Monochrome Madness and let winter reinvigorate the spirit

My submission to Monochrome Madness (3-39) by Leanne Cole- always a great gallery of artists.- and a little Tourism BC.

shetland-border

Hey my dears!!  I have been away on a small jaunt into the mountains.  My tablet does not work that well so technology was put aside for a time and I will be catching up over the next week,  (what else is new!) Meanwhile I am sitting and pondering the  winter garden I was privileged to visit, the beautiful mountains and valleys of the Okanagan country of BC.

manning-park2
Manning Park

I never thought I would go into the new year with such sadness, a creative time out, some disappointment, regret and concern,  but also reflection. Not so very long ago I was bursting with enthusiasm. These emotional ups and downs can be quite draining.  With that in mind, taking a little road trip seemed a good thing to do, and to visit my brother in the mountains. Mountains have such significance.  I mean, in Judaeo/ Christian belief, Moses went there to receive the Ten Commandments, and Jesus was tempted by Satan on a mountaintop and returned victorious.

two-mountains

In his musical suite Peer Gynt, the Norwegian Edvard Grieg, paid homage to the Mountain King. In Norse legend, dark elves dwell there- and trolls. Quests and discoveries have been fulfilled on mountains. People die just below the summit while chasing their dreams, like Mallory and Irvine on Everest.

In a spiritual sense, mountains have always represented something great and mysterious, something visionary, dangerous and profound. Mountains were born out of fire and cataclysm, forged by the ever turbulent forces inside our planet that pushed upward into the clouds and heavens. “Why do we so desperately and gloriously want to reach that summit in the sky when there is always the risk of failing, or worse; the long tedious descent.

Grieg- In the Hall of the Mountain King

enchanted-forest-snow2
Magical Winter Forest

Finally after some procrastination, and like Mohammed, I went to the mountain because, it was not going to come to me. Metaphorically speaking,  I have felt as though I have been climbing it this last while, but not as Hillary, rather more like Sysyphus. I had to take my own advice from my last post.  I had to force myself to let go of my burdens, get organized and literally go. It was the right decision.

keremeos-road
Mountain Road, take me home

These  nearby mountains are not too tall and are covered in the magic of a still sparkling winter freeze. Within five driving hours we stepped from the rain of the west coast into another world of minus 15 Celsius. I immediately woke up.  During periods of opening clouds, icicles  hanging from the roof were struck by tubes of sunlight and rang out in crisp tenor clefs while  north wind tubas blew a counter melody.  I must have been inhaling the hum of light refracting particles dancing across the pristine snow because I was soon singing Leonard’s Cohen’s Allelujah and Here Comes The Sun, as my brother played his guitar and then made pancakes for breakfast.

ponies

He is a very inspiring fella,  coaching soccer, curling, playing in a band and teaching school, as well as taking any visitors ice skating, skiing and snow tubing. It is always a well earned rest at the end of the day.  I am invigorated again.

So why do people climb mountains? “Because they are there.” (George Mallory)

Afterward:   Murphy’s law is never wrong, and if all is running smoothly you must have overlooked something. We did return home to a leaking roof and a flooded laundry room.

73 Comments Add yours

  1. Anica Art says:

    Stunning photos, Cybele! 🤗

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m so sorry that you’ve experienced such a low, Cybele, but I love it that you made your decision to go to the mountains and just upped and went. It sounds from your insightful words, and looks from those beautiful photos, just the right decision. Personally, I’m not good at all living in a flat place and much prefer being higher up on a hill with a view. There’s something about flat places that leaves me feeling drained if I spend too long on them, so I can well believe that going to the mountains can physically and mentally uplift you. And I adore The Hall of the Mountain King. As a child, I used to drive my family up the wall playing it on the piano!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. thanks so much Sarah, I’m permanently behind now it seems. I’m not beating myself up for it either! lol. So glad you like the mountains. But in England you have those rolling hills too! Clever girl to be able to play that wonderful piece!!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Ali Isaac says:

    Ah… such a beautiful and inspiring post. Your brother sounds kinda wonderful! 😁 Hope you’re feeling better now. Don’t put pressure on yourself to catch up… sometimes I think its better just to move on instead of looking back. Xxx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. thanks for visiting Ali!! I hear you about pressure. Many thanks my friend!

      Like

  4. RMW says:

    Enjoyed going on your jaunt with you. In my experience nature is always a wonderful healer.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. it is indeed!! Thanks so much!!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. smilecalm says:

    wonderful tale
    of beauty & survival!
    so happy everyone did
    and warmed up, eventually 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. thank you so much Smilecalm. Indeed we did!

