Escape from Tomorrow ~ Machu Picchu

Falling back into the past is easier these days. I close my eyes, search a memory and watch possibilities swim around in my mind. There is a sense of freedom with this escape, many paths branch out and I need only choose.

Today, my mind wanders from above and I find myself looking down on the hallowed grounds of Machu Picchu. Back in a dream, to a place I admire with people I long to see. Memories to embrace.

These days, time has slowed to a point where a calm independence allows my mind to chase down desires and enjoy the peace of yesterday.

Exploration. No better feeling than to look into a window of opportunity and find another piece of life, of truth, to discover. The possibilities of people and cultures mingle together to light up the day. I fall deeper, but reality refuses to let me go.

Outside a siren blares, drowning out dissenting voices. I sit up from my dream; sift through the half-truths and rhetoric surrounding this modern life. The chaos poised to poison the peaceful promise of freedom. Memories are my hope.

Swallowed by the stillness, I dream of the future; a stranger’s hand outstretched to help, united in the wisdom of trust to ascend ever higher.

Even amid ruins of a memory, there are stories of greatness with the poignant reminders of the inevitable struggles of life.

Walking along these terraces, it is hard to tell when struggles begin to turn the tide in this story of greatness. Cracks on the wall and in the voices of people get lost among words of pettiness, ignoring the warnings passed through centuries.

The current stories of today leave me wondering where these memories of mine will take me?

The faint smell of coffee, growing colder as it rests next to me, brings me back to today but my mind is still rolling. To aspire to greatness is a tenant of the human spirit, aspirations fueling new ideas, triggering the evolution of a better world.

A life for the bold is needed. Bold dreamers to lead with courage, and bold leaders to sacrifice and create the possibilities of tomorrow, to inspire society and a great nation.

I take a sip, close my eyes and relax again. True leaders. True explorers. Without, tomorrow fades into a wisp of fog quickly dissipating into an opaque and cold future.

Breathing in the freshness, I wonder if the great societies of the past, seeped with history, can provide guidance? I look at myself on this ledge and understand the fall of innocence is a destiny we all experience in life, a piece of the self-discovery puzzle.

The ringing of the phone snaps me back, and I am surprised to find I am eager to answer the call. A touch, a connection with another, perhaps a catalyst to form a new blueprint of today ~ igniting another idea and another evolutionary leap for tomorrow.

Wrong number, but still enjoyed the politeness of the voice.

Laying back in my mind, on the grasses of Machu Picchu, I take in both the mysteries and destructions of the place. I marvel at the brilliance centuries ago to shape this land into an oasis, bold ideas welded into reality.

Magnificence designed to forever hold promises of the future. A reminder showing even magical places, once deemed invincible, can fade away.

Sounds of politics break the silence outside my window, voices crying out asking who can step up above the pettiness that sink us into destruction. And once again it begins.

How I value being alone. Escaping into new worlds, even with the melancholy twinge it brings this summer day. An apt feeling shared by those around the world I imagine.

The fog lifts exposing an ancient peak, like a curtain pulled back exposing the truth, only to find solace amid the whispers of nature. I like where this memory is taking me ~ down a lonely path. These are the paths where the first step of strength finds those coming together in hope.

The abandoned dwellings, hidden for centuries, now once again break out. This is what I find magical here in Machu Picchu. In the peace of these ruins, abandoned is the weakness that destroyed them. Today there is no fear, no divisiveness, only the acceptance of change and lessons from the past.

The disruption outside grows louder. The fear of today chokes creativity, dulls inspiration needed to thrive. What a damned strange year this has been. I roll out of my chair; pick up my mug with plans to attack the dishes growing in my sink.

Below me, Machu Picchu leaves me wondering, when did this great society stop evolving?

The wisdom of the gritty, soiled and sweat stained hands of those who built this place could hold answers. Greatness is often mirrored by the darkness of greed. Cowards with their soft, smooth hands twisting words with fear to manipulate those who look for truth.

Failure of leadership is a failure in courage, and such rot can only lead to loss of hope. Did Machu Picchu suffer a similar fate?

The clouds part over Seattle, and what I never considered possible today has happened ~ golden rays of sunshine break through and all goes quiet.

This empty Incan Empire, once vibrant with dreams, has now become a bold place of hope, a memory to ignite my soul once again. Putting the dishes away, I am alone for now but it is inevitable we will all come together again.

