Witnessing Autumn

Today was one of the best days to observe the gradual “changing of the guard colours” in the vicinity. A day off would have been good but 2 hours break in the middle of the day was also a blessing. We took a walk looking for the first beautiful leaf then the next and the next.

Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished. – Lao Tzu 

Search begins at home

We all live amidst various kinds of responsibilities or pressures. Some of our choices and some which are thrust upon us. Do you remember a lesson in physics on electric circuits, series and parallel? It’s better to have parallel circuits in real life. It would be impossible to live a happy and contended life if all events in our lives are connected in series. To cut the story short, we decided to go out and enjoy our “we time” in nature in spite of our current circumstances. You may find it strange but we plan and change our activities according to the weather forecast 😀

Breathing in, I calm body and mind. Breathing out, I smile. Dwelling in the present moment I know this is the only moment.~ Thich Nhat Hanh

We are happy and satisfied today. Hope you enjoy your day too.

Jo’s Monday Walk

Dawn’s Festival of leaves

A visit to the leprosy museum

The Leprosy Museum (Lepramuseet) in Bergen is housed in the 18th century buildings of St Jørgen’s (St George’s) Hospital, and St. Jørgen’s Church forms part of the old leprosy hospital buildings. The hospital was founded before 1411, and was the central institution for treating people affected by leprosy in Western Norway until its closure in 1946. The present-day buildings date back to the early 18th century. Documents from the hospital were transferred to the City Archives of Bergen in the 1980s.

A famous scientific story is also linked to the cultural monument which was dedicated to St. Jørgen , who was the patron saint of lepers.  

Leprosy, also known as Hansen’s disease (HD). The causative agent of leprosy, M. leprae, was discovered by G. H. Armauer Hansen in Norway in 1873, making it the first bacterium to be identified as causing disease in humans

The Leprosy Museum tells about the disease leprosy and its history in Norway, about life in the hospital and the famous Norwegian contributions to leprosy research. The foundation’s archives are part of the Leprosy Archives in Bergen , which are on UNESCO’s Memory of the World programme.

The institution lived through the centuries as part of the surrounding society, but also separated as a separate city within the city. The nine listed buildings were all rebuilt after the town fire in 1702 , and today they form one of the best-preserved leprosy hospitals in Europe. But the buildings are full of settlement damage, because the ground beneath them is slowly but surely disappearing. 

St. Jørgens Hospital is one of Norway’s oldest foundations and one of Scandinavia’s oldest hospital institutions . Hospital operations date back to 1411, and down through the centuries the hospital has had its place in the Bergen cityscape. St Jørgen church was the parish church for Årstad parish until 1886, and the church was often used for children ‘s baptisms , which came to an abrupt end when it became clear that leprosy is contagious. At times there were 150 patients in the small hospital, and up to three people slept in each of the barely 4 m² rooms. 

Bergen had a pharmacy in 1588, but university-educated doctors are not mentioned until the 1590s. In 1603, Villads Adamssøn was appointed city physician , and it seems likely that it was part of his job to supervise the leper hospital. For a long time the hospital church did not have its own priest . In 1567 it was still the cathedral ‘s priest Absalon Pederssøn Beyer who was in charge of the funerals at Spital’s cemetery , but in 1572 it was agreed with the aging priest Gustaff Olsen that he could be admitted to the hospital in exchange for taking care of the patients’ souls . Halsnøy monastery had donated mass clothes and altar chalice .

At the end of the 17th century, Norway and Iceland were the only countries in Western Europe that were affected by leprosy on a large scale. From around 1830, Western Norway experienced a strong upsurge of the disease. Bergen thus became Europe’s leprosy capital. The majority of patients were poor fishermen and farmers. The last patients died as late as 1946, two women from Fjell and Eivindvikwhich was admitted in the 1890s. 

The museum exhibits the Bergen Collection of the History of Medicine, a presentation of Norway’s contribution to leprosy research and the original laboratory where Hansen discovered the leprosy bacillus, M. leprae. The exhibition covers the hospital conditions, symptoms and treatment. The museum also houses patients’ paintings.

