I Did Not Come Here to Lose – Boxeo in Cuba

Three years ago, I was lucky enough to visit the Rafael Trejo Gimnasio in Havana, Cuba during the morning workout.  I met the most amazing men – so incredibly determined and fierce.  Last month, I was able to return and was thrilled to find one of those gentlemen at the gym and working just as hard. And, as his shirt attests, he did not come there to lose!

LisaBrockman_20140327_CUBA_6339-Edit

Again, the boxers and their coach, Papa Nardo Mestre, were kind enough to let me hang around and document their workout.   I sure hope I get the chance to get back there again.

LisaBrockman_20140327_CUBA_6420-Edit

Enjoy their hard work!

Lisa

April 2014

LisaBrockman_20140327_CUBA_6435-Edit

LisaBrockman_20140327_CUBA_6448-Edit

LisaBrockman_20140327_CUBA_6480-Edit

LisaBrockman_20140327_CUBA_6494-Edit

LisaBrockman_20140327_CUBA_6582-Edit

LisaBrockman_20140327_CUBA_6111-Edit

LisaBrockman_20140327_CUBA_5887-Edit

LisaBrockman_20140327_CUBA_5918-Edit

LisaBrockman_20140327_CUBA_5949-Edit

LisaBrockman_20140327_CUBA_5968-Edit

LisaBrockman_20140327_CUBA_6010-Edit-2

LisaBrockman_20140327_CUBA_6047-Edit

LisaBrockman_20140327_CUBA_6055-Edit

LisaBrockman_20140327_CUBA_6067-Edit

Posted in Cuba, Photography, Sports | Tagged , , , , , | 6 Comments

Sri Lanka – The Pinnawala Elephants

LisaBrockman_20130810_Kandy_818Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage, in the hills of Sri Lanka near Kandy, is an orphanage, nursery and captive breeding ground for wild Asian elephants. With close to 100 elephants, nestled in 25 acres of coconut forest, Pinnawalla has the largest herd of captive elephants in the world. Originally established by the Sri Lankan Department of Wildlife Conservation to care for orphaned unweaned wild elephants.

LisaBrockman_20130810_Kandy_885

On a daily basis (at scheduled times) the females and calves are herded together by the mahouts and walked right through the center of the village from the sanctuary to the Oya River where they bathe and hang out for a few hours before being herded back to the Sanctuary. It is quite the tourist attraction, complete with snack bars and viewing areas – and lots of tourists. That said, if you wander off to the edges where there are no human-creature comforts, you can be rewarded with some up-close, highly entertaining fun with the elephants – especially the youngsters who are all about rolling around in the water and are quite curious about the humans watching them.

LisaBrockman_20130810_Kandy_562I have mixed feelings about the orphanage. I started to write more here and have finally decided not to. If you are interested in the issue, there’s lots of info available on the internet to help you come to your own conclusions. For now, I will just share some images taken in the Oya River. Enjoy the elies . . . .

Lisa

LisaBrockman_20130810_Kandy_498

LisaBrockman_20130810_Kandy_500

LisaBrockman_20130810_Kandy_536

LisaBrockman_20130810_Kandy_862

LisaBrockman_20130810_Kandy_870

LisaBrockman_20130810_Kandy_822

LisaBrockman_20130810_Kandy_556

LisaBrockman_20130810_Kandy_595

LisaBrockman_20130810_Kandy_687

LisaBrockman_20130810_Kandy_997

LisaBrockman_20130810_Kandy_697

Posted in Photography, Sri Lanka, Travel | Tagged , , , , , , | 5 Comments

The Banana Men of Pettah Market – Colombo Sri Lanka

LisaBrockman_20130808_Colomobo_510

In Pettah Market, the banana men work hard.  It is hot (really hot).  The men carry many pounds of bananas on their backs and shoulders.  Their shirts are pulled up over their shoulders to provide a place to hold their cargo where the sweat of their bodies won’t cause it to slip off.  Most wear only ragged flip-flops on their feet.  Bent half over from the weight, they transport the bananas from the trucks to the steamy warehouses and back out to the waiting trucks of the buyers.  They do this with little more than the strength of their own bodies and and perhaps, if they are lucky, with a claw-hook to help hold the bananas bunches secure.  It is hard, hard work.  Yet they took the time to smile and engage with me – pose for a few photographss and laugh at the results on the back of my camera.  Then on to the next load . . .

LisaBrockman_20130808_Colomobo_462

LisaBrockman_20130807_Colombo_046

LisaBrockman_20130809_Colombo_694

LisaBrockman_20130809_Colombo_847

LisaBrockman_20130809_Colombo_717

LisaBrockman_20130808_Colomobo_505

LisaBrockman_20130809_Colombo_764

LisaBrockman_20130808_Colomobo_515

LisaBrockman_20130809_Colombo_669

LisaBrockman_20130809_Colombo_776

LisaBrockman_20130809_Colombo_742

LisaBrockman_20130809_Colombo_885

LisaBrockman_20130809_Colombo_867

LisaBrockman_20130809_Colombo_890

More from Sri Lanka to come . .

Lisa

Posted in Photography, Sri Lanka, Travel | Tagged , , , , , , | 10 Comments

Stoned in Peru

LisaBrockman_20130511_Chinchero_042

Inca Stoned, that is . . .

In Peru, the Sacred Valley of the Incas, high in the Andes, is all about the stones.  Stone walls. Stone steps. Stone monuments. Stone buildings.  Stones.  Stones.  Stones.  And wow, are they stunning.

Add in the magnificence of the Andes and, of course, Machu Picchu  . . . and you have a truly spectacular landscape.