      Like

  6. milliethom says:

    Gorgeous photos of a ‘Winter Wonderland’, Cybele. Mountainous areas are such special places and, as you say, they are very therapeutic – especially covered in snow! I can certainly relate to the emotional ups and downs in life – and last year – and I hope you’re now on an even keel again. This wonderful trip seems to have worked wonders for you – and what a lovely, talented brother you have.
    I love the way you’ve woven myth, magic and religious beliefs into your post and have given us much to think about. And Grieg’s music complemented your photos and words perfectly. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much for reading Millie. What is winter without a bit of snow! I find it very magical. There is also much native folklore in this area. The legend of the Ogopogo of Okanagan Lake is very similar to “Nessie” with many sightings over the years. “From the top of the mountain you can see the beginning (creation).” Also the Okanagan area of BC is wine and orchard country. We actually had a little fruit wine tasting at a small village called Summerland. What do you think of strawberry rhubarb wine! Quite refreshing with a spritzer. I so appreciate your lovely comments always.

      Like

  7. Those views are amazing Cybele, wonderful light in the photos. I’ve never lived around mountains and rarely visited them, but I do find them fascinating – I used to read endless books about mountaineering. I can imagine that sort of landscape would be a great way to lift your burdens a little and feel lighter on your return (even if you did come back to earth with a bump!)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I do love a mountain landscape and meadow Andrea – though I love the sea too. We are fortunate to have so much wild nature in BC. As you do, I like to read about mountaineering or see documentaries about Everest but do not have the desire to climb anything but a medium sized hill which we have in the back here- (Mill Hill) with lovely views at the summit.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. A jaunt into the mountains, that sounds special. It must have been lovely to catch up with your brother. Wonderful images ..

    Liked by 1 person

  9. robert87004 says:

    It would take pages to comment fully so I shall simply say ‘ keep on shining’. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  10. paintdigi says:

    Happy 2017.
    Good posts, beautiful blog.
    Congratulations.
    Welcome to see my creations:
    paintdigi.com

    Liked by 1 person

      1. paintdigi says:

        You’r welcome , Friend

        Liked by 1 person

  11. Simply sublime! A wonderful feeling of space to breathe. Those ponies are just adorable too 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Aquileana says:

    Beautiful post… I like the analogies you propose, and mainly when you mention the symbolism and mythologies of mountains. I´ll have to check out Edvard Grieg´s piece.
    As the saying goes “there is no mountain high enough”. Our minds are strenght could be unbounded, don´t you think?.. wishing you good luck in your creative searchings, dear Cybele… Happy weekend! 😀

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks so much for such a thoughtful response my friend. The Grieg piece is very dramatic!! and yes, I agree with the unbounded!! We have to let go of that huge boulder and just let it roll down and forget about it!!

      Liked by 1 person

  13. Ah, little dune mouse, I kept your post to the side so I could properly read it today and I am so glad I did. I was not disappointed and the wait was worth it

    Liked by 2 people

    1. so pleased you enjoyed it Shey!! It was just what the mouse needed. I’m sure hamsters feel the same way at times!

      Like

  14. Carrie says:

    Thank you for taking us on a creative awakening with you. Yes, those times of darkness offer a moment where one wonders how any creative expression will find its way out of the body again and then, just when we stop asking it to, it does! Many beautiful images here full of wonder, hope, longing for something deeper and your unique touch of loveliness where others see nothing. I am inspired.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. thanks so much for your lovely comment Carrie. I hope the new year is being kind to you too! In the darkest hours I have hope always that things will improve!!

      Liked by 1 person

  15. Beautiful winter scenes! I love the snowflakes and twinkles :-). Very magical.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. thanks so much Pam!! I love snow – or at least looking at it if not always venturing out. It’s never too bad on the west coast!

      Liked by 1 person

  16. aidymcglynn says:

    Beautiful images Cybele – I particularly love the Mountain Road one. Nothing like the mountains to soothe the mind.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. of course you would Aidy!! Mountain man! Thank you so much for visiting my mountains.

      Liked by 1 person

  17. Adrian Lewis says:

    Sorry to hear you’ve been down, glad to hear that’s passed. Wonderful images here, especially the snowy landscapes and the magical (truly so!) forest. A 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  18. Anita says:

    Looks like you had a therapeutic vacation, Cybele! It’s good to have you (and your baeutiful, beautiful photos) back. 🙂
    Too bad about the laundry room, though it seems funny in hindsight… 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    1. it is!! the joys of owning your own home! Thanks so much Anita!