“Once upon a time, in a land above and beyond the clouds, across cliff-like sloping mountains, fast flowing rivers and mysterious jungles… a land the Spanish Conquistadors could not find, thus being able to keep its undamaged beauty and sanctity.”    ~ Pamela Estevez

159 Comments on “Escape from Tomorrow ~ Machu Picchu

    • Thank you very much, Hien, it felt good to revisit this memory and then write about my mood today 🙂 Wishing you well ~

  1. Good to see you writing again! I’ll be in your state soon, but alas, ’tis on the other side 😕

    • Things are well here – with the Labor Day Weekend coming up, a few more stores and restaurants are opening up, so a bit more positive vibes in Seattle…all waiting for when you do arrive 🙂 Take care in your travels!

  2. A wonderful post as always Randall – always a treat to see your work. Love how you explored the glory and fate of MP and its likeness to our own fragile world. It reminded me of my thoughts when visiting Angkor Wat and the fall of that once-glorious empire. Your opening image with the fog creeping in is gorgeous – tell the truth, did you put it in during post processing? LOL – I know you better than that. A magical moment perfectly captured. Dream on my friend, your reveries are always marvelous reading for the rest of us.

    • Isn’t it something else to see such incredible places/structures like Angkor Wat, Machu Picchu, et. al., and to walk through wondering what it must have felt during those times of prosperity? It does bring the feeling of fragility of societies around the world, and with the mood these days there is a twinge of wonder about whether we are a touch closer to such a reality. And yes, had to laugh at your comment on the post processing – these days, who knows what is possible. What is funny is the mist rolled out so quickly that walking to this plateau to shoot I the scene we almost lost it because I was so slow, just in awe of being there. Still dreaming of returning to Peru. Wishing you a great finish to your summer in your own dreamland of Kaiwah Island ~ Cheers

      • Thanks Randall, yes the thing that especially amazed me re Angkor Wat is the recent discovery of how much more is still undiscovered underground. Apparently it was their inability to sustain themselves after depleting their access to water. Hmmm…abuse of natural resources…where have we heard that before?!

    • Thank you Mary, I hope this year is treating you as well as it can 🙂 Wish you well and take care.

  3. Randall! How you you? You have been missed.
    What a challenging year it has been on an unprecedented scale and on so many levels. It’s a real treat to view your writing and photography again. I hope you and all your dear ones continue to stay safe and healthy.

    Best wishes,
    Takami

    • Hi Takami, great to hear from you. This year is definitely one to learn from and one we will never be able to forget. It felt good to be able to get back to writing again, and made all the more special to be able to reconnect with you. Wishing you and yours a great finish to the summer and take care.

      • Thank you so much, Randall. Your presence has been missed and hope you can come over to Japan once things settle down. For the time being do continue to stay safe and take care!

      • I am very much looking forward to being able to head back to Japan/Asia again – I think a brave, new and better world is waiting for us once things settle down 🙂

  4. I agree with Tina. It’s always a treat to see a post from you Randall. This was a little different with poignant musings about past, present, and future blending, shifting, and seeking out higher ground. It would be nice to have inspired leadership and hope. Occasionally, I see the potential for good in what is happening in the world. Mostly, I’m regressing into skepticism, conspiracies, and frustrations with the state of the world.

    • Agree, this year has brought so many unexpected things, it seems like it is operating on its own timeline. Sometimes it feels like a week/month full of Mondays and then as life often does, magic happens and my optimism 🙂 Thank you, Brad, for your comment it felt good to write about my mood with all the politicking going on around the world, a different slant from what I usually write but unfortunately a topic that seems never-ending these days :-/ Wishing you well, and keep up the hope 🙂

      • Thank you Randall. I’m glad you’ve had moments of magic and hope. Those are rarer commodities these days, at least for me.

  5. Beautiful post, Randall. Excellent photos, as usual! You must have been there VERY early before the crowds arrived. When did you visit there? Things look a bit different (more developed) since I was there in 1979, so long ago! I enjoyed seeing it again through your lens.
    Take care of yourself – these are strange times indeed!

    • What a dream it must have been to have visited MP in ’79 ~ I hear stories of how special it was back in those times (not to make you feel old or anything 😂). We were up very early, one of the first ones to show up…my big dream was to catch both sunrise and sunset on Machu Picchu. Weather was not perfect, but that in itself made it perfect. A big help too, we went during the off-season and I dream to return 🙂 Thank you much, Eliza, and wish you too take care of yourself in these very strange times ~

      • You were lucky to catch Huayna Picchu not obscured with cloud. Yes, it was very different then. I had walked the Inca Trail and arrived just before dusk and (illegally) slept (mostly on rocks, lol) just a few hundred feet up the trail. So glad I travelled while young, as I certainly couldn’t do the same now. 😉

      • Very true, at the start of the hike up Huayna Picchu weather was clear but by the time we got to the top, it was completely shrouded in clouds (zero views, but still so cool…). The weather there blew me away, from downpour to sunshine in minutes ~ you’re making me really wish I was there right now 🙂 I wish I could have been there during the times of sleeping there/on the trails, there is a certain innocence of this period of time you were there that is well expired now. 🙂

      • I do feel fortunate to have toured SA back then. Last year, I read a post of a couple who had gone to Peru and I was SHOCKED at the changes, oh, my, SO built up and touristy. Aguas Calientes was only a couple of wooden buildings perched on the river, and a simple cement pool to access the hot springs. I fondly remember sitting on the porch of a small inn/restaurant, listening to a squawking parrot in a cage at the end and the rushing Urubamba River below. Thanks for triggering the memories!

