Bump, bump, bump goes the truck along the dusty road, as the vast and beautiful Ethiopian countryside sweeps by. It’s stunning, and I’m enchanted. The road is a reoccurring theme in my work. I’m simply taken by the open road.
My latest series on Ethiopia is all about the road, as I look back on the more than 60 sketches I did while in Ethiopia — almost half from the truck. The road is a central theme. It’s about a journey, not the destination. On the road, you are already there, you’re right where you’re supposed to be, and the road reminds me of this.
I may be on a journey, but no single part of that journey is more important than the next. You may be filled with anticipation for where you’re going, but don’t forget to look out the window and be where you are.
Don’t miss the joy and fulfillment of putting the pen to paper, so to speak, and authoring your own life. May the road and these paintings remind you to stop, take a deep breath and experience the joy of being where you are!
As I take rest in Frankfort overnight before returning home, I reflect on an inspirational, thought-provoking trip. I look forward to using my language of images to express all that was experienced and felt!
From the road…
Um, yeah, happy to have stayed safe.
We stayed safe due to the best, friendliest, happiest, makin’ friends everywhere driver, Jimmy. (Which, to answer the question I asked at the beginning of our journey, was indeed his real name.)
Just about every time we turned around, Jimmy was experiencing the people, from the time we returned to the car to find him borrowing a local bike, to being dressed up in full tribal wear, to dancing and singing with the local children. We felt lucky to have Jimmy along!
The tribes …
The schools …
The players in this adventure: Aklilu, Helen, Elaine and myself … (The scarf over our heads was to protect us from the crazy intense sun — it was 42 degrees Celsius this day. I think our smiles were even an effort.) Moments afterward, Elaine almost fell in a fire. The locals had a blast laughing it up on our account. Always happy to be of entertainment, us ferengi!
Thank you for following my journey! More soon …