Sunday, November 20, 2016

Focus on the People~



I recently took a road trip to Conowingo Dam in Maryland to photograph the eagles that soar in to scoop up the fish that pass through the gates when the water is released.





The experience was wonderful--although it made me realize what a novice I am at bird photography. I definitely would love to go back and try again with the experience gained from the mistakes I made, including (inadvertently) setting my camera to a “back button” focus setting that I don’t use...and thus not being able to focus well... Grrr. (Thanks, Hunt’s Camera in Hanover, for figuring out my mistake within five minutes...once I was home.)
 
Such is life, right? Taking pix is like fishing: you don’t always make the catch.

EAGLES don’t always make the catch!

 The One That Got Away~
 
But here’s the thing...this trip was awesome! And not just because of the photo opportunities (and despite my disappointment in the photo results), but because of the PEOPLE my photo friend Pat and I met.
 


Life is all about the people. That’s what we should keep our focus on.


***




I didn't ask his name, but this man spent a lot of time trying to help with the focus on my camera. He even went to find another guy he thought could help.












This is Stevie, who got an alcohol wipe to wipe off the connections between my camera and lens. Didn't make a difference, but still.











 And thank you to the guy who took our picture to save us from the typical "selfie" look.

Sunday, September 11, 2016

Nine Eleven, revisited~






Those of us who lived through the 9/11 attacks...

the World Trade Center,
the Pentagon,
the plane crash in a Pennsylvania field, a sacrificial effort by citizens aboard to avoid the White House

...each have our own story to tell.

I was teaching a captive audience of fifth graders at Hanover Middle School when my classroom door cracked open and a colleague beckoned me to the hall.  In a whisper, she told me a plane had hit the World Trade Center Tower, then cautioned me not to tell the kids.

I walked back into the classroom, dazed, scared, confused, making an attempt to cover the churning emotions, the fear.

Knowing so little...

the first tower had not yet collapsed,
the second plane had not struck,


...it was easy to imagine that this was an all out attack on the country, the beginning of a war on our continent.


In hindsight, it was.

I was with a group of teachers huddled in the library office, staring the dusty TV on its rolling cart, watching the scene unfold. We stood in horrified silence, hands to our mouths, watching the slow motion crumpling of the tower. The only words spoken were, “Oh my God!” Over and over...

 “Oh, my God!”

I was more than 200 miles from the scene. A four-hour drive, at least.  But my heart leapt that distance and I was right there.

We were ALL right there.


Despite the 15 intervening years, I can return to that day instantly; my mind has not forgotten the horror I watched from afar.  I shared the terror and the grief, although it was in no way the same as those who were there on the island...

covered in dust as they tried to flee with no way out but by sea,
choosing to leap to death, rather than burn,
hearing sirens, crashing buildings, screaming people,
seeing bloodied friends...and maybe worse, not seeing someone,

...or for those who lost a loved one. For them, I‘m sure the 15 years dissolve in an instant and memory is still so immediate that it sears their hearts daily.

They can never forget.
Nor can we.
How could we?





Other posts... Memorials