      • Incredible memories, worthy to revisit many times ~ sooo…when are you heading back 😉

  6. My vacation has been delayed, by a year. Thanks for whisking me away into a lovely flight of fancy.

    • It is good to hear my post was able to give you a little time away from reality ~ isn’t this year something else? I’ve spent most of the year in the Czech Republic, but was able to come back to Seattle in August and it is such a strange scene to walk the streets here. One thing, your vacation next year will be something to doubly enjoy 🙂

  7. A beautiful and meaningful post Randall, and most needed during these transformational times. We all need this space to deeply understand who we are, and to see the small stories we have lived up until now. Finding our authentic self, takes patience and surrender. And now is a unique opportunity to ‘rise’ from the old and to awaken our deepest potentials. From this space, we will join back into the dance of life again, and indeed be stronger for it.

    • Thank you, Karen. This is truly a transformational time, affecting every country and every person – and while frustrating it does give us a different reflection about our life and reality. You say it very eloquently, it is a unique opportunity to rise ~ wishing you a great finish to the summer. Take care.

    • Thank you very much, Sidran. Wishing you and your family well back in your beautiful part of the world. Take care ~

  8. So true, Randall – what a strange year this has been! It is interesting to see how different people have approached it, but I think many of us have longingly flicked through photographs of previous trips, and indulged in memories of better times, when we couldn’t physically travel. Your photographs were a welcome reprieve from the daily view from my window. Enjoy the last bit of your summer.

    • One of those years that does make us all recalibrate how we live, never could have imagined this global paralysis we are experiencing. Like you say, though, it is interesting how people adjust to this uniqueness of life this year brings out, how we seek out some sort of creativity to find comfort. Wishing you a great finish to your summer, Jolandi, and onto something great to finish out the year.

      • Thanks, Randall. I think if someone described this year to me, say two years ago, I would have called them paranoid and suggested they write a science fiction novel. I hope we will be able to hold on to the lessons we are learning this year . . .

  9. It’s wonderful to see your work and read your writing again! Hope all is well with you and your family!☺️

    • Thank you very much, Dana. So great to hear from you and I hope all is well with you and your incredible family. I head back to Czech next week and hopefully we will all be back to a normal life soon. Take care.

    • Hola amigo, thank you very much and happy you enjoyed the escape ~ take care, and best to you and your family.

  10. Wow your work is just amazing man. Can you help me to write like you? (only 50% maybe?), I am trying to write my first blog 🙂

  11. Dalo, you are such a poet. You are effortlessly weaving together observations about this strange, and big, and transformational, and weird, and powerful year, with fantastic memories of such a majestic, and magical place as Machu Piccu. It´s almost as if you shift your reader´s consciousness with each post you create, and transport us a place of wonder, hope, stillness, trust, and visual and written poetry. Your writing and photography feels really special to me, as I said before. So happy you created another post! Like you, I find that this year does offer a lot of potential – maybe that viewpoint is easier for adventurous types to embrace! “Life is either a daring adventure, or nothing at all” comes to mind… I am with you in feeling “These days, time has slowed to a point where a calm independence allows my mind to chase down desires and enjoy the peace of yesterday.” How blessed are we that get to re-visit our favorite adventures in our minds and hearts? Thank you again, Dalo! Sending love and hugs 🙂

    • A poet, while I like the sound of this ~ I think my poetry skills lag far behind 🙂 One thing I do like about travel, is it does bring a certain adventure into our lives which can be reflected in the stories and ideas we get from travel, and in that sense the feelings we generate become quite poetic. I like the motto you have written “Life is either a daring adventure, or nothing at all” and having a mind that thinks this way does make it easier to get out of bed in the morning and it can create something interesting especially in a year like the one we are experiencing now. I suppose it is finding the potential of the day no matter the situation 🙂 Wishing you a great finish to the summer, Maria Elena, and thank you very much for this great comment. Take care and cheers to the day ahead ~

      • Ah well, we are always still learning – I do insist, there is something super poetic about your writing 🙂 I like the way you are applying the adventure motto to daily life – yes, we so are the co-creators of our daily life and especially of how we experience it, right? Exactly, I totally concur with your words here: “It is finding the potential of the day no matter the situation” 🙂 What a beautiful and life-affirming message. Thanks for your lovely wishes, wishing you a fabulous start to the new season already, with plenty of that crisp and gorgeous autumn air:) Take care and talk soon:)

      • Experiencing life can be such a subtle thing and there is adventure almost everywhere we look, from the garden out front or halfway around the world, so much to learn 🙂 It is a good life. Wishing you a good weekend, Maria.

