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Snippets from Week One, France, May, 2011

stthomasstrasbourg_lefever
Sleep deprivation and malnutrition lead to psychotic tremors.
Boogieman under my bed.

Nobody I know, in situations I am not living, at night, voices in my head; never complete a sentence, vie for attention then fade – conversational scenarios with out conclusion… keeping me awake.

This worries me.

Not moving is like death.

I find peace when I am in physical action.

Rivers: my heart swell.

French countryside is manicured nature; even her farmers have aesthetic sense.

Soft French light in Spring, dreamy butter kisses.

strasbourg_la-daurade_backroom

Unicorns do not live long in Paris.

The young intellectuals have plans to fix the world, always.

Human nature doesn’t change.

Memo from the train: Sète appears as a dichotomy of beauty and trash–her skin embroidered with graffiti, the writing on the wall malignant. Graffiti dominates France, it seems Sète may be king. Because of the natural beauty of Sète, the urban expression seems out of place here, and more a contradiction. This would be an interesting photo document to explore.

stnicholasparis_lefever

I am taking  better pictures than I did in 2003. Thank God.

Micro sleeps continue.  Each time, fleeting seconds, they are disconcerting.

Sleep and food settles fatigue.

Without an audience to read my log, I loose interest in writing my log. Though today it grounds me to make these snippets and recompose myself.

I make a good “Gay Friend” – too bad I am not gay.

stnicholasparis2_lefever

Spiritual pursuits have changed my motivations in my life.

I have become a monk, with out a degree. I am not sure I want an ascetic life.

It always takes me a week to stabilize when I travel, and I always forget this fact, not planning accordingly to be prepared.

It is best to have a hotel in the heart of the action than one 6 miles away or 10 miles…

French women are my favorite to admire. Their beauty is so… ummm.

Paris is still the best working model of a city. Poetic and practical can co-exist.

stnicholasparis3_lefever

Lack of sleep is bearable if I pretend I am on recreational drugs.

(especially euro-dollar exchange): Ridiculously expensive, the taxi in France, bite the bullet, don’t argue, lick my wound each time–do what it takes, just get the job done–don’t feed the snake, learn alternatives.

Remember to breathe.

Phase II of the trip promises to be less demanding than Phase I– Paris I can get around, and with a home base, I might rest.

Having a friend in Paris changes things.

notredamestrasbourg_lefever

Maker’s Mark Sours are tasty.

People are not made to be alone.

Adrenalin is better than coffee in the morning for waking up–make the train to Reims barely by the blow of the whistle.

Pro photogs archive historical works in Reims Cathedral, tethered, major set lighting… I suffer “Medium Format Envy.”

Train conductor Eric shows me mercy from Reims to Paris for using a evening train ticket on a noon train.

galliac2_lefever

Tears flow while gazing at the center tympanum of Chartres Cathedral, listening to choir with voice over audio commentary describing the Royal Portal theology so beautifully expressed in stone: it is the consideration of God’s grace that is so moving and that such grace inspired this offering for us to come by reflection of the grand scheme, individually and corporately. Beauty and Love.

Moonlight Sonata is more wrenching when sleepless and alone.

chartres-yves_lefever

Yves with red poppies bouquet sings to me “San Francisco (Be Sure to Wear Flowers in Your Hair)” for a Euro, then continues through out my visit collecting other Americans for my introduction on his own initiative. What about god’s Grace?

Chartres is under construction and offers me little in new photos. Still, the Royal Portal did bring me tears: Grace of God, Magnificent.

Why we don’t strive… why I don’t strive… to the greatest of our creative artistic abilities to the glory of God, is beyond me. Look what we create when we do. I feel the need to go deeper into my soul.

Where are my peers?

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9 Comments

  1. Posted May 21, 2011 at 12:46 am | Permalink

    I’m here:)
    Keep fighting.

  2. Dad
    Posted May 21, 2011 at 1:42 am | Permalink

    Jeff writes “Without an audience to read my log, I loose interest in writing my log.” Dad’s response – I am your best audience and look forward to reading your log ! Take care of yourself so you can be the blessing God intended you to be.

    Say a prayer for your little brother – he needs your love and Gods support in the coming days. Love you my son.

  3. Jeff
    Posted May 21, 2011 at 5:15 am | Permalink

    Thanks Brother. I am glad you are! You keep fighting too in Germany!

  4. Jeff
    Posted May 21, 2011 at 5:23 am | Permalink

    Dad- you are a prince among men – I am smiling, thank you. I will do – prayers for Greg as well. I love you too Dad.

  5. Posted May 28, 2011 at 7:07 am | Permalink

    What do you mean no audience? :)

  6. Jeff
    Posted May 28, 2011 at 10:39 am | Permalink

    Thanks Buddy …. breakfast Tuesday? I am back in OC on the 29th.

  7. Jeff
    Posted May 28, 2011 at 10:40 am | Permalink

    October – we fight together!

  8. Brian Nixon
    Posted June 1, 2011 at 12:11 pm | Permalink

    Love the photos! But even more, like the interaction between you and Dad.

  9. Jeff
    Posted June 1, 2011 at 12:21 pm | Permalink

    Thanks Brian. The human element. Life is short. Too short.

One Trackback

  1. By Current Status FRANCE on May 20, 2011 at 3:33 pm

    [...] space in  Paris, Toulouse, Albi, Strasbourg, Colmar, Chartres, Reims, and Bourges. Review HERE. This entry was posted in FBA and tagged fba-active. Bookmark the permalink. Post a comment or [...]

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