Happy New Year to All!  May 2014 be filled with love and adventure!

Lisa

LisaBrockman_20130511_Chinchero_104-Edit

LisaBrockman_20130511_Chinchero_045-Edit

LisaBrockman_20130511_Chinchero_035-Edit

LisaBrockman_20130509_Cusco_655-Edit

LisaBrockman_20130509_Cusco_677-Edit

LisaBrockman_20130509_Cusco_715-Edit

LisaBrockman_20130509_Cusco_720-Edit

LisaBrockman_20130511_Chinchero_079-Edit-2-Edit-2

LisaBrockman_20130512_Oilantaytambo_172-Edit

LisaBrockman_20130512_Oilantaytambo_181-Edit-Edit

LisaBrockman_20130512_Oilantaytambo_303-Edit

LisaBrockman_20130512_Oilantaytambo_207-Edit

LisaBrockman_20130512_Oilantaytambo_191-Edit-Edit

LisaBrockman_20130514_MachuPicchu_291_HDR-Edit LisaBrockman_20130513_MachuPicchu_091_HDR-EditLisaBrockman_20130513_MachuPicchu_139_HDR-EditLisaBrockman_20130514_MachuPicchu_245-Edit

 

Posted in Peru, Photography, Travel | 8 Comments

Peru – Slow Time in Pisac

A couple of slow days in the Inca Valley town of Pisac and the surrounding hills.  Sunday market.  Sunday church.  Llamas.  Weavers.  And beautiful vistas.  Smiling faces.

Good days.

LisaBrockman_20130509_Pisac_008

LisaBrockman_20130510_Pisac_445

LisaBrockman_20130510_Pisac_582

LisaBrockman_20130509_Pisac_119

LisaBrockman_20130509_Pisac_098

LisaBrockman_20130510_Pisac_247

LisaBrockman_20130510_Pisac_618

LisaBrockman_20130510_Pisac_302

LisaBrockman_20130510_Pisac_871

LisaBrockman_20130510_Pisac_780

LisaBrockman_20130510_Pisac_441

LisaBrockman_20130510_Pisac_666

LisaBrockman_20130510_Pisac_984

LisaBrockman_20130510_Pisac_275

LisaBrockman_20130510_Pisac_892

Posted in Peru, Photography, Travel | Tagged , , , , , , | 9 Comments

Happy Christmas!

LisaBrockman_20131223_StellaXmas_064-Edit-2-2Wishing you all a joyous Christmas and a New Year full of love, light and adventure!

Lisa

Posted in Uncategorized | 4 Comments

Peru – On Lake Titicaca

LisaBrockman_20130518_LakeTiticaca_340

High in the Andes is Lake Titicaca, 3,200 square miles of beauty on the border of Peru and Bolivia.  At 12,500 feet, it is the highest navigable lake on Earth.   Considered sacred by local cultures, the lake is said to be in the shape of a Puma chasing a rabbit – the name Titicaca loosely translates to Rock Puma.  I remember learning of the lake as a child – well, mostly I remember cartoons that featured the lake.  You have to admit, the name is unforgettable – especially to a child.

The lake contains 41 islands on which many Inca ruins remain.  These islands and the lake are considered by the Incas to be the birthplace of their people.  From the waters Viracocha is believed to have risen to create the world, the sun and the stars and to have created the first humans from stone – Manco Capac and Mama Ocllo.   On the islands are the birthplaces of Inti, the Incan sun god and Mama Quilla, the moon goddess.

The Incas believe that at death, the spirit returns to its place of origin – the Lake.

The lake is sadly, like so many natural wonders in the world, at risk from development, global warming and pollution.

A unique lifestyle exists here.  The Uru people live on 44 floating islands made entirely of reeds.  The original purpose of the islands was to provide security – they are completely moveable if threatened by nature or man.  Whole communities – from 2 to 10 families -live on these islands.  I visited 2 of the islands and met the most wonderful people.  Proud of their culture, their islands and their incredible textile work.

LisaBrockman_20130518_LakeTiticaca_329

LisaBrockman_20130517_LakeTiticaca_020

LisaBrockman_20130517_LakeTiticaca_027

LisaBrockman_20130517_LakeTiticaca_114

LisaBrockman_20130518_LakeTiticaca_431

LisaBrockman_20130518_LakeTiticaca_454

LisaBrockman_20130518_LakeTiticaca_353

LisaBrockman_20130518_LakeTiticaca_444

LisaBrockman_20130518_LakeTiticaca_447

Isla Taquile – a traditional, and very hilly, island near Puno is the property of the Taquille people.  On this island of about 3.5 square miles, life is kept in the traditional ways.  There are no cars and no hotels.  Most residents do not have electricity.  The community is operated as a collective according to the Inca moral code – ama sua, ama llulla, ama qhilla  - do not lie, do not steal, do not be lazy.   Most Taquilenos are Catholic, combining traditional beliefs with the ancient Andean religions.

The Taquilenos are masters of textile arts – the men do the knitting, starting as young boys, and the women make the yarn and do the weaving.  Unesco has honored the island as a “Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity”.

From all directions, the views of the lake are stunning.  

LisaBrockman_20130517_LakeTiticaca_260

LisaBrockman_20130517_LakeTiticaca_193

LisaBrockman_20130517_LakeTiticaca_191

LisaBrockman_20130517_LakeTiticaca_225

LisaBrockman_20130517_LakeTiticaca_207

LisaBrockman_20130518_LakeTiticaca_287

LisaBrockman_20130517_LakeTiticaca_166

Thanks for sharing a little bit of Peru with me,

Lisa

Posted in Peru, Photography, Travel | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 12 Comments