Windows 3: WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge

The following pictures are, in self’s estimation,  self-explanatory.

View of the East River from Tudor Place, Manhattan

View of the East River from an apartment near Tudor Place, Manhattan

Bus Window, Seoul

Bus Window, Seoul

The Cloisters, August 2006

The Cloisters, August 2006

Jane Goodall on the Wonders of Solitude in an East African Jungle

Self was unable to focus on her book all day.  Whether it was because she had been conned into thinking it would be a good use of her free time in the morning to send entries to various contests, she knows not.  Afterwards, she could have kicked herself.  Contests are so futile.  Why waste any more time on them?  She should have just focused on her writing.  Then she wouldn’t be feeling what she is feeling right now — a sense of utter futility.

Oh, well.  No use crying over spilt milk, as the saying goes.

After The Man came home, self found her senses quite alert.  So now she’s catching up on the reading she was unable to do, earlier in the day.

She’s on p. 50 of In the Shadow of Man, Jane Goodall’s account of the time she spent in Tanzania, studying chimpanzees.  Goodall is now in her late 70s, but apparently still quite active.  In the photographs that accompany this book, she looks to be very young, possibly only in her 20s.  She lived in a small village with no other white person around, and it isn’t clear to self whether she even speaks the local language.  Here’s a passage describing her solitude:

As the weeks passed, however, I accepted aloneness as a way of life and I was never lonely.  I was utterly absorbed in the work, fascinated by the chimps, too busy in the evenings to brood.  In fact, had I been alone for longer than a year I might have become a rather strange person, for inanimate objects began to develop their own identities:  I found myself saying “Good morning” to my little hut on the Peak, “Hello” to the stream where I collected my water.  And I became immensely aware of trees; just to feel the roughness of a gnarled trunk or the cold smoothness of young bark with my hand filled me with a strange knowledge of the roots under the ground and the pulsing sap within.  I longed to be able to swing through the branches like the chimps, to sleep in the treetops lulled by the rustling of the leaves in the breeze.  In particular, I loved to sit in a forest when it was raining, and to hear the pattering of the drops on the leaves and feel utterly enclosed in a dim twilight world of greens and browns and dampness.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

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