      • Heres to ongoing adventures, big and small, and learning something new every day and in every way:) Have a great week my dear! Hugs

    • Thank you very much, Jane. For such a strange year we are all experiencing, sometimes I am surprised by how quickly it is moving along…and would like for it to slow down a bit. Writing this post did do that to some extent. Wishing you well, stay safe and healthy, and look forward to the autumn ahead.

  12. Ahhh, Randall! I most distinctly needed this… with all its hope and uncertainty. And what a magical, mysterious place to escape into. So happy to hear from you again. It’s been awhile.

    • Thank you very much, Gunta. There is always something a bit electric and wondrous contained in the feelings of hope, even with the uncertainty surrounding us. It felt good to be writing again ~ wishing you well.

  13. Thank you for sharing Machu Picchu through your amazing photography, Randall. The same like you, I wonder about the future.

    • Thank you very much, Inese. I’m very optimistic about the future ~ although there is a lot more wonder and uncertainty about it that I ever could have imagined 🙂

  14. Wow, what truly magnificent photos of such a magical place! I was there about 20 years ago with my dad and this summer I had a trip planned with my 13-year old daughter. Sadly like so much it was canceled. Hope to make it there again someday soon with her. I hope you are doing well! This has certainly been a very very difficult time. I long to travel and see family again! 🙂

    • I also enjoy when I read or see photos of a place I have visited in the past ~ both for reliving the memory of my travel and then to see/gain a different perspective of the place in the current timeframe. It is too bad you could not make it there with your daughter this year, but it will just make the trip more special with her when you do go. Being able to have those bookends of memories of travel to MP first with your father and then eventually with your daughter will be quite something. Cheers and very happy to hear from you.

  15. You are back in the blogosphere, that’s good news, Randall. It’s wonderful to read your poetic thoughts about the past, the present and the future and marvel at your images again! Great title for an article in these strange and uncertain times we are going through. Love your precious memories of an amazing place so beautifully captured. I visited MP some 12 years ago, also in the off-season and were fortunate not have too many people around. I looked at my photos as I were sorting out my files the other day – makes me appreciate your excellent images even more! 🙂
    Have a good Sunday. x

    • Hi Dina, and it feels good to be back in the blogosphere once again ~ looking through photos and picking up the ‘pen & paper’ again felt good, as if I was escaping once again to some new place in time. And in a year like this one, such escapes are definitely necessary although at times seem more difficult to do. On this trip to MP, I was a bit worried the rainy, off-season in Peru would be less of an experience, but the lack of tourists and meeting up with the locals who travel during the off season had taught me the off-season is often the best time to travel. Did you spend much time in Peru? I love the place…especially the food 🙂 Wishing you all well, and take care.

      • Hi Randall, I stayed for a good week. Lucky for me, I had a guide to accompany me and my friend, it was a birthday gift from dear friends, which was much appreciated. We had torrential rain in Cusco, but only for half day and we had good weather on MP and the rest of the stay. After a few days in Cusco we went by bus to Puno and spent three days at Titicaca. It was a wonderful week in slow 🚶‍♀️motion, getting tuned to the altitude. 🙂

  16. This is a fantastic landscape!
    So unusual and full of exciting history. Maybe one day i will have the opportunity to look at these buildings and take a walk between them.
    Thank you so much for this wonderful post and fabulous photos.
    Greetings from the beautiful Rhine-Highlands / Germany
    🌺🦋❤🌺
    🙂 Rosie 🙂

    • The history and sights of MP are something I’ll never forget ~ an incredible land. Thank you, Rosie, and wish you a great and healthy week ahead.

  17. Randall fabulous post, great to read and see your beautiful images transporting us to MP. As others have said above it is fabulous to see you back blogging i missed you too x

    • Wonderful to hear from you, Charlotte, and thank you very much for the nice words. It is good to be back writing and connect with you once again ~ wish you continued success in this rather strange year. Take care and wish you a great week ahead.

