We all love taking pictures don’t we? I love taking pictures, especially when I am travelling, it’s my way of immortalising what I saw during that moment. Just look at my Instagram feed from my one week trip to Singapore. I take pictures of whatever interests me (mostly old houses, windows, doors, tiles and street arts!).
Yes, there is no doubt that taking pictures are so much easier (and quite addictive) these days but for this week’s #CeritaJalanAsik (or “Fun Travel Stories” for you non-Indonesian speakers), we’d like to reminisce some of our unphotographed travel moments.
There will no picture on this post, obviously, so I hope my writing can do justice and transport you to one of my favourite French summer memories.
There was a time when I didn’t care less about taking a photo. I could stand in front of a gorgeous old looking house and just admired it with eyes without the need of taking pictures from different angles. I would look at it, admire it and just simply stick that image at the back of of my mind. I bring back this side of me sometimes, but it is getting harder with that itch of grabbing my iPhone growing ever so constantly.
Let me take you back to one perfect summer afternoon in Nantes, France.
It was 2012. I had just finished my first year of masters and had done my year in France, waiting for my next adventure for the semester in Bucharest. I basked in the warm French sun that was so rarely shown in Nantes. That early summer I befriended a Romanian guy whom I met through Couchsurfing. He was new in town and wanted to meet new friends, and I, well, I just simply like meeting new people (and I was new to Couchsurfing). I met him once before, and he was a lovely person (plus he was kind enough to get me ready for Bucharest and gave some tips), so when he suggested that we took a day at one of Nantes’ parks, I immediately agreed.
There was supposed to be a concert at the park. We took the bus to the other side of town, the weather was splendid. I can’t remember the name of the park, but I guess that’s OK.
When we got off the bus nearest to the park, we walked down a street full of old houses made of grey stones with bright flowers decorating its front porches flawlessly. I smelled the intense and mouth watering air of butter, sign of croissants, freshly cooked from a nearby bakery.
I could hear the cackles of children with their parents, excited to see the park. I was giddy too.
The park was quite small, there was a big stage set up in the middle but no signs of bands playing anytime soon. My friend took out some sandwiches (that he prepared himself!) and offered them to me. Sheepishly I accepted as I didn’t prepare anything for this impromptu picnic. We nibbled and talked, and he apologised for not having the correct time for the concert. I had no idea why he was feeling sorry because to me, it was a perfect day, with or without the concert.
We wandered around the park. I wrapped myself around the warmness of the sun and enjoyed the smell of BBQ around me. Every once in a while we would stop and see some of the spots that were purposely set up for this “event”. I remember one stand was a group of people playing a drama, but I couldn’t catch what it was about. I did though enjoy watching them dramatically playing some scenes.
I can’t remember all of the details, but some little parts remained until now. I have no single picture of that day, and I don’t regret it. Sometimes, when I miss Nantes, I think back to this wonderful day and smile to myself.
Before I left Indonesia for France to study, a good friend of mine suggested that I get myself a good camera to capture the beauty of Europe, or rather the beauty of Nantes, my new home.
“When will you get the chance to live there again?! Take pictures! OF EVERYTHING!” she would say excitedly.
But when I got there, I didn’t want to always have a camera on me ready to snap whatever I saw. I wanted to make France my home, even when it was only a year, and we don’t bring cameras around all the time when we are at home right?
I was so glad that I made the decision.
(Though I do have many shots of Nantes on my camera for when I took the time to SEE the place, so not everything was unphotographed thankfully!)
I think this moment has got to be one of my favourite memories of Nantes and I love replaying it over and over again whenever I miss my dear old Nantes and my friend.
When was the last time you left your camera at home and enjoyed a photograph-less moment?
ALSO CHECK OUT!
Noni from Nyonya Sepatu’s unphotographed moment.
Hope our stories can inspire you!
This week’s theme: Best Unphotographed Travel Moment