By Denise Inge
Author, educational, and adventurer, Denise Inge grew up in a wide and rambunctious family members at the east coast of the USA. She crossed the Sahara, charmed snakes in Marrakech and cycled the Adirondack mountains yet her most recent experience is an inside one. It begins with the invention that her home is outfitted on a crypt jam-packed with human skeletons. dealing with her worry of those strangers' bones takes her to different charnel homes in Europe and on a trip into the which means of bones themselves. This exploration, although it all started ahead of her prognosis with an inoperable sarcoma, takes on a brand new value while the query of residing good within the face of mortality without warning ceases to be hypothetical.
A journey of Bones is a passionate testomony to the conviction that residing is greater than now not loss of life and that considering mortality isn't really approximately being ready to die yet approximately being ready to live.
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Extra resources for A Tour of Bones: Facing Fear and Looking for Life
At Czermna, a little hamlet on the Czech/Polish border, we came across a small bone chapel. Then we found Hallstatt, a UNESCO World Heritage Site on Hallstattersee in the Austrian Lake District, where the charnel house skulls are decorated and named. Then, completely off the tourist trail, a simple charnel house in Naters, a village near the town of Brig at the foot of the Simplon Pass, one of the most beautiful passes in the Alps, constructed by Napoleon for his troops. We broke the small and remote rule, however, for one charnel house that curiosity compelled us not to miss – the frankly freaky ossuary at Sedlec in the Czech Republic with its famous bone chandelier.
I loved ghost stories told around the campfire, or high-level assault courses, or rappelling down rock faces. I have tombstoned into the icy waters of West Virginia lakes, and let the turbaned snake charmer in Marrakesh’s Djemma El Fna bid me kiss the serpent he had wrapped around my neck. Largely weightless, these thrilling experiences of fear asked no unanswerable questions. They were not illusory, but they were pretend. Serious danger is different. One time, when I was about nine, a dark lake’s water, green and cold, closed over me and I fought for air; there was a bigger girl up towards the light with straggly hair whom I nearly drowned in my grip, struggling towards the surface.
I find myself torn: on the one hand I want to flee, on the other I feel an urge to stay and try to sort them out, arrange them at least in tidy piles – the skulls in one place, the pelvises in another. Pulling the spluttering candle towards my chest I duck back-first through the narrow opening and raise myself on trembling elbows out of the trap door pit. Everyone is laughing at a joke I could not hear from below. I blink. * * * This is really when the journey began. It did not start when the airplane landed in Prague, when, jaded and hungry from travel, I was joined by Zuzana, a multilingual Slovak friend who had agreed to be my interpreter and travelling companion; nor even in the weeks preceding when, buoyant as sea-voyagers hoping for adventure, we had laid out our maps, surfing the internet for relevant sites, chortling at translations like the advert from a hostel that invited us to ‘fish our own trouts’ which would be served to us by the host’s ‘roasted wife’.