References:

https://no.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lepramuseet

*****

Jo’s Monday Walk

A mid week walk

For what it’s worth… it’s never too late, or in my case too early, to be whoever you want to be. There’s no time limit. Start whenever you want. You can change or stay the same. There are no rules to this thing. We can make the best or the worst of it. I hope you make the best of it. I hope you see things that startle you. I hope you feel things you’ve never felt before. I hope you meet people who have a different point of view. I hope you live a life you’re proud of, and if you’re not, I hope you have the courage to start over again. ~F. Scott Fitzgerald

*****

Yesterday was my birthday and as a gift from the universe, the sun was shining ☀ . We decided to keep it simple and planned a couple of hours hike with some picnic food. There were lots of butterflies of which some were quite bold. On our way up the top we chatted with an elderly couple (age 75+) with whom we got acquainted during covid-19 lock down in 2020. The gentleman had walking poles but they both were in good shape. Walking on steep trails is not easy for their age. The lady chatted with us and told us about her hospital stay due to some breathing problems she got recently. I am sure there is nothing serious as she is able to hike three times a week. After car parking there is a gravel road (toll road) in steep terrain all the way up to the post. The elevation difference for them was from 260 – 600 m. We need no formula to know how fit they both were.

For Jo’s Monday walk

What’s better than a sunny Saturday

I began my walk with this shot. Does it tell the whole story? Are we satisfied with just one shot? “Yeah dil mange more” as we say in India. We look forward to capture more and enjoy more.

The early blooming Rhododendron/Azalea flowers are highlight of the park right now. The flowers are delightful, with fluffy double petals or even single petals. At least it didn’t rain yesterday but there were clouds and some times really dark clouds to hide the sun completely and disrupting the sunny setting. You will notice this while looking at various shots.

I am forever chasing light. Light turns the ordinary into the magical ~Trent Parke

Light makes photography. Embrace light. Admire it. Love it. But above all, know light. Know it for all you are worth, and you will know the key to photography~ George Eastman

 The story is not complete even with so many images. So here I present the overall picture.

Don’t forget – no one else sees the world the way you do, so no one else can tell the stories that you have to tell~Charles de Lint

I have exceeded the three of a kind setting. I hope you don’t mind.

For: Lens artists photo challenge

Jo’s Monday Walk

Six Word Saturday

*****

I would like to thank all my readers for your support. The last Six Word Saturday in April was “When you love what you have” was the first scheduled post. I travelled to India to meet my Mother and opted not to be on social media. Now I am back to base.

Colours I enjoyed during Easter week

Wherever you go, go with all your heart ~Confucius

In Norway, it’s normal to board a plane through both the front and the rear doors.

Hurray! Last week all of us managed to get a couple of days break to visit Alicante, Spain. Our last family trip outside Norway was in 2019, then we were in Florence. The selection criteria for the destination was quite simple, “a sunny place”. We were quite lucky to be able to experience Easter in Spanish way.

This is Easter in Spain. A fitting reminder that Easter is not just about eggs and bunnies; Spain celebrates Easter week with much more dignity than many other countries. It is one of the most important events in the Christian calendar and Spain treats it with the respect it deserves.

People carry enormous statues of saints on wooden platforms, which have been lovingly created by great artists throughout the centuries. There is an atmosphere of mourning, which can seem oppressive to onlookers, particularly when you see many penitents in hooded cloaks with just slits for their eyes. The mood lightens on Easter Sunday, with church bells ringing throughout the land as the Resurrection of Christ is celebrated.

The silence is unbearable. You catch your breath as you try not to make a noise. Thousands of people line the streets, but no-one says a word. Then the sound of marching feet fills the air. It’s the only thing you can hear. Thousands of penitents parade in complete silence. It’s dark too. The only light is from the lanterns of the people marching by, which add to the sombre and somewhat eerie situation. It’s very emotional and some people are choking up at the dramatic scene unfolding before their eyes.

The story of Christ’s crucifixion and resurrection is re-enacted with much pomp and ceremony in many towns throughout the country. However, two of the best places to spend Easter are in the Alicante region – Elche and Orihuela – just a few kilometres apart.

