A good Italian friend once said to me that there is some draw to the land in Africa. There was something about the sunrises, sunsets, and and the raw beauty of the Democratic Republic of Congo. She was explaining why, despite some of the most scarring experiences there, she wanted to go back. At that time, she was trying everything she could to go back. She did go back and is still there, fighting tough battles but also accumulating many rewarding victories both large and small.
I don’t remember her specific descriptions of the landscape of the DRC, but whatever she said had left this lasting image a burning sun sinking into the plains, with a solitary tree here and there, and a majestic symphony of colours in the sky. It’s probably more Lion King than DRC, but I haven’t made it to Sub-Saharan Africa to replace my misconception with a real sunset yet.
However, this summer, I looked out the window of the loft while watching television and found an incarnation of my imagination. The photo above looks out to the Pacific Ocean in the town of Arcata; the sun is caught between the blanket of storm clouds above and the thick mists that are hovering heavily above the ocean. It couldn’t have been further from land-locked DRC, but it wasn’t any less beautiful. My friend agreed when I took a photo to show her on the spot. Despite all the complaints we have about technology, I am not only grateful that I could share that view with her, but that moment as well, when we passed little packets of data across the continents so our digital selves could be present. She was probably getting up just before dawn.