Another Ramadan has come and gone. A sure sign of the relentless passing of time. As always, it’s been a time of trials and tribulations. Of sincere prayers and deep reflections. A time of lucid late evenings and tired early mornings. And, as always, a time of failure and of success.
Today, on the eve of the last day of this holy month, I pray that I get to experience another opportunity to seek the ultimate benefits of my prayers together with my loved ones yet again.
May Allah accept our attempts in the month that has passed, and grant us the opportunity to improve our efforts in the future. I wish all Muslims a happy and blessed Eid al-Fitr!
The landscape lay before me like a painting. If there could ever exist a perfect painting, that is.
But no human creation could possess such beauty. Such blend of form and function. None.
Taking it all in, I saw the final photograph in my mind’s eye. A beautiful piece of art, able to stir in the viewers heart, the same emotions that I felt inside me. A frozen moment in time, capturing forever the brilliance of the scene before me.
It pained me though, to realize that I could never make that happen. How could I ever capture the grandness of it all? The smell of moss in the air. The sound of grass rippling in the water by the gentle breeze. Then softness of the ground.
No matter how good the gear, or how advanced the tools, I would not succeed. No, a photograph would be but a poor portrayal of my experience of nature’s magnificent spectacle
Heavy rains were forecasted for the entire day, and that is exactly how it started on that August morning as we found ourselves gearing up for the hike.
The Norwegian summer can be unpredictable, especially this late in the season, so even though we had been hoping until the last minute to see an improvement in the forecast, we were fully prepared for a wet and windy experience. Although that could be an adventure in itself, my main concern was missing out on the view from the summit if the clouds did not clear.
Luckily, we only saw light rain as we made our way up, and the winds drove most of the low hanging clouds away by the time we reached the summit. As we were standing at the top the sun broke through, giving us a spectacular show of shadows, light, and color, fulfilling the promise of “the finest vantage point” in Luster!
This is when the photographer got his moment, the image was made, and all hardship was forgotten.
Photo from my archives (2010). Crowd weaving their flags and cheering as the children’s parade walk by, in celebration of the Norwegian constitution day on May 17th at “slottsparken” (the Palace Park), near the Royal Palace, downtown Oslo, the capital of Norway.
Every year, as the month of Ramadan draws close, I feel like standing before a mountain to be climbed, wondering if I will have what it takes to make it all the way to the top. This year, with 20-hour days in the middle of the summer, that mountain seemed taller than ever.
Now, with only a day left of of fasting, reflecting back, I admit to myself that I didn’t take the ideal route to the top. In fact, it wasn’t even a particularly elegant one. Still, somehow, I feel I got there. And I pray that it counts.
May Allah accept our sacrifices in the month that has passed, and grant us the opportunity to improve our efforts in the future.