I posted this photo and writing just over a month ago. Today we received news that Uncle Andy has passed away. I wrote this a month ago in hopes I’d get to see him again soon, but it’s not to be. I wanted to share this image and these words I shared on here not long ago, as I think it pays tribute to the man he was. And to his two remaining sons (my cousins Bryan and Kevin), my heart hurts for you both. They have lost their brother, Mom and now Dad in the span of 2.5 years…

Cheeks lay bare an unquenchable and unattainable thirst for moisture and respite from the unrelenting high altitude sun. Scars will indelibly remind him of the harsh realities of existing above 15,000 feet, higher than most people will ever stand in their entire lives. But will he ever even see himself in a mirror? What’s vanity when the mirror in front of you showcases some of the most beautiful terrain on earth? What’s ego when the land will perpetually humble you until your time has expired?

His lungs will bulge. Impossibly large and strong. His heart will pump blood with the…

This porter walked throughout the night in the bitter cold without a headlamp in complete darkness because his load was so large that he took up the entire trail and had to maintain balance. If he were to have done it during the day, he would have encountered other porters and trekkers along the route, and he couldn’t readily move to the side on the narrow precipitous trails. He is arriving at 6am in Dingboche with construction material for a new teahouse.

230 pounds push his sinewy body forward with unrelenting force. A freight train unable to swiftly cease. Lonesome and solemn. Eyes fixated on the dusty path. The neck frozen stiff in place, hands delicately pushed against his face providing a center equilibrium so his body doesn’t unexpectedly torque. Sweat trickles down his brow perpetually burning his eyes. Slow and steady as he works his way carrying

Morning solitude with a moose. Perhaps these moments don’t teach us anything intellectually in particular, but they sure do spur our sense of being and wonder…enriching our core and etching their way indelibly into our human experience shaping our perspectives. Connecting with the land and the animals…even if only for a brief few moments.

Visual musings from my flawed and human cerebral.

Attempting to navigate away from the daily inundation and upheaval.

Not willing to accept myriad narratives promoting evil and the deceitful.

Run for the hills seeking nature’s guaranteed reprieve.

Solace and peaceful.

Basking in the dreamful.

Windmills and Passing Train. Merna, Nebraska.

In October 2020, I completed a 4,000 mile road trip. I was running from lots of thoughts and painful feelings as our country was in turmoil. I needed space to breathe and to find that sense of wonder and beauty in the world again.

Ryan Kost

Be Curious. Be Compassionate. Mental Musings and Visual Meanderings. Home is in Colorado. Guide in Peru. www.ryankostphotography.com

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