      Liked by 1 person

  19. Moz Loordes says:

    I love the sea just as you love the mountains, Cybele 🙂 I’m really fortunate to live by the sea and can look out of the lounge window and watch all the moods of the water, the shapes and swells of the waves, the sky above and how that interacts with the ocean, the moonlight that throws a path across the water on clear nights, how the stars and planets look on the horizon at dawn. All those beautiful things I enjoy. But I’m not a photographer lol so theses scenes stay in my mind and get described later on when I write.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. yes, I’m a writer too!! Or I love to write! Your description of your view is wonderful! I also live near the sea (I’m on an island) and I love sea tales. I sometimes tell a story or two (The Siren’s Bones etc) in world with Seanchai Library Group and sometimes show my images both RL and SL as well. Do you know Seanchai?

      Like

  20. Meant: set of images…

    Liked by 2 people

  21. Intriguing and marvelous et of images…well done.

    Liked by 3 people

  22. paula graham says:

    Magical stuff, to dream the blues away with.

    Liked by 2 people

  23. Nurul Lubis says:

    I found snowy season always looks magical. I do hope you find your spirit back on the top there, Cybele. And happy belated New Year to you..

    Liked by 2 people

    1. and to you Nurul!! thank you for your lovely thoughts always!

      Liked by 1 person

  24. hugs! gorgeous pictures as always. I share your sentiments that nature can change your mood for the good. Hope your roof has been fixed properly! xx

    Liked by 2 people

    1. hey Ceakay, thank you so much and see you later!!

      Like

  25. thegirlthatdreamsawake says:

    stunning images 😍

    Liked by 2 people

  26. disperser says:

    Nice post and nice photos.

    One thing; I thought Jesus was tempted in the desert or wilderness. I don’t recall anything about a mountain.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. thanks Disperser and for keeping me on my mountain toes!! In Matthew it says “the Devil took Jesus to a high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world” or some such.

      Liked by 1 person

    2. disperser says:

      Yup; I had forgotten that was one of the temptations. I remembered Luke 4:1,2 and not the latter verses.

      In my defense, I’m not a believer, but I remember thosee verses because forty days without Nutella or cheese or cookies would be pure torture for me.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. My dear, what can I say, I was raised RC and those darn Protestants always told us we didn’t read the bible – instead we were taught of the terrible ordeals of the saints and stuff of nightmares (never mind the fasting)- all wonderfully quotable.

        Like

  27. sheldonk2014 says:

    It’s good to see you cybele
    I’ve been having trouble with my art
    I finally did a piece today
    Everything has a season
    As always Sheldon

    Liked by 2 people

    1. it’s been a slow start but it will get better for us. Thanks my friend!!!

      Like

  28. I am just in awe looking at your photos. It’s like a whole other world. Breathtaking! Looking at these, I actually want to be there. Me! The one who wants nothing to do with the cold and snow! I can see you had a wonderful time. So sorry about your roof and laundry room. Sometimes reality just smacks you when you least expect it!🙄😻

    Liked by 2 people

    1. oh yeah!! 😀 Thank you so much Linda come and visit anytime! Just bring all your woolies!

      Like

      1. Careful, cause if I ever get the opportunity, I might just show up on your doorstep one day! LOL! 😆 ❤

        Liked by 2 people

  29. Maverick ~ says:

    Your creativity hasn’t suffered, sometimes being down is good and your images are gorgeous!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. much appreciated Maverick. Thank you my friend!

      Like

  30. All the images look magical! I’m so glad you feel invigorated again! May it last for months and months! xx

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you so much for your blessings and your lovely comment as always Deb!

      Liked by 1 person

  31. Suzanne says:

    I can identify with your new year feelings. It is an odd start to the year. New energy is there but it seems we have to shift mountains of old energy before we can benefit from it. A pilgrimage to the mountains seems utterly fitting. Where I live right now is so flat. A hill counts as a mountain down here. I’ve been basically house bound since Christmas because of the wound on my leg. It should be better by next week (according to the doc) so hopefully February will see me getting out and about.
    Your photos are stunning. No. 3,4 and 5 really stood out for me. Also the one of the aura around the sun. What a tremendous shot.
    I have never experienced the cold you speak of. I really don’t know how you Canadians stand it. You must be a very hardy people.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. a few people have been having a difficult time it seems. Thanks so much for commenting – and take care of that leg. I hope you are healing in every way!! Yes, I suppose we are used to colder climes lol!!

      Liked by 1 person

  32. sedge808 says:

    such amazing photos.
    thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 2 people

  33. Sherry Felix says:

    Hope the mountains lift you up – in more than one way 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I appreciate that Sherry!!

      Like

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