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Memories From Home

Memories From Home Winner

Relive the warmth and nostalgia of your homeland, where every snapshot is a page from your personal storybook. In this category, entrants are encouraged to share images that evoke the emotions and memories of their native land, transcending geographical boundaries and touching the hearts of viewers.

Winner: Photo by Anup Sharma

Anup Sharma

“In the heart of Sankhu, Nepal, a Gerbera Farm stands as both a visual delight and the source of livelihood for a dedicated woman. Her hands, engaged in the meticulous care of the vibrant blooms, symbolize not just a labor of love but a pragmatic connection to economic sustenance. Beyond its scenic allure, the farm attracts tourists, becoming a canvas for nature's artistry and a stage for the woman's entrepreneurial role. The beauty of the Gerbera Farm is not just picturesque; it is the cornerstone of her income, a testament to the fusion of nature's aesthetics and the practical pursuit of financial stability. Each petal she tends to carries the fragrance of prosperity, turning the landscape into a tapestry of economic opportunity. In this symbiotic dance between nature and labor, the Gerbera Farm becomes more than a floral haven—it is the source of her livelihood, where the beauty of flowers intertwines with the practicality of economic well-being.”

- Anup Sharma, is a Graduate Student from Nepal, studying Integrated Agricultural Sciences.

All Photos Submitted:

Jihyeon Yun

Title: First Love

"Amidst the golden sweep of the field, as if painted by the sun's own brush,
You sow seeds in my heart, a silent whisper of first love.
My soul may become a bouquet, rich and ever true,
A gift of blooms, from the heart's field, I'd give to you."

- Jihyeon Yun

Khizra Khan

“Tokyo! My birth place, where all my beloved ones are. Every single sight of Tokyo reminds me of my family, specially my mother. This is Sky tree tower, which me and my mother used to watch while it changes color every night while having some green tea from our balcony.”

- Khizra Khan

Javier Espinosa Gomez

"This is a picture of my grandma with some of her great-grandkids. ‘Mi abuelita’ lived to be 97, had 9 kids, 30 grandkids, from which I am the youngest one, 61 great-grandkids, and 1 great-great-grandson named Thiago.. he’s 5 years old now. My grandma lit up every room she walked into. She was a strong, witty, and independent women that worked relentlessly to raise 9 kids by herself after the early death of her husband. She not only gave life and breath to more than a 100 people.. but she touched and lit the heart of countless people during her lifetime. In loving memory of, Alicia Bárcena Alcalá 1924-2022."

- Javier Espinosa Gomez

Nishreeta Karki

"This photograph is from Swayambhunath Stupa, a UNESCO world heritage site in Kathmandu which has been the glory of Kathmandu: the capital city of Nepal since the 5th century and a sacred Buddhist pilgrimage often called " The Monkey Temple". This is a top tourist destination in Kathmandu, as it is believed the stupa emerged by itself there. "

- Nishreeta Karki

Padmapriya Muchumarri

“The Boudha Stupa has always been my special place. Since I was little, I loved visiting this Buddhist shrine near my home. It's semicircle in shape, with carvings all over it, and contains Buddha's relics. I'm not Buddhist but feel peaceful there. As a kid, I thought the carvings were so cool. Now as a teen, I still feel calm walking around it, touching the old stones. I watch the monks in crimson robes and listen to their soft chanting. Sitting under the big Buddha statue, I breathe deeply and feel relaxed. No matter how often I go, I notice new details in this oasis of art and quiet. The stupa is an old friend where I can think and find peace. It's my refuge and has stayed with me through life.”

- Shreya Upreti 

Padam Bhatt

"A Garden of Resilience

On one evening of my home visit days after 4 and half years, I stepped out into my house’s backyard with the phone’s camera in my hand, capturing the scene, that tells the story of dreams, love, sacrifice, and a symbol of hope. The photo told a tale of dreams, love, sacrifice, and hope. My 62-year-old mother, now caring for my abandoned kids, bore unexpected responsibilities after their mother's departure during my Texas State studies. The image embodied her selfless devotion and love, echoing my nostalgia for my family, farm, and village. Beyond an image, it was a testament to the extraordinary strength of family bonds, representing my own odyssey as a Ph.D. student who drew courage from family sacrifices. Every leaf, wrinkle on my mother's face, and radiant smile told a profound story of resilience, love, and relentless pursuit of a brighter tomorrow."

