Except as noted, all images copyrighted by and should be attributed to E. Bourland Hawley.
I had become many eons ago a traveling literary gnome, inquisitive about places I had and had not visited,
walking the same paths of peoples from the past, through places once grand and still grand,
photographing images that now show me the places about which I still dream . . .

Saturday, June 30, 2007

Gnome Journeys to Vermejo


"Late June and July produce regular hatches of caddis, damsel and mayflies, sending trout into feeding frenzies." I read this while I paused in Amarillo on my way to Vermejo.

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Gnome's Red Oak


Strong winds toppled one of the trees here. It was the tree where the Barred Owl would perch upon and watch us in our courtyard in the evenings.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Samos



Samos seems the only disappointment of our trip. Not that I wish to emphasize that, so I’ll mention the highlights. Sitting outside at dinner last night with Margaret was most assuredly a highlight of my experience on Samos. She treated me to dinner and a nice wine after a relatively interesting day.
On Doryssa Bay we stayed at a hotel noted for its unfriendly service – when we had service – weighed down by buffet-style food. The low quality of the food, the testy service of the waiter, and the lack of room service all conspire to try the tolerance of those of us who enjoy spending a quiet evening winding down after a day of visiting the sites and a museum of the area.
But back to the highlights of my visit to Samos: This morning we arrived at the Sanctuary of Hera to find it locked. They did, though, tape a note to the gate that said they had gone on strike and would return at half past noon. We glimpsed the excavation site through the fence, though I missed the one last column left standing, then drove downtown to the museum where they exhibit the extraordinary objects they have found in the area. The museum was also closed because of the strike until half past noon. We mostly dawdled over cappuccinos and Coke Light under the awning of a café that overlooked the bay, then had lunch, and then walked back to the museum. Inside, I noted that the collection is marvelous and intriguing for its differing cultural influences. Good things are worth waiting for, as they say.
But I felt antsy about meandering through an excavation site, spotting glimpses on a stone or a hunk of marble of an era or two of people who lived long ago. So when the driver deposited us at two in the afternoon at the hotel, Jean and I set off for an adventure. We crossed the street to explore what is left of the Sanctuary of Artemis and an “ancient” Christian cemetery. We climbed up the mountain to touch what is left of a Cyclopean wall that once surrounded city. We felt pleasantly surprised when we came upon one of the entrances to the E. tunnel surrounded by a tall fence with a locked gate. We spotted a small brown owl sitting on the fence. It seemed to watch us as it kept an eye for a field mouse, which it caught, deftly, then took to its private dining area. We thought we were alone when we spotted a car and a couple coming toward the gate.
They were a nice couple from Chablis, France. We asked them about the distance down the road to the excavation site of a Geometric cemetery that we could see from our location. They said it’s too far for going “a pied” and offered us a ride there. Delightedly, we accepted.
The Geometric cemetery is protected by the same kind of tall fence and the same kind of locked gates. Some excavation appears to go on, though it seems hard to tell with confidence because, though we see a roof over an area of the site, work may have halted.
Karl appeared on the sidewalk on his way to the town of Pythagoran. We joined him, and then left him to his shopping while we walked to the charming harbor. There, we saw moored large yachts on our left, and local fishing boats on our right side. The place is just utterly charming.
If we had not had a constraint on our time we would have chatted with a marble worker we passed by, or a fisherman cutting bait for his evening fishing – language barrier notwithstanding – but we had to return to the hotel, a good fifteen-minute walk, while including a stop to the gelato shop. It was, after all, a pleasant day.

Saturday, June 9, 2007

Gnome on Santorini


The akrotiri is closed for now because the new roof fell and killed two persons.

I spent most of the day walking around in the old town of Fira -- all those steps that go up and down on the 1300 foot cliff -- looking for photographic subjects. The town is lovely and intriguing.

Let Lovely Turn of Phrase Begin

Give Me a Kiss to Build a Dream On

Listen, will you? I think that . . . literature, poetry, music and love make the world go round . . . while mathematics explains things; I fill my life with them, then go walking in snowy woods.
Let us go then, you and I
like two etherized patients floating
through life, together feeling prufrockian.
DDB Jr. makes my world go 'round; during his absence, Pachelbel fills it up.
One summer I sailed across the Atlantic Ocean, then through the Gulf of Finland to reach Saint Petersburg; I pursued Joseph Brodsky in its alley ways. I dream of making that two summers.
I read “Biking to Electra;” found my way in a Jaguar car, and glanced at the flashing steel grasshoppers at sunset. I’ll follow K.O.P.’s footsteps after he followed N.Scott Momaday’s; find warmth and inspiration on a rainy mountain.
Throw chinese coins for the I Ching.
Save the whales, the spotted owl, the woman in toil.
Cast a fly for trout; my memories of fly fishing under the sunny blue Colorado sky remain; I yearn to build more . . . with more trophy Browns.
Listen for the swan’s calls on the Baltic Sea. Feel KKII's joy, his arms spread wide in Yazilikaya.
Good night, Jimmy Durante, where ever you are.