Didn't have a camera by my side this time/Hoping I would see the world through both my eyes/Maybe I will tell you all about it when I'm in the mood to lose my way with words -- John Mayer
I've been forgetting my camera a lot lately. For the last week or so, the same scenario has been playing itself out over and over again.
We get halfway to wherever we're headed.
Andy: Did you bring the camera?
Ada: No . . ..
I don't really have an excuse for forgetting it. It has a snazzy new Duluth pack case, which makes it easy to throw the camera in the boat, truck, or over my shoulder. But maybe the past week straight of rain and drizzle has left me feeling visually uninspired. No matter what happens lately, I can't seem to remember my camera until it's too late to turn around and go fetch it.
And when I don't have your camera with, sometimes it feels like I'm missing things. Without a camera to capture the views we found when we clamored to lake's highest point at sunset, how can I share what it felt like to pull myself up the charred, shattered granite cliff face to find the lake and all its islands spilling out before me under a rose color sky. Does it even make sense if I tell about the stark cliff we found on yesterday's hike with such straight, sharp edges it looked like we'd stumbled into some Aztec or Inca realm?
Without the pictures to prove I saw it, it gets harder to share my experiences and make them immediate and real. But that doesn't mean I'm missing anything. I'm still seeing it. By not having my camera with, I'm forced to remember more than just the image.
I have to remember the sweet little cheeps coming from the two grouse nests we've stumbled upon in the past few days, as well as the sight of agitated Mama Grouse, neck all puffed out, trying to defend her little cheepers (baby grouse). I can tell you about the rain, but what I really remember is the cold feeling of water instantly gushing into my old, tired tennis shoes as I soon as I set foot on the overgrown path on yesterday's hike and the squelching feeling of water squishing between my toes with each step I took. I could tell you the midseason wildflowers are in full swing, or I could tell you about gathering bright red wintergreen berries in my palm while batting off buzzing mosquitoes divebombing my head, taking a moment to hold the berries close to my face so I could breath in their minty smell.
I'm seeing plenty these days. And for the time being, I'm trying to see it with both my eyes.