Short and Simple – LĪGO!


For the past 8 years for different reasons I am spending my summers away from home – in Bulgaria. It is a beautiful country with as beautiful people but there still is one particular date when I feel the sweet sting of longing for home inside me…somewhere in the region where heart is (or is supposed to be). It is the night from the 23rd to the 24th of June when Latvians celebrate Summer Solstice – the Līgo (Sway) Eve.

Recently I wrote a bit more about Līgo on Carpe Diem Haiku challenge “Carpe Diem Haiku *Summer Solstice*” therefore today I won’t bore you with details of cultural heritage and traditions. I just want to add one thing…yes, it is a special feeling of being together with family and friends somewhere outdoors near meadows, forests, fields and with the gleam of the last embers in bonfires meet the new sunrise. Some call it magical, some – mysterious but for me it is a part of my identity, my home. And I do miss it today. A touch or maybe more…


Ese’ s Weekly Shoot&Quote Challenge – Pleasure

My challenge is my passion – a photo you have taken and a quote, attributed to its author, and of course related to your image. Every week on Sunday I will post a new prompt. 

I want to thank my fellow bloggers who have already become a part of this challenge. Everyone’ s welcome to join! All you have to do is:

– create a post of your own with the title Ese’s Weekly Shoot & Quote Challenge – Pleasure;
– include a link to this post also for others to find you.

Let your ideas flow and enjoy!  Ese

Prompt 35 – PLEASURE

Simple pleasures are always the last refuge of the complex.
/Oscar Wilde/

There’re quite a few things, bringing pleasure into my life…


Appreciating beauty of every new day


New discoveries and paths to be taken


Presence of the ones close to my heart


Footprints…to make, to follow, to leave them…visible or not…

What about you and simple or not so simple pleasures?

The Līgo Haibun Challenge – Sense Of Home


This week there are two prompts for the Līgo Haibun Challenge:
Treasure      or      Despair.
After giving some thought to them I ended up at the place where everything usually starts from…

There have been roads, so many of them that all can’ t be found in my memory files anymore. The places pinned on the map quite a few times that the holes in the paper are supposed to tell stories of their own. About going away and returning. For a longer time and not so long but the feeling of coming back home has always been special. Like setting free from the rib cage a trembling sparrow…to finally let me breathe.

weary traveler
from all roads of the world
old one leads home

“Home wasn’t a set house, or a single town on a map. It was wherever the people who loved you were, whenever you were together.” /S.Dessen/ Yes, I must admit it has hardly had anything to do with mind but everything – with heart. That tiny corner of the world where pieces of my life’ s puzzle are all over the place. Framed memories of the past, vibrating present and dreamy future. A bit dusty on the shelves, nicely hanging in the wardrobe, almost hidden behind the cupboard doors and forgotten under the bed. Yet all there, all so very much present.

Looking at the walls, I remember laughter of my friends trying to make the wallpaper stick. Deep conversations until the break of dawn. Celebrating ourselves and life. Finding peace in the flickering flame of the last candle. Things are not just things there, they are knitted together with feelings. Echoes of giggles and tears, sounds and silence, leaving and always returning. A part of me – the microcosmos, though connected to the big world out there, still having an order of its own. My treasure.

within four walls
i build the world of my own
the door is open

The Līgo Haibun Challenge

The Līgo Haibun Challenge – One More Last Time


There are two prompts for the Līgo Haibun Challenge this week:
Fascinating   or   Torture.
Must admit I am amazed by how much there’ s under the surface of a human heart. Usually we choose not to talk about the most but sometimes emotions pour out. Just like that. Even if torturing…

They say family is supposed to be a fortress, well…they are right, in a way at least. But sometimes the walls around are not to protect but only to hide. And to keep up appearances for as long as possible.

Looking in his eyes I knew he would leave. Today, tomorrow, in a week or with the best of luck – after a month, but deep down inside I alway knew he would. There was a hinge of coldness, almost cruel one in his otherwise warm eyes, possessing the color of an oak-tree bark. And those words with a sudden sound of a broken glass that sneaked in our “father – daughter” conversations. That tiny “something” that kept me from pendulating and strenghtened belief he would take the first chance possible to step out. Or to step aside since he returned every time. Again and again. Sometimes to stay for so long I almost fell for his forged “never again” but reality proved me wrong.

