I think you can only be nostalgic for something you’ve lost.~Jim Jarmusch
This week, Tina is focusing on nostalgia–a great theme for this time of the year when we are flooded with reminders of holidays past and time spent with family and friends in celebration.
Nostalgia can heighten our pleasure in the present moment. This happens when we take actual trips down “memory lane” by revisiting places which we knew and loved in the past. Our pleasure is doubled and tripled as we return to these place, while thinking back on our experiences in the past.
During our stay in London in October, we learned about the nostalgia that the British feel for their countryside and small towns. To understand this, we took several trips throughout the U.K.
One place beloved by the British is Oxford, famous not only for its university, but also in popular culture. Dozens of books and movies have been set in this town–like Brideshead Revisited by Evelyn Waugh. If you haven’t seen the PBS mini-series based on this novel, I highly recommend taking the time to see it.
We spent an afternoon wandering around this charming town, visiting the university campus and stopping for tea at a local shop. Here you can see the famous Radcliffe Camera, on the Oxford campus, which has existed on this site for over 800 years, making it one of the oldest universities in the world. I loved the juxtaposition of the historic building and the modern bicycles on campus.
The city, which showcases a variety of architecture, is beautifully preserved. Even the doors were magnificent!
Nature inspires me because it’s so peaceful. It makes me have an inward experience. It makes me reflective and nostalgic.~Brett Dennen
On the same day, we visited the Cotswolds, known as one of the prettiest areas in England, which covers 787 square miles (2,040 km2). It is the second largest protected landscape in England. Here you can see the charm of a country lane and thatched cottages.
On another day, we explored Hampstead Heath in London with a wonderful new British friend. As we walked, she told us stories about the dogs, which she walked here over the years, and shared her memories of coming here as a child.
This ancient heath extends over 790 acres, and has wooded trails and a series of ponds, open for swimming. As you can see, dogs and their companions love to come here and enjoy long walks or quiet moments together.
In this open stretch of rolling hills, you can see several people walking–if you look closely. I love the changing leaves and the undulating landscape.
Now, that we’ve taken this nostalgic trip through the UK, I’ll end this post with a cautionary note about another type of nostalgia, which is misleading and dangerous. It is used by populist leaders who try to invoke the “good old days” of nationalistic pride, when life was supposedly simpler and less complicated. This is a dangerous illusion. History tells us that these leaders use nostalgia as a way of manipulating our emotions to achieve their own ends. This is their primary goal.
I also want to thank you all who participated in my “Abstract” challenge last week. Your responses were fabulous and truly inspired me to continue exploring abstract photography. Thank you!
Tina, Amy, Ann-Christine and I hope you join us for this week’s “Nostalgic” challenge. If you join us, include a link to Tina’s post. (Links from the Reader are not working correctly.) Use the Lens-Artists tag to help us find you. For instructions on how to join us, click here.
Next week, it’s Amy turn to host LAPC Challenge #76.
PLEASE NOTE we will not be publishing our challenge the week of December 21 to 27.
As always, Amy, Tina, Ann-Christine, and I thank you for your continued support of our photo challenge. Have an inspiring week!