The ever-so-handsome actor Sam Durant Hunter. We had an amazing head shot session in Inwood Hill Park a few weeks ago. Then we ate tacos and drank wine. Check em out! Check out Sam's site too! Such a talent! http://www.samduranthunter.com/
On Friday I took a little fall hike in Clarence Fahnestock State Park with my uncle Brian and my boyfriend Matt. We parked near Hubbard Lodge and headed out on a 7.5 mile loop which resulted in some accidental detours. We ended up near a lake, then bushwhacked (hiking off trail using a compass) about 3/4 mile to find another trail which then lead us to a creepy old rickety house. And all the while they were talking about clowns popping out of the woods. Gotta love your family.
A Repost From Nepal July 9th 2016
The greatest failure in life is failure to try. Being afraid of the unknown and different things is the greatest burden one could ever put upon themselves. With travel comes new people, new experiences, new emotions, new everything. So far while in Nepal I have tried different food, never knew what the hell momos or dal bhat was until now. I've met new people and began learning a new language. I've opened myself to strange situations and in return have learned new skills.
One thing I've learned is that if you open yourself up to other people in a positive way, you receive positive energy back. To observe and practice this, I strapped my camera onto my back yesterday with loads of rain gear (it looked rather rough when I left) and ventured out into Lalitpur.
The goal of my venture was to ask every person that I found interesting, intriguing, and friendly if I could take their photograph. Now, for me, this was difficult. I don't normally approach people on the streets and ask to take photos of them.
So the first few were hard, but the people here are so damn nice that only about 3 of the 35 or so people I asked said no! I learned a few phrases from my Nepalese friend at community office how to ask "How are you?" "What is your name?" "My name is Jaci." "Can I take your photograph?" "You look very beautiful" "Thank you" Basic stuff so I didn't seem intrusive. And like any place I've been, people appreciate the effort you make even if you sound like a complete idiot, it makes people laugh!
So go outside, try something new, put your fears behind you. It feels good and it's different than the mundane. Make some people smile, push out the negativity, and bring only positive energy to this world. We all need it.
“Happiness is achieved when you stop waiting for your life to begin and start making the most of the moment you are in.” ― Germany Kent
Repost From Nepal July 12th, 2016
Have no fear of moving into the unknown, simply step out fearlessly. It is within the unknown that one can discover, learn, and find inspiration.
Today I took a walk in the back streets and alleys of the residential neighborhood I have been living in. The neighborhood was scattered with little shops out of people's homes selling cold coca-cola and crispy snacks. Everyone friendly as usual here in Nepal. After walking in the scorching midday heat, I stopped off at one of these shops and purchased a coke in a glass bottle and a little bag of chips. I started to walk off but the shop owner gestured me back, trying to explain to me that he needed the glass bottle back. (He must get some sort of money when he turns in back in) So I happily sat on his shaded patio, enjoyed my cold beverage and watched people walk by in the streets.
The pace of life here is much different than that of what I am used to. It's slower, yet still efficient, crazy yet surprisingly secure. Things I never would have expected could exist in harmony, exist together here in Nepal. Crazy and calm, slow and efficient, dirty and cozy, simple but at the same time so complex.
"You do not travel if you are afraid of the unknown, you travel for the unknown, that reveals you with yourself." - Ella Maillart
Repost from Nepal July 22nd 2016
The wonders of travel are endless. Smells, tastes, voices, laughter, mountains, rivers, they all stand strong in my memory of each place I have visited. There are nooks and crannies that will forever lie undiscovered, but the ones I have been gifted with, nestled themselves in my memory bank, and have sewn together the person I am today.
“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” – Mark Twain
I have had my moments where I have been terrified to take a step forward, unsure of my path, nervous with where I am. However, it is the thrill of the unknown, the stimulation of each and every new step that carries you from one new place to another... That is the true magic of travel.
With new places, come new faces. New laughs, new jokes, new friends. I've never met a lovelier bunch of humans than I have here in Nepal. So bright, full of life, abundant with energy. Their laughs travel for miles and resonate in your heart for a lifetime.
“For my part, I travel not to go anywhere, but to go. I travel for travel’s sake. The great affair is to move.” –Robert Louis Stevenson
A Repost From Nepal July 7th, 2016
Through a whirlwind of travel, jetlag, a strange hotel room, and loony cab rides, I finally found myself at my new home in Satdobato. The mountains are wild, the city is bustling, and the nights are cool and filled with the sounds of dogs barking. I felt nervous, happy, excited, scared, homesick, adventurous; a true hurricane of emotions. With the encouragement of family and friends I was able to concentrate my energy on only the power of good. From these feelings and from my experience with local Nepalese people I have started an exploration of happiness and meditation.
I believe true happiness is only ever possible if you have been unhappy. Without the darkness there can never be light. Whichever way you want to put it, you cannot have one without the other. The path to happiness is different for every person; for me it is travel, cultural exploration and philanthropy. To guide and center myself on my path, I chose meditation. Not once have I meditated in my life. It seemed utterly impossible for me. I was unable to relax, concentrate on my breathing, or clear my head. However, being here in Nepal has allowed me to take each day at a time. A steady pace and philosophy has prevented me from being swamped by my problems and emotions. During my meditation sessions I am truly starting to find a peace and internal happiness: a comfort within my own self.
Not only during my meditations sessions but during my conversations with locals, I feel at peace. So content with where I am and what I am doing. It feels as though it would not be possible for me to take in any more happiness. You can smile and look at the people around and they smile back as if they know. I realized then that these moments and this wonderful feeling would sustain me for a long, long time.
"Do not dwell in the past, do not dream of the future, concentrate the mind on the present moment." - Buddha
Teamwork is the capacity to work together toward a common objective and the ability to direct individual skills toward group success and achievement. It is the fuel that allows extraordinary people to attain remarkable results.
On the project sites in Nashtar and Chuwatar, the 16J volunteers and their communities are the epitome of collaboration, teamwork, and an energetic and diligent work ethic. Volunteers are amped to be trailblazers for a new project concept, WASH, (Water and Sanitation and Hygiene) and have gotten the ball rolling quickly. With a common goal and a few shovels, the team has taken bold leaps every day to achieve what needs to be done in their brief, but productive 5 week time frame.
From the photographer stand point, I was able to not only swing a pick axe, but also step back and observe the dynamic synergy that was beginning to develop between Raleigh volunteers and local community members. Every time I looked up from my triumphant shoveling efforts, volunteers and community members were laughing, teaching each other their respective languages, and working together to accomplish our daily goal. Even though there is a difficult language barrier, volunteers were seamlessly acclimating to the efficient style of the community and adopting new methods of work.
Through these photographs, one can visually experience the comradery between volunteers and community members developing and new techniques being ratified. With trenches being dug, pipeline getting laid, and pick axes being swung, the volunteers and community members of 16J are continuously hard at work.