No More 3x5s

Thursday, June 23, 2011
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. 

12 comments:

  1. Sometimes, I feel like my camera helps me cheat. I should be forced to capture the words to create the images I see. You did a wonderful job of painting your pictures in this post.

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  3. I have finally gotten to the point where I don't have my camera and I see something incredible, I'm able to just enjoy it and forget about my camera- it took me awhile to get there though, especially as a blogger!

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  4. I like to split camera responsibilities with my husband so that we both have opportunities to sit back and enjoy. But sometimes, when the camera is forgotten--- well, that is just fine. We both get to sit back and watch.

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  5. very nice! I love photography, but I also feel wary of taking photos all the time. When I forget the camera it is very comforting to remind myself that I'm a poet and things can be "kept" in more than one way.

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  6. i'm with you. i never remember my camera. i always have a little one on me, but the flash is horrible, so i never break it out! I want to turn a messenger bag into a camera bag, though, so i will be more apt to bring the SLR.

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  7. Lovely! And so true. How easy it is for me to just let the camera do the looking.

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  8. I'm weird, but I almost prefer descriptions to pictures. When words create an image, the image seems more lasting for some reason. And you did an amazing job of capturing your "pictures" here in words. The cheepers? Adorable!! The berries? Gorgeous...especially when you held them close to your face. I could picture that perfectly...and that's almost a bigger gift that a camera. :)

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  9. It's funny you posted this, sometimes I feel like I'm so obsessed with getting a good picture that I overlook the beauty of what I'm seeing with my own two eyes. My husband always tells me to put the camera away and just enjoy it (but, I never do)

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  10. The camera does spoil us, but I find I get more hits on posts with the photos. Many times that is what the people are searching for. I try to always remember to take the camera but sometimes don't feel like lugging it around.

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  11. I am NOTORIOUS for never having a camera and therefore, never having pictures of things we do. I have decided that I just have to be okay with it. Sometimes it's really cool, though, because it's like my special little secret or something. At least that's what I tell myself so that I don't feel bad about forgetting it, haha.

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  12. Wow Ada! You paint beautiful imagery, and sounds, smells and feelings too. This is a gorgeous, thoughtful post.

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