My Little Plastic Box of Memories

I honestly can’t remember how I got to where I am now, certainly not every step along the way.  I do remember that I used to be very interested in exploring new places without any intentions or goals at all, other than to get lost among new sights and sounds.  In my youthful naivety I always figured that locking away these experiences in my head would be the best way to preserve them, to learn from them, and to be enriched by them.  I figured they were mine, and I should retain them someplace where absolutely no one could see.  As it turns out, my memory is complete shit.  The years I spent awash in booze, no matter how beautiful were my surroundings at the time, are lost to soggy grey matter, and more mercilessly, to time.  So rather than pissing away what were definitely beautiful vistas and experiences, I bought myself a camera. 

During that period of my life I was not interested in sharing these experiences, not just yet.  A camera seemed more comfortable than a companion.  I was young, and a horrible traveling partner to boot.  Then something remarkable happened- rather than using my camera to preserve moments in time so I could later remind myself of them, it became my reason to wander, to get lost.  I waded through swamps to snap photos of alligators.  I walked for days through the desert to get pictures of vast stretches of nothing, and of the unexpected violence of a thunderstorm from the vantage point of someone without any shelter.  I put miles upon miles on my soles walking around New Orleans, Washington, Atlanta, San Antonio, Monterey, Marrakech, Fez, Granada, Malaga…

I am not certain anymore which is the stronger motivation; is it to wander and see new things, or is it to find new things to capture with my camera? Or is it something altogether different, an unfathomably persistent call to which I was always a slave, and I just now answer more logically and justifiably with a camera?  I guess it doesn’t much matter.  At any rate, I would like to share some stories with you, some real and others fiction, along with a handful of pictures.  Please feel free to share links to your own stories and photos.  I would love to see what you’ve seen, and vicariously go to where you’ve gone… so long as you don’t mind sharing.


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