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Packing up

Sunday, December 2, 2007 by Marianne Elliott

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Last night it snowed, our first real snowfall here in town. I snuck out early into the silent, gray morning to photograph the snow on the graveyard of out-of-service Russian jeeps outside my room.


The snowfall also finally propelled me into taking steps towards leaving Ghor. I've been postponing packing up and avoiding committing to a date to fly or drive down to Herat (can anyone say "denial"?) but seeing the snow made me realise that if I don't move soon I could be stuck here and miss out on my fabulous summer Christmas with my family in New Zealand. The airstrip here in Chegcharan is not sealed and nor are any of the roads, so once the snow arrives it is quite difficult to get aircraft in and almost impossible to get out by road. In other words, if I don't get out of here soon I may not get out.

So today I packed.

Now I may live the life of a gypsy, but I love to feather my nest. Wherever I travel I take photos of the people I love, treasured books, beautiful fabrics to throw over boring furniture, candles and pictures for the walls. Give me a dull, "standard-issue" staff accommodation unit and I'll make it my own. So this morning before starting on the packing I decided to photograph some of my favorite corners of my latest home, preserving it for posterity. Here, then, is a peek into Frida's nest:


A teeny Buddha sits on a even teenier book of wisdom.


My beloved piles of books


My beautiful Afghan beadspread, a gift from the Commander.


A fridge collage of goodness (yes, it's like a bloggy wall of fame, spot Swirly, Denise, Susannah and MJ)


The red trunk houses a shrine to my Bohos


Treasured collection of teas carried from all over the world


Another trunk, more special people


Wine bottle candleholders, if a bottle of wine makes it all the way up here then you can believe that I'm going to put it good use.


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14 Responses to "Packing up"

  1. Silvia says:

    i love this little peak inside your world. good luck with packing. i know that it can be hard to leave a place from experience. so i’m sending love your way 🙂

  2. Mandi says:

    I’m with you — I nest wherever I am, even if it’s only for a short while. I like to have a comfortable space that reflects me, is all mine and reminds me of the people and things I love. But it doesn’t make for easy packing. 🙂 Good luck!

  3. homeinkabul says:

    Perhaps I’m nosy (perhaps…) but I love the sneak peeek!

  4. boho girl says:

    ohhh…i love the peek into your beautiful space that you’ve created. it’s all so YOU. i am totally digging your clever idea with wine bottles as candle holders! brilliant. will try this. seeing the boho shrine made me smile and tear up at the same time. we miss you so much. i love you…xoxo

  5. Jeni says:

    It feels so intimate and warm your place. I love all the trinkets and photos…and yes, that beautiful bedspread. Thanks for sharing!

  6. Lin says:

    Frida…don’t have the right words….so for now…
    We are all with you every step of the way…and will wave goodbye on your way out…and breath in with excitement looking forward to the the new tomorrow…with fond memories of yesterday!

  7. susannah says:

    aw, i love these little bits of your home, the home you will recreate again in this next chapter… i love you and send you (admittedly invisible) hands to help as you move… i miss you today xoxox

  8. annieelf says:

    Thank you for inviting us into your home. It is as warm as your gift for life and loving.

  9. Delia says:

    Travel well, Frida…

  10. Swirly says:

    I love getting a peek into your nest…it looks like a beautiful haven with many lovely pockets of calm.

  11. cath says:

    i love the peek into your space. and can i just say, i particularly love that you have wonderwoman on your fridge!! awesome!

  12. John Mullis says:

    Packing up is hard to do. Merry Christmas and every prayer for your work next year.

  13. well done capturing your favorite ‘corners’! I like the beauty in the details… much more interesting than just taking an over all picture! the snow looks so COLD and tantalizing to me, I really want to touch it… I am somehow hoping it snows over Christmas in Massachusetts as it’s been ages since I’ve seen or felt snow!! :O) hope the packing went well.

  14. Melanie says:

    This is one of my favourite posts in a wee while. It struck a cord in me that I didn’t even know was waiting to be struck! Going in to what is supposed to be the happiest time of the year has turned out to be more stressful than any other period in my life with past demons refusing to stay in the past and new demons surfacing to add their two cents. I wish I could create in myself such a warm and peaceful space of tranquility as you have created in your make-shift home. A place that is all about goodness and is a retreat when times are tough. I smile through my tears (funny the things that make you cry)as I got a sneak peek into your own special place. Your passion and love for all that life is amazes me more with each blog and my admiration grows.
    Travel home safely, people like you are rare and precious.

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