigantic carps of striking colours.


La iglesia del pueblo Guare, Santander, Colombia
The town’s church            Guare, Santander, Colombia

 

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