Family are supposed to be the most important people in your life - to love you and support you just for being who you are and doing what you do. I have been really lucky to have a second family in Peru who I had the chance to live with when I was 18 - we still keep in touch, and I had the opportunity to be with them for the year last year. They have always been honest with me, loving, caring, and generally amazing. They support my dreams and goals in just how they act and take an interest in what I do - they are a super loving family and do the same with all the members of their family - because of them I know even more the true meaning of unconditional love and support. I thank them a million times over and over and feel incredibly lucky and thankful to have met them. Everyday I thank them for showing me a better world.
So I'll be back home, in Calgary, closer to the end of August. It will have been a year - and what a year! Between working with the NGO and running a photo project, developing curriculum, teaching university classes, and working on my painting, its been great. But, I am very excited to come back home and of course be with family and friends, and even to begin starting again. That said, I will also miss Peru a lot. I know that, I always do, and this time more so as I'll be leaving good friends and my Peruvian family and most especially my super cute nephew - he just turned one.
Yesterday was one of those days where I really wished I could've been at home with the family. So not only was my brother celebrating his 30th birthday yesterday, but he also announced his engagement to his long time girlfriend. I am so excited for the two of them and wish them all the joy in the world. Congrats you two!! I'll celebrate with you in September!!
Tomorrow my little brother will turn 30!! He was such a cute kid and my best friend / partner in crime, and of course, now he is a very nice man. Zaak I am so proud of you, and wish I could be there to celebrate with you.
Birthdays are funny things - a milestone of how far we've come but also reminder of that sneaky passage of time.
I left a comfortable, fun and challenging teaching position in Calgary, Alberta last year and moved to Cusco, Peru. I had lived as a volunteer in Urubamba many years ago, which was more akin to a volunteer holiday position just out of high school.
This time, I was 30, and wanting to transition into art as a more full time career, and instead of doing I suppose what most would do, and start sending work to galleries, and in competitions and getting shows together, etc. I did not. And in a time where almost everyone I know is getting married and having babies and settling into lives in their cities, I ran away to the Andes to "rediscover myself" and also of course to work. I worked with an NGO doing a photography project with children, designed curriculum, and did a little marketing and research, and then after that stint was done, I started working at the Art School of Cusco as an animation and graphic design teacher and also taking courses in painting - which is where I think my true passion lies. I just love the colours and textures, and the mixing of paint and seeing my ideas and visions come to life on canvas. I love that I'm not in front of a screen, and that the work is hands on and messy and that I can be as detailed or sporadic as I want.
So I had a million ambitions coming down here and lost myself in the process, and then re-discoved many things apart from my true passion.
Some of the things I've learned and re-learned are that:
Another decade gone. I am now three decades in - OMG.... I made it to thirty!!
In regards to energy - I have a little bit less energy than in my early twenties; but it's more channeled and I waste less time so really... no biggie. Looks wise - I guess a bit older, but then I suppose that happens to us all. Am I happy with myself and my achievements - so far so good. I can always do more, but I figure slow and steady :)
So turning thirty - I suppose some cry, some run away to Vegas to party, and others have full extravaganzas with their friends and family, and yet others do nothing. Well... I just wanted a low key day by the ocean, filled with walking, and so I went to Vancouver for a weekend (my dad joined - which was fantastic) - and we did just that - walked and walked and walked by the ocean - on top of it all, the weather couldn't have been more perfect; and it was perfect!!
Hello! My name is Tahira Karim. I was born and raised on the Canadian prairies have been leaving and returning ever since. I absolutely love to travel. I am an observer of life and culture, and I have a passion for history and food. I am a visual artist who specializes in painting and drawing. And this blog is a jumble of my writing and thoughts on travel, culture, and food, with a bunch of personal stories thrown into the mix. Enjoy!