  18. I am thrilled by your photos. They are so beautiful. I have been to Machu Picchu twice and have come away with wonderful memories, but not such wonderful photos!
    Your post reminds me of this (I don’t know where it came from) “Things are not getting worse, they are being revealed. We must hold each other tight and continue to pull back the veil”.
    The world seems poised on a precipice now. Each day it seems, more is revealed.
    Thank you for your thoughtful words.
    Alison

    • The memories of Machu Picchu are something else, the place and the people made a great impact on me. You’ve been twice, which is pretty amazing because it gives you two different perspectives of the place ~ I do hope to visit Peru again in the near future as I very much like the spirit of the place 🙂 And yes, I think this process of things being revealed in this world right now is a good thing, but I think it will be a very rocky road. Around the world there seems to be some very out-of-touch politics happening with so much tension. Makes escaping back into memories not a bad thing 🙂 Wishing you well, Alison and thank you for the words ~ take care.

  19. Such a poignant piece Randall, tinged with the historic struggles of bygone ages, as well as filled with so much optimism,… for out of all ruins, there are always great possibilities for learning and growth.

    Every downward trail I have walked there has been a lesson in its depth of despair, and were it not for those lessons, then I would not have progressed to pull myself into higher awareness and consciousness.. Because I learnt to look deeper within my soul and learned to love all aspects of myself. The Positive and the Negative.. Because we are both, learning to balance and choose either love or fear.

    I wonder if in 500 years’ time our future selves will look back upon this period of lockdown and fear as a turning point in Human civilisation.

    I wonder will we have shaken off the shackles of Fear or will we have become mindless robots no longer Human And also be viewing empty dwellings and cities?

    The Fog you speak of, like a curtain.. Beautifully said. That Fog now is beginning to lift within the minds of those waking, Who now see their view from a higher perspective of what lay hidden beneath our world all of this time Randall.

    The path of the awakened ones has long been a lonely one, but as you envisage as the fog lifts, we are seeing others taking their first steps in coming together and finding hope in each other and within Truth.

    Many thanks dear Randall, Loved this post, I read your words several times…
    They resonated deeply within my soul…

    And while I have never been to this wonderful place.. My daughter has, as nothing can quite compare to its majestic beauty or magic.

    You captured both perfectly Randall with your excellent photography and narration my friend..
    A delightful, insightful and uplifting post that contains both Hope and Strength..

    Love and Blessings..
    Sue 💚🙏

    • Thank you very much, Sue, for the thoughtful comment. This strange time we are going through is able to give us a new perspective globally and also I think it gives each of us time to step back and see how we must change in this new world we live in. Historically, I think this has always been the case with great cities/countries who have achieved great things and then had to battle with the inevitable problems. I’m hopeful about the future, and I think the younger generation is up to make the world a better place 🙂 Your daughter is lucky to have seen MP, and you are too for having your daughter share with you her travels. Wishing you well, and enjoy the rest of your summer.

      • I think so too Randall, Humanity is always given a chance for its own evolutionary leap, .. To which time line it wishes to leap? we are always given the choice… I hope Humanity chooses well..
        And I believe the younger generation are primed ready for what is occurring, They are strong, resilient and from my own family of witnessing that younger generation of young men and women teens and younger, I see how their independent streaks will serve them well..
        I am the lucky one in having my daughter 🙂 and pride swells my heart with both of my children…
        Thank you Randall and sending well wishes as you hopefully will soon be able to travel more freely around the world you love exploring so much..
        🙏

  20. A refreshing read, Randall — thank you. There is courage in hope. To hope is to make oneself vulnerable. I hope that this piece inspires others to grasp a ray of hope for the future, like a sunbeam breaking through Seattle’s clouds. Stay happy and healthy my friend.

    • Very true, Shawn. Wherever there is hope, there is good to be found ~ thank you for stopping by. Wish you a Tricia a great finish to the summer and hope you two are able to travel a bit and stay healthy. Take care.

  21. “To aspire to greatness is a tenant of the human spirit, aspirations fueling new ideas, triggering the evolution of a better world.“ Ah, Randall, so much poetry and truth in your photos and writing. Thank you.

    • Evolution of a better world ~ keeping positive will help make it happen. Thank you, John, and wish you well.

  22. Great post and photos with valid points to ponder, Randall. Reflecting on past trips and experiences is a good thing to do during this time of lockdowns and travel bans, as it can teach us lessons and inspire us for the future. And it is interesting to think about what caused the decline of great empires like the Inca to the point where it was easily conquered by a few Spanish conquistadores. It is also sobering to see these great but empty ruins and realize they used to be a thriving civilization in the past. I definitely agree that bold leaders are needed to help turn around things because things certainly aren’t working with a lot of the leaders in place now. I am not that optimistic but I hope I am wrong.

