Passing on my blue genes and watery dreams

Michel and Jules, Cannes, French Riviera, 1975.

To Noah, with love, always …

Life is passing by – fast and furious, like a torrent fed by the eternal snows of the Kilimanjaro.

I feel like a fish in the river.  Fighting the surge … carried by the current towards the deep dark blue of pelagic eternity.

I love the water on my skin.  I love the first bite of the cold.  I love feeling alive.  I love feeling the evolution of life carried in my genes.  The fish bones in my spine.  The lungs of cetacean cousins in my chest.  I love the meditation of the swim … the slow crawl of ideas propelled by the torsion of my muscle in this long and continuous rhythmic dance.

I love diving alone.  I love the solitude of the reef.

Does the river even know of my existence?  What trace does a fish leave behind in the water?  An undulation … a shadow … a spark … a few ripples … there a moment and gone with the flow …  Nothing much really I am thinking – even the big fishes with their big wings … just a few ripples ….

The river will run for ever – without memories – fresh every day, always fast and furious.

I have a rather sad nostalgic nature … « nostalgique et désabusé » as Jane B. would say.  I have a poor memory and yet I remember so well what is important in life and in people.

I found some old photographs.  In one of them I am the same ages as Noah … maybe a few months older, at most.  I look like a fish jumping out of water.  Out of the blue.   « La Grande Bleue » as they call it in the south of France.  I remember it well.  I still feel the freedom of the flight and the embrace of the sea.

Fathers look at their sons.  They look for traces, for shadows, sparks and ripples.  I see some of my instinctive undulations in his smiles.

I think that he loves the water as well.  Not cold like the streams of the Kilimanjaro.  He has his mother’s African blood – closer to Matobo or the Okavango delta.

Fathers look at their sons.  They see life gushing by.  They see their genes passing by … blue, like water on pebbles.

When I was Noah’s age, fourteen or fifteen at most, I went to Brussels and bought two pairs of blue jeans with my pocket money.  The real Levi Strauss 550 – 31-32 – from Frisco.  My favorite jeans.  I wore them for ten years at least … until the 31 no longer fit.  Later, in my years of 32’s and 33’s, I thought with nostalgia of these first jeans … and with foolish hope never gave them up.

Now, forty years later, I passed them to my son … with the hope that one day, in another thirty or forty years, these jeans will be passed to his son.

Life is passing by – fast and furious – and blue are the genes passing with the flow …

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About Michel Botman

Michel Botman was born in Belgium, where visual arts have always flirted with the limits of reality. In the eighties, Michel Botman started exploring the first tools to manipulate images though computers. For about 15 years, Michel Botman worked throughout Europe in the emerging field of Computer Applications for the Graphic Arts. Extensive experience in Digital Imaging allowed Michel to move into the field of computerized systems for Diagnostic Imaging. As VP Sales & Marketing for eSys Medical and later with Eclipsys, Michel Botman always remained dedicated to the creativity and innovation that are at the heart of his career. At the present time, Michel Botman is refocusing his life towards graphic arts. “I studied photography in Europe, but never had time to practice it enough. Life took me on other paths towards computer technologies and running a business. I enjoyed it very much, but I also love art. I always keep my eyes open for exciting opportunities and people that touch my heart.” Michel Botman lives in Toronto with his wife Lindy and son Noah. Above Gravatar pictures are of Michel Botman, his wife Lindy Amato and his son Noah Botman.
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