“For a sudden period of four years, in my teens, I lived in Europe. Exiled from my life at home, and discovering the meaning of freedom, I took advantage of the cheapest student Eurail train program, and went wild, exploring every country I could get to on a meager dime. An awkward kid in foreign places, I did this alone, with headphones, a notebook, and little else. The motion of the trains, the process of escaping, perpetually, the solitude - it became like a drug. I went to every country in Western Europe that I had time to get to, scribbling in my 99 cent composition books, the music in my headphones a soundtrack to a real life movie of motion.         

Seven years after returning home, I was comfortable; domesticated, in love, I owned a car and a dog, I had a beautiful house, and I didn’t recognize myself. I was homesick for the loneliness of my youth. It was as if everything good I had ever created came from solitude, distress, restless boredom... and the blurred windows of a train. Taking nothing but fifty rolls of film and an empty notebook, I embarked on my personal Great Escape. Chasing nothing in particular, save that solitude, I drifted through six countries by rail, writing and photographing whatever compelled me, for six weeks.        

In the end, I found my loneliness, I kissed it, and I let it go - a rare instance of finding exactly what you’re looking for. These are the images I created on my vision quest, 2009.”

Friday, June 19, 2009

I'm on the Metro in Paris, and I am standing next to a small, overweight, middle aged dyke wearing all black, including a down jacket and heavy work boots in this heat of summer's beginnings.

She is emanating a sickeningly sweet stench of body odor and unwashed vagina. It has permeated everything and everyone in the car, poisoning them into a placated numbness. I will think that my shirt smells like this for three days.

She is planted, feet firmly placed, unmoving, and she stares straight ahead, not seeing us, the throngs surrounding her, our presence registering vaguely behind her black Oakley sunglasses. This is only visible because she nervously clenches and unclenches her jaw like a beast on the defensive.

She is so far beyond 'I dont care what the world thinks or expects of me', she has exploded into a new stratosphere of untamed aloneness, surrounded by a flock of invisible antagonists. Her, and I, linguistically barred, are as close as one can get to being alone in a crowd.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Mother nature takes her visitors lying down, conducting business flat on her back. Her breasts, nipples dipped in snowy white powder, pointed straight up to the sky.Unlike The Dude, her mountains abide for nothing, no schedule of seasons.

It is hailing like holy fuck right now, and it is the middle of June.

We are waking up at 5, to accommodate nature's moody time table, and catch a glimpse of the famous 'pink dolomites'.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

The maid refused to come in to the pool. The sun was rising behind us, the towels were high thread count, and the girl who was asking was naked and beautiful. But the maid just smiled and shook her head, laid down a fresh pile of the black towels and kept cleaning the roof deck.

Later I asked her for a glass of water and took an apricot with entitlement. She was thrilled.

Monday July 13th, 2009

"Mr Churchill, you're drunk!"

"Madame, you are ugly. But in the morning, I will be sober."

© Copyright, iO Tillett Wright 2012

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