That book. Really, if you have a chance and it was translated to the language your kids know, GRAB IT. Åsa Lind “Sandvargen”- the original is in Swedish. We read it in Polish and as far as I could gather from quick search on Amazon it’s been translated into German and French.
The main character is a little girl named Zackarina (Karusia for Polish readers). She reminds me of Ingrid SO much. I guess maybe that’s one reason I love this book and can read it on repeat for days. Zackarina lives in a little house by the sea and when her parents don’t want to play with her she goes down to the beach to play and talk to the Wolf of Sand. He always has time. He is sparkly and sandy and has been around since times immemorial. He is a teeny bit philosophical and explains stuff that Zackarina doesn’t understand. Like why Dad always wants to read a newspaper when she wants to play. Or where was she before she was born. Sand Wolf can also explain why there is no need to be afraid of monsters and darkness. Or how bruises are in fact medals that you get when you’ve done something brave (and a bit reckless). It’s really a wonderful gem of a book. One of my favorite chapters is about stories (translation is my own, forgive the imperfections):
Stories are hidden everywhere said Wolf of Sand. In leaves and sticks, dragonflies and screwdrivers and lost mittens.
‘My breath brings stories to life – he said – I make them more visible. So visible that even people can see them’
‘All right then. But how do leaves or mittens turn into books?’ – asked Zackarina
Wolf of Sand answered that it is very simple. It only requires someone to notice that leaf or mitten. And it’s got to be someone who can see stories. Someone who understand stories and can tell them to other people- by writing a book for example.
‘But some people don’t see or hear stories! – said Wolf of Sand – as if their heads were all corked up.’
‘I saw a story! A story in a leaf! – said Zackarina – I saw how it begins.’
‘Yes, children are gifted like that- said Wolf of Sand’
Camera wakes up my inner child. When I look through the viewfinder I see stories everywhere. I don’t think I will write a book anytime soon though. I have this one funny lens, it’s so light and plastic it almost feels like a toy. It’s called a Lensbaby and you can read more about it here. I have to say this lens, especially when I screw on the macro kit is probably the most effective in waking up that kiddo inside of me. Maybe it’s because it feels like it’s a toy? I just stop and stare at each plant, stone, bug and flower that I come across. What would be a one hour walk with the dog turns into two and a half, easily. Have to say holding the camera still with bouncy baby on my back is definitely not the easiest task :D
“Cuddle me I’m freezing”
Over the past few months I’ve enjoyed photographing nature more than I ever thought I would. Always considered myself “people photographer”. But maybe a better label would be a “storyteller”? You can find more of these small snippets in this gallery. Some of them were sitting on my hard drive for a long time. But the Wolf of Sand convinced me stories only become stories when you share them with other people.
Some are available for purchase as beautiful photographic prints in my newly opened store: