Thursday, April 27, 2006

Culture and more Culture

It seems every corner I turn and every instance in which I leave myself open to speaking with the numerous people I meet here in Armenia, I learn so many interesting things. I have met a Bulgarian woman who has documented the war on the front lines in Karabagh and received a bullet in the leg, I have met painters who might interrupt a friendly dinner to ask us to pose and reassemble ourselves so that he might have a photo for his paintings, a Russian tour guide who knows the ins and outs of the city and has a deep soul and understanding of human life. My days are endlessly filled with interesting people and their stories.
The trip back to the village was short and sweet. We spent most of the day photographing a nearby 9th century monastery which was breathtaking. Hawk (see picture), myself and Zaven the head of the Parajanov museum in Yerevan were witness to a dramatically beautiful day in Armenia. I felt I could have been in the hills of Ireland. We stopped at Lake Sevan where the mist was just starting to lift revealing the twin churches on the lake. The mountain peaks were sliced by clouds and by the time we got to the monastery the sun made its appearance. In the village the children were happy to see us again. We managed a local kebab on the way home and even went to a concert in the evening.

On April 24 we tackled torrential rains and made our way to the Genocide memorial. At 4:30 there was already a wall of flowers for the 1.5 million Armenians who were mercilessly killed in WWI by the Turks. I said a quiet prayer for my great-grandparents and grandparents. The number of people were overwhelming and continued to arrive into the evening hours.

It is no wonder that we are a nation of artists, photographers, musicians, dancers, poets, writers, can we forget? How can we not come back "home" and give back and make strong what our neighbours have tried to rob us of for so many centuries?


Blogger Hishyeness said...

Wow. Great photos. I especially like the one with the downhill view through the gravestones to the church. The one with the wall of flowers at Dzidzernagapert is beautiful and moving as well.

2:12 PM  

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