    • It is something else to see not only a world dealing with the Covid-19 pandemic, but also all the places around the world dealing with political disorder… it is hard not to see and reflect on history and how we bring such chaos upon ourselves. Bold leaders in Hong Kong, Belarus, the USA, et. al., are badly needed and while the short term things look a little bleak ~ I am optimistic that in the end we will find such leaders. Wishing you a great start to the week, and enjoy what remains of the summer. Take care.

      • Yes, it is definitely a big reminder that many things in this world are not right. Things will be bleak in the short term and I think we need to be prepared that it might even become worse before it gets better. Thanks for the good wishes and hope you have a good week as well.

  23. “Memories are my hope.” I read this a few days ago and your words and images helped to carry me through a difficult weekend of dealing with the public. So much anger right now. When the present/future is so murky, memory can give us a reason to persevere. There’s gratitude for past adventures and inspiration for the future. Machu Picchu is a brilliant symbol for what is happening today. We could very possibly be witnessing the disintegration of our civilization. The factors that brought down the magnificent Inca empire could possibly be the very same ones that are at play now. Not necessarily “obvious” political factors, but fundamental cultural/spiritual beliefs. So much of what is happening is symbolic and fascinating. That photo of the ruins through a tiny circle of fog is absolutely brilliant. I get it. 🙂

    “the fall of innocence is a destiny we all experience in life, a piece of the self-discovery puzzle.” So many pieces of our true selves are found amid the rubble.

    I had planned to go to Machu Picchu during the Peru trip I was to take in April. Now, if I’m even able to go to Peru, I will most likely just go to the Amazon. That alone would be an incredible gift. I’ve let it go, but maybe something miraculous will happen. Memories are my magic. I hope you have enjoyed the summer and your trip home to Seattle, as much as possible. It was such a treat to see a post from you again. I agree that the current, very heavy atmosphere is not conducive to creativity, so I admire your ability to turn shadow into gold. Take care of yourself, Dalo, and cheers to future adventures.

    • I thought about you and your planned trip to Machu Picchu as I was writing this ~ and hopefully you will be able to see it one day. The Amazon is a similar experience with Machu Picchu in terms of being awe-inspiring, but so completely different in mood, climate and the people. You’d like experiencing such extremes, it seems very much to be in your nature 🙂 These days, you are right with so much uncertainty now – in fact, it is a little scary with all that is going on it begins to feel like a new normal. Every now and then, I have no choice but to pull out a memory and put myself back in the dream of the past, which fires me up to get back into life with optimism. Yes, I agree with you in our current lifestyles are ripe for disintegration unless we become more proactive is pursuing not just solutions but engaging others to join. This trip back to Seattle has been a blessing, experiencing the wonders with my family but also the depressions within Seattle and the States ~ yet, I still return back to Czech with a healthy optimism which I still haven’t lost. Wishing you a great day in your Michigan-created oasis, and many more days of creativity up to your eventual trip to Peru 🙂 Take care ~

  24. That boldness is needed is so true. I find myself wondering what this world could look like, if the commuters stay at home and the coffee shops close and the airline industry doesn’t recover. I would love to see the boldness of a new, slower, more local way of being. I can’t see my way through to what a good world would look like, but perhaps those visions of the past will help us. Beautiful photos and lyrical words as always Randall.

    • Thank you very much, Andrea. It is an interesting question you wonder of how things may be. I think there will definitely be a bold new world after we all work our way through this ~ and I’m optimistic is will be a better one, and I like your idea of it being a slower paced life. We’ve had a catalyst to learned a lot more about ourselves and the world and what is important in life, so it’ll be interesting to see which path it leads us down. Wish you well and take care ~

  25. Welcome back! Your kind of escapism goes way beyond what most people do with a daydream – you weave new cloth from the memories and imagine new possibilities. It’s a creative task. It seems that creativity is being sparked all over the world these days, in spite of, or because of, the challenges we’re facing. Before I read that you’re back in Seattle, I wondered if you were. I thought about how difficult a place it has become. The violence and destruction is hard to watch, the SPD lost Chief Best, City Council is a mess, etc. etc. I miss the cultural stimulation of a city but feel protected up here from the harshest aspects of the new order of disorder. Things break apart and are put back together, better, we hope. I’m sure HK has been in your thoughts, too, and so many other places. It’s hard to imagine strife at Machu Picchu. The photos are wonderful, wonderful. The fog! What luck to witness those wisps and fragments rolling around. Thank you – and take care.

    • Thank you very much, Lynn. Daydreaming is an art I have excelled in for most of my life 🙂 In times like these, creativity is such a needed commodity, but with all the chaos around sometimes it is difficult to move past the idea stage and I think for those of us who like photography we are lucky because it is a great escape from the currently reality. I flew back to Czech last Wednesday, right when the wildfires really started spreading throughout the west ~ I hope all is well with you and take care.

