My gratitude project… Parque Roosevelt.

Since I started the year, I have been looking for a project that would be a support vehicle to regularly express my gratitude. Sometimes, through the course of my life, I tend to focus on the things that are not working as I would like, forgetting the many blessings that already are…  Since we got to Uruguay, I have been regularly walking KC in Parque Roosevelt (Roosevelt’s Park).  It turns out that this huge piece of land just outside Montevideo, belonged many, many years ago to my grandma’s grandfather, who donated it to become a reserved park.  Crazy that in my many years living in Uruguay, I had not even visited this place.  As I was walking in the woods today, it suddenly hit me.  This is, and has been my gratitude project all along.

Every time I walk KC, I will take with me a little Leica pocket camera.  It’s something slightly more sophisticated than a point and shoot, since it allows for greater creative control.  As we enter the park, KC gracefully drops his rear on the land waiting to be freed of the confinement of the leash.  As I do release him, he’ll perform the same routine over and over, just run out, almost bouncing as he does when he is overly excited; pee and then run back like a maniac towards me…  We just walk through the trees, not following any specific trail.  For me, the experience of the fallen leaves, and the sound they make as I step on them, it’s almost a meditation in itself.  For KC, it is clearly his place.  This guy was made for the woods… I can just tell how he feels at home in here.  Besides, the smells, and occasional (ok, sadly not so occasional) trash, with the added bonus of some cow and horse manure, this place a true delight for him.  To my surprise, as I continue to go, I continue to be inspired to photograph.  I thought that over time, I would get old; that nothing new would awaken my eye and my inspiration.  But rather, the more I go, the more I like what I see, and the more I discover.  A few days ago I was rewarded for always carrying the camera with me.  As I was almost leaving the park, not having taken any image that I felt was good, I turned around and there it was… the most amazing light.  Just another reason to be grateful…  It’s a blessing to be able to simply get out and walk in the woods…

Parque Roosevelt, Canelones, Uruguay – Images by Martin Herrera