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Periaktoi Writing Post

Volume 54
Issue 1

Single Visual Art Post

  • Essay
Instagram Photo Narrative: Alpine Adventure
Ian Campbell


As I stood taking deep breaths of thin Alpine air on the edge of a snowy mountain peak that Hitler used as a retreat and hideout, it occurred to me that, although Hitler killed millions of people and committed horrific war crimes, he built his hideout, The Eagle’s Nest, on the highest mountain in Berchtesgaden in order to receive a heavy dose of the thing, which currently consumed me: nature. Although the mountain provided a great defense for Hitler, the same view that aided him in war also supplemented my need for breathtaking views. Throughout the German countryside below, the quaint and simplistic cottages, which appeared everywhere on the ride up the mountain, looked like mere ants vulnerable to the foot of a giant, and as a result, I felt an extreme sense of power, which, to my recollection, presented an unparalleled feeling within me. In addition to that, out in the distance, I spotted a lake, which embodied the unique light blue color that only German lakes produce, reflecting the sun’s harsh and unforgiving rays back up to the mountains, which stood at least six thousand feet in height. As a result of the Tennessean within me, the snow, which covered the mountains, left me speechless due to the fact that Tennessee never receives snow and most definitely not in June, and much like the other students, my attention quickly shifted from the breathtaking view of the valley to the snow, which crunched and morphed underneath the weight of my body. Despite the fact that I never understood what people meant when they described the beauty of nature, my journey through the Bavarian Alps gave me an appreciation for nature, which, without that trip, would still represent a void in my understanding.