- Padam Bhatt

Sushmit Sharma Bhattarai

“Under the twilight sky in Kathmandu, the Indra-Jatra festival unfolded in a dazzling display. Illuminated against the evening canvas were three resplendent chariots. The first, bearing the living goddess Kumari, exuded regality, captivating the crowd with her serene presence. Following closely, the Ganesh Chariot showcased intricate artistry, accompanied by rhythmic traditional music, blessing the onlookers with divine charm. The Bhairab Chariot, representing power and intensity, added an awe-inspiring element to the procession. As the chariots wove through the ancient streets, a vibrant sea of people, lit by the soft glow of lamps and incense, gathered in awe and devotion. The convergence of spirituality and celebration under the starlit sky created a memorable tableau, leaving an indelible mark on the rich cultural tapestry of Kathmandu, Nepal.”

- Sushmit Sharma Bhattarai

Padmapriya Muchumarri

“This photo, taken on my birthday, captures a truly special moment. I cherish the elegance of wearing a saree, a tradition we Indians embrace for various occasions. The setting is Malabar, a jewel store, where the employees celebrated my birthday. I miss the chance to forge connections and learn more about each other during this memorable celebration.”

- Padmapriya Muchumarri 

Kaushal Yadav

“When you are from a land of the highest mountain, you are bound to be asked silly questions like, “So, have you climbed Everest?” No, I haven’t. But like with every climb in Nepal, you will be mesmerized by the view as much as you have expected from the world's highest point! This is Phoksundo-the deepest Lake of Nepal. Though not among the highest, this mountain range as it bounds the lake, doesn’t fail to amaze you with its magnificence. They add turquoise tranquility to the lake from its melting snow which eventually makes its way to meet the greater ocean. I grew up watching the mountains. And yeah, among other things, mountains are what I miss from my homeland. So, I guess it is fair to be asked about mountains! As you can never take the mountains out of a Nepali!”

- Kaushal Yadav

Sushant K C

“This backstage snapshot encapsulates the heart of Nepal's rock scene, featuring two individuals pouring their emotions into a song. The intensity of their emotions transcends the boundaries of the stage. This picture is very close to my heart, as it preserves a memory of the same time and day I shared the stage with them. I was part of a rival band. 
The skill of the band featuring these two individuals was undeniable, yet this image serves as a testament to our triumph in a fierce band competition. It encapsulates the spirit of competition, teamwork, and the raw power of music that unites even rivals in a harmonious crescendo.”

- Sushant K C

Sameeha Vardhan

“It’s the festival of Diwali in India right now and this me 2 years ago backing away after lighting a firecracker as is mandatory on Diwali nights!  I have never felt homesick in the two years I have been at TXST but come Diwali I yearn to take that 24-hour flight home. We wear new clothes, and fill every corner of the house with lights. Everyone’s house is decorated with fairy lights of different colors. It’s that time of the year when my diet goes for a toss, and I eat homemade sweets to my heart’s content, the only time I feel religious enough to pray to the Hindu deities before running out to burst firecrackers with my friends Having run out of crackers, we return home to delicious freshly made puris, the lights remain on throughout the night and you can hear fireworks going off somewhere. I’m home.”

- Sameeha Vardhan


Yolitzi Saldivar

“This is the Iztaccihuatl Volcano, also known as the sleeping woman, which is my favourite mountain in Mexico! No matter how many times I climb it, each time it gives me different, unique, and breathtaking landscapes! It is beautiful not only because of her singular look but also because it is part of a touching Aztec love legend, the one of Princess Iztaccihuatl and her love, the warrior Popocatepetl. She lies next to her eternal love and eternal guardian, Popocatepetl, the volcano next to her. Iztaccihuatl–Popocatépetl National Park is a unique and unforgettable place that makes me smile just by remembering its beauty and the amazing moments I shared there with some of my best friends.”

- Yolitzi Saldivar

Stephanie Tarigan

“At the end of my first year in the Mathematics Education PhD program at TXST, I became really homesick. I decided to visit my friends and family in my hometown, Jakarta, Indonesia. I had a bucket list of food and coffee shops that I missed while being in San Marcos. I checked them all off this summer!”

- Stephanie Tarigan