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Traveling Light
The Seattle Times
Traveling Light
Paris, France Provence, France Teotitlan del Valle, Mexico San Miguel de Allende, Mexico
Provence, France

One beautiful day in June, I set out to explore the Abbaye du Thoronet, a monastery in Provence.

Eventually I find a scene I want to photograph: the long corridor of the cloister where monks once walked in prayer. Sunlight floods through the arches and glows off the Romanesque ceiling.

It is easy to imagine dozens of monks in woolen robes, treading these halls over the centuries. It is easy to imagine that their spirits still linger.

Halfway into the third 10-minute exposure, I hear Gregorian chants floating from the church behind me. How nice that there is music, I think, as I stand to look for the source.

I look in the church, but find no music. Walking away from my camera as it continues the long exposure, I look down the hallway. Nothing. I look in the large room on the other side of the cloister. Nothing. Perhaps it was someone's Walkman. And then again, perhaps it was something emanating from the building, ancient voices, that one hears if one sits there for a long time taking pictures.

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All photos used in Traveling Light may not be used without
expressed written consent from Rosanne Olson

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