Holly and I took a little vacation last week.
We had our getaway all planed out, but we still hadn’t settled on a destination, even though my mother-in-law had arrived and it was the morning we were supposed to leave. I wasn’t looking forward to the long drive but had been lobbying half-heartedly for somewhere in Oregon, perhaps Ashland or somewhere along the coast. Holly suggested a few of our past haunts: Portland, or north to British Columbia. We even considered a little college town just before the Canadian boarder.
With the clock ticking, we finally settled on Seattle, which sounds like desperation but ended up feeling like a whole new town without the kids. We saw a show at the Paramount (Phantom of the Opera), did a reading at Eliott Bay Book Company and saw an exhibit at a local art school. Plus lots of good food and long walks.
I remember my mom and dad taking a trip on their own when I was about 7 or 8. When they got back, I asked Mom if she missed us. I fully expected her to tell me how badly she missed me and all my siblings, but instead she just looked at me for what seemed like a very long time.
Finally she said, “Yeah. I missed you.” I knew there