I understood it needed time…everything did. For me to patch up my wounds, for him – to find another escape code, for everyone else – to keep pretending everything was fine. Time. That small word with the power of destruction, with an echo that nothing could silence. My most detested enemy.

Counting. Secretly counting. From…to…

continuous draught
in imaginary fortress
no place to hide

The Līgo Haibun Challenge

Tips Up And Tight Lines!

To tell you the truth, for me fishing is a Latvian thing. As Latvian as choral singing, four month winters and the biggest Summer Solstice celebration in the world, the Līgo. I am sure there are people from different corners of the world who could come up with plenty reasons why fishing belongs to their nation. Yet right here right now allow me to stick to my presumption and tell my story, wandering down memory lane. This story is not about the professional fishermen for whom fishing has been a daily job through generations. It is about the other kind that has much more to do with whenever there’ s the “inner call”  for it. 

As far as I can remember, my grandfather and my father have always loved fishing. You know…that “men thing” where a couple of relatives/friends get together right before the sun comes up on Saturday or Sunday (might be both if the passion for fishing is VERY strong) morning to disappear to some lake or the sea for several hours. And then return happy, relaxed and with whatever they have managed to wangle out of the water. Spring, summer, autumn, also winter – the weather never really mattered as long as the  purpose was clear. All those fishing rods, hooks, sinkers, hand tying “flies” and preparing baits. The rubber hip boots. Fishermen stories, that touch of specific humour with the saltiness of the water and sharpness of the wind. Slightly amusing when it got to the almost puerile but harmless boasting which was good for the spirit. 

I can’ t say I have “inherited” the gene of loving this spare-time activity (somehow I am a bit reluctant to call it  “just a hobby” though many might actually not see the difference and I don’ t blame them) but my ancestors have no reason to worry – it’ s covered by my brother. I have to admit I was lucky enough to often be a part of those weekend fishing trips, therefore even today I would be able to put a bait on a hook and cast it in the water. With the same grace and elegance of playing the piano, by the way. My father and his friends remember I did have much patience for my age, was a quick learner and, most importantly, never broke any of the fishing rods entrusted to me. You can always find something to do out in nature, especially being a child with quite a bit of imagination and meeting such a variety of people around. And overall it was precious time spent together with my father and grandfather. Today I would call it very Zen, too.

One of my father’ s most colourful fishing memories is when once being out at a lake enjoying scenery, silence and fishing, he suddenly heard the USSR anthem sang in full voice from the opposite shore. Imagine his surprise when a bit later he found out it was his own daughter, demonstrating her singing abilities after being asked “And what do you sing in choir these days?” by some other people fishing nearby. “Other people” turned out to be the Communist party secretary from the capital with his comrades from Moscow. A bit of an odd situation to be in, especially for my father, a man with his opinions very far from the Communist ones, in the middle of the 1980’ s in Soviet Latvia. My grandfather, who used to be a true believer (sorry, I am not a big fan of the word “patriot”) in the independence of Latvia (but unfortunately passed away few years before it was restored in 1991) found it very amusing to say the least, knowing there were completely different kinds of songs in my “repertoire” taught by him that might have raised a couple of questions for my parents if not gotten them into serious trouble.

The philosophy behind the fishing process…yes – is the pursuit of an idea… Either  fly fishing in a stream, ice fishing on a frozen lake for hours or casting nets in the sea. It is never about what you catch but what catches you, isn’ t it? “The charm of fishing is that it is the pursuit of what is elusive but attainable, a perpetual series of occasions for hope.”/J.Buchan/

P.S: Some videos you might enjoy:

The Old Man And The Sea

Salmon Fishing In The Yemen

Peculiarities Of The National Fishing (Russian: Особенности Hациональной Pыбалки)

A River Runs Through It

Weekly Photo Challenge: Thankful

I am thankful for a lot in life..for every possibility to be together with the loved ones…

…for the roof over my head…

…for the way nature takes my breath away…

…for the road ahead that always leads back home…and for so much more.

Sometimes we need to remind ourselves that thankfulness is indeed a virtue. /W.Bennett/

More of what we are thankful for here: Weekly Photo Challenge: Thankful