  26. Absolutely sublime. Astonishing meld, achingly beautiful images and what a glorious, lissome meditation…words well worth revisiting time and again. Happy early autumn to you, my friend. -toad smiling

    • To make a toad smile is a very good feeling, indeed! Happy you enjoyed the post and I hope things are going well as we begin to enter the autumn season ~ take care my friend.

  27. Pingback: Escape from Tomorrow ~ Machu Picchu — Global Sojourns Photography – Entertainment and business

  28. Dalo, these are wonderful pictures from Machu Picchu. I have seen pictures of the place before but these are different. They are also from a special time of the day. I like its warmness. They bring the state of mind to the same as what dialog is guiding you along! The historic place likes this, always makes me imagine how the place looked like when it was still alive. Your imagination can run every where with many questions left unanswered.

    Awesome!

    • Very happy you noticed the lighting in the photos, the one thing I kept to schedule on this trip was making sure I could photograph around the dawn or dusk hours 🙂 Like you, I always wonder how the place would be and feel like back in its heyday ~ and how great it would be to experience such a moment even briefly. Wish you well, YC, and thank you ~ take care.

  29. Poignant and wonderful reflections and photos Randall. Escaping from tomorrow with memories and new insights is comforting. Finding peace in the present, can more difficult these days, especially with noise of crowds at you window. Be safe and well 💕

    • Thank you, Val, when able to reflect back on something in life and take what we’ve learned/experience to make for a better future, it is a comforting feeling. Wishing you well and hope you have a great start to autumn.

    • Thank you, Lignum, this has definitely been a year full of unique experiences and one I hope we all never have to live through again. It has given us some time to be more reflective, though, which can be a good thing.

  30. Hello.

    Gorgeous pics of Mach Picchu. Thank you. My dream is to visit there someday.

    Have a great day!

    • Hopefully you will have the time to visit, one of those wonders of the world. Wish you a great day as well, and take care.

  31. Very nice to see you posting again. While you post far and few these days, each post is well-thought out poetic and never fails to have that touch of photography flair 🙂 I agree with what Tina said – lovely how you pondered the mystery around Mach Picchu and the vulnerability of this world. I also had to chuckle when you said in the comment you were so slow to capture the rolling mist. Still amazing work.

    It is interesting you asked when did the great society in that nook of the world stopped evolving. Maybe it didn’t. Maybe right now as it is, it is part of the evolution process – and just a very different facade of what it once was. Right now the world is going through a strange phase. Most of the world never was prepared for what’s going on – even when history has shown us that things like these do happen. And so the phase comes and goes.

    I was wondering if the last shot you had the mist photoshopped in it. But reading what you said to Tina, I am inclined to think it was a very lucky shot 🙂 I also like how you ended the post by saying you put the dishes away. That really speaks volumes about the state of the world now. Doing the dishes – especially when you live alone – doesn’t seem very much. But it can pile up. It’s such a small, mundane thing to do out of other things in our daily lives. But a small act that goes towards bettering our lives – and such a great feeling when you do the dishes. At the moment most of us are doing our part (be it staying home or wearing a mask outside) just to get on with our mundane days – and hope for a better tomorrow.

    Hope you are doing well Randy. Stay safe and enjoy the solitude 🙂

    • Thank you, Mabel, it was a bit surprising to realize how long it had been since I last posted and it felt good to relive the Machu Picchu experience and to write creatively again. Ha, ha, yes I really couldn’t believe how quickly the fog was dissipating and lucky to catch the little that remained 🙂 I attributed it to being overwhelmed by the scenery there, just to stand there and take it all in.

      I like your take on the evolution of society and the world in general ~ even the chaos of today, are sets of events which are part of a phase we have to adjust ~ the only thing I could say, is true leaders can make this period valuable so we evolve efficiently versus wasting what could have been a golden opportunity to learn/evolve.

      The last shot was taken on Huayna Picchu peak, looking down on Machu Picchu and it was clear when we started the hike up, but then got very cloudy. When at the summit, there was not shot, but I was able to get off the last shot on the way down through some trees (and having to climb up the bank for the opening). If it could have opened up a bit more I would have liked it very much, but as always I will take what I can get 🙂 Also, love the comment about the dishes ~ insightful and I agree. When it comes to dishes, I do them almost immediately because like you say it can be relaxing. I hope all is going well with you, and with spring ahead hopefully many new and good things come your way. Wish you well and take care ~

      • That was lovely to get some fog up there, and there’s always something peaceful about a foggy view. That is good on you take what you got, even if it’s a photo that you didn’t expect – and it turned out to be a very good photo 🙂 Climate is always unpredictable, just like how things in the world these days can be so unpredicable.

