June 9, 2019 // Bakio, Basque Country, España
The waves crescendoed against the jagged rock at the base of the narrow pathway I crossed the bay onto the island. They tugged at the ancient walls, smoothing the stone in their wake. The worn path before me from thousand of travelers making their trek to ring the bell in the church stretched before me, miles long. The wind whipped at my hair and the salt stuck to my lips, cracking them. The bell rang louder and louder with every step and I rose into the clouds, screaming through the noise, begging to be heard. From the top, the spectacle of multicolored confetti that the minuscule people behind me formed stretched along the path and into the mountains behind me. The gradient change of the sea floors deep navy into an emerald green and finally a bright turquoise drew my attention again to the waves. The shrill cry of the bell filled the cacophony of sounds that echoed off of the stone walls reminding me of the history of the Basque people that resided in the mountains of northern Spain; isolated, their culture struggles to stay alive through the confetti of people aiming to disrupt their solitude.