To give us company in this foreign land, rains and strong wind followed us 😀😂. Anyways, it was Spain hence nothing to worry. We thoroughly enjoyed the warm weather and sunshine.

Here are some images taken at the fabulous Castle of Santa Bárbara, located on the top of Mount Benacantil overlooking the historic town, the port and the Bay of Alicante.

Everyday my fitbit crossed the mark of 20000 steps and 2000 calories but then I never counted the calories I consumed 😀

Jo’s Monday Walk.

Lens artists photo challenge

Who adds sugar to a glass of fresh squeezed orange juice?

Reference for the text : https://www.myguidealicante.com/travel-articles/passion-reigns-in-alicante-at-easter

Six Word Saturday (the title 😀 )

Crocuses aren’t supposed to go unnoticed

The present moment is filled with joy and happiness. If you are attentive, you will see it ~ Thich Nhat Hanh

If we could see the miracle of a single flower clearly our whole life would change. ~Jack Kornfield

 If your pictures aren’t good enough, you aren’t close enough ~Robert Capa

Success in life is founded upon attention to the small things rather than to the large things; to the every day things nearest to us rather than to the things that are remote and uncommon ~Booker T. Washington

Six Word Saturday

Lens artist photo challenge

Jo’s Monday Walk

Weekend 135

A piece of land, actually a small burial ground of 12.7 acres in the city centre turns into a crocus field every year during spring. In distant past this place was used to play bowling on Blue Monday (the third Monday of January ) every year, it was a tradition. Later in 1837 it was converted to a cemetery. During the cholera epidemic of 1848–49, the cemetery was expanded, but received its final design around 1860. Ole Bull (a Norwegian virtuoso violinist and composer), and Frederik Meltzer ( a representative at the Norwegian Constitutional Assembly at Eidsvoll in 1814 who is best known for designing the flag of Norway) are buried here. The cemetery was closed as a burial ground in 1919.

To give you the idea about how close I had to go to get the above images.

The landscape

Weekend 133: Welcoming Spring

First crocus

If people did not love one another, I really don’t see what use there would be in having any spring.Victor Hugo

The first Irises of Spring
Snowdrops

I am not sure of the reason for such distracted reflection but I find it interesting.

Stand for what’s right. Make your life beautiful. Make your life meaningful.~ Maxime Lagacé

The day the power of love overrules the love of power, the world will know peace. ~ Mahatma Gandhi.

Lens artists photo challenge

Jo’s Monday walk

Enjoying the three states of water

Old ways won’t open new doors!

Water does not resist. Water flows. When you plunge your hand into it, all you feel is a caress. Water is not a solid wall, it will not stop you. But water always goes where it wants to go, and nothing in the end can stand against it. Water is patient. Dripping water wears away a stone. Remember that, my child. Remember you are half water. If you can’t go through an obstacle, go around it. Water does. ~ Margaret Atwood

You suppose that you are the lock on the door. But you are the key that opens it ~Rumi

It isn’t what you have or who you are or where you are or what you are doing that makes you happy or unhappy. It is what you think about it. ~ Dale Carnegie

Six Word Saturday

Jo’s Monday Walk

Lens artists photo challenge

Weekend 132

A walk in fresh snow

Precipitate as weather, she appeared from somewhere, then evaporated, leaving only memory.~ Haruki Murakami

The secret of change is to focus all of your energy, not on fighting the old, but on building the new. ~Socrates, a gas-station attendant in a book published in the 1980s by Dan Millman. 

To appreciate the beauty of a snowflake it is necessary to stand out in the cold. ~Aristotle

The art of life lies in a constant readjustment to our surrounding~ Kakuzo Okakura (The Book Of Tea)

Jo’s Monday walk

Lens artists photo challenge: change

Weekend 130

*****

जाने अनजाने मैं  बदल गयी। 

हम सब बदलते हैं।  

कभी खुद की खातिर कभी औरों की। 

ये बदलाव एक पल में नहीं आता,

ये आता है धीरे धीरे।

बस कोशिश है की ये बदलाव 

बेहतरी के लिए हो। 

-रुपाली 

*****