        It really is a wonder how long all of us were last year compared to what we’re all experiencing right now. Leaders can make a difference and some can’t in times like these. Either way we all have to move forward, evolved and adapt to what’s going on now and what’s to come.

        Hope you get to travel at some point, Randy. Wishing you a wonderful few months to see the year out 🙂

  32. A wonderful read, Randall. Your marvelous images flowed along with your apt ruminations. Each image is made with careful attention to composition and details. The frame within a frame, the fog curling, the lush landscapes of the ruins. “Failure of leadership is a failure in courage”. Rotting right before our eyes. Is history repeating itself? Great to see you posting and I appreciate your visits to mine. Take care and be safe. 🙂

    • Thank you, Jane. It felt good to write again, and I’ve been drawn to these photos for a year but just never put pen to paper, so to speak. This year has been so surreal, and then as you know very well… the wildfires of the west coast took off, replacing all the other chaos as our number one concern. However, with so many good people out there I still remain a huge optimist. Wishing you and your family are well, and take care.

  33. What a ‘mind journey’. Feels as if I did the walk myself. In Time and Space. The beauty, the ruins of [what was once an] invincibility.. Much enjoyed it. Every step of the way—even the wrong number break! 🙂 And beyond. Quite some insightful allegory. 🍸

    • Every now and then, it is good to take a little stroll into memories and relive those times in our current state of mind 🙂 Thank you very much, and I hope things are going well for you in this slightly chaotic period we are experiencing. During such times, even what use to be inconveniences, such as wrong numbers, can end up bringing a smile to the day 🙂 Cheers to the coming autumn, and take care ~

  34. Beautiful powerful, thought provoking writing and spectacular images. We are on the brink of a new earth with much to learn.

    • Thank you, Miriam. Yes, I think this year has been a time for us to learn a lot about ourselves and globally, for those all around us. Wish you a nice weekend.

      • Yes indeed, it’s been a huge year. Wishing you a lovely weekend too.

    • In times like this, a little escape is always important to seek out 🙂 Thank you, Helen, I hope all is going well with you.

  35. So wonderful to dream with you, Randall. I’ve missed you! Thanks for blessing us all with your exquisite words and photos. ❤

    • Thank you for accompanying me in this dream, Ann ~ I can always use a little (or a lot) of Boston wisdom. It is great to hear you are doing well, and I wish you a great start to your week.

  36. Randall! How good it is to see a post from you. What magnificent photography, all if one stops to absorb the “message” tells a story. I agree with you that at this time of history, creativity has been challenged, yet, despite what is going on, I refuse to allow anyone or anything to take what I so love to do. Like you I love to travel, not extensively as you do, and even though I have not thus far this year, I have managed to go to places to continue my love affair with Mother.

    So many times I have asked myself, has not anyone paid attention in history? Do not people understand that great civilizations have come and gone due to greed, corruption, and technology? Do they not understand that history tends to repeat itself?

    And then leaders, another subject you touched upon. It is those very ones who have led us down this Road of Destruction. I believe with all my heart it is up to people who are AWAKE to make changes to bring a Better Reality into focus. How? That question is a loaded one and touches on so many levels what I “envision” needs to take place in order for this world to become harmonious with Mother. Or will we like Atlantis, disappear? So many questions plague my mind, yes a mind that still THINKS!

    Every morn I awake in an anxious state and I lay there deliberately going through my memories until I hit upon one that brings peace and smiles. And then I stay there all day long determined not to allow the madness of this world creep into my heart and home.

    I encourage you to keep writing and “escape” into your own world to keep at bay the dark that is intent to swallow all in its path. My camera and my writing have kept me sane throughout these past few months. I admit there were times I did not want to even pick up my camera or blog, yet still I forced myself to do so. And in so doing, the heaviness faded. Please keep your posts coming not only for our pleasure but for your own sake.

    I could go on and on …. but I will not. Your post brought to my mind how past greatness is no longer and how, that destiny may very well be what is occurring now. My HOPE is those who are waking up release the bondage of the darkness from off their spirit and fight back in whatever way they can. My HOPE that those of good Heart are placed in leadership positions and work together with the people to change our fates from dark to light. All of us have, if we but allow, so many Lessons to learn. This time is an opportune time to dig deep and to face our own inner darkness in order to conquer and be set free. And so it is.

    • Great comment, Amy, and amid all this strife I think you have the best solution which is to start the day in a state of mind to see the color/beauty and peace in the world. This can then set in motion a positive influence with work/play and overall creativity. We create the reality we wish to see ~ although good leadership can make this process so much easier 🙂 I am an optimist, and the US has always been a beacon of light to the world, and will continue to be. Thank you again, and wish you a wonderful week ahead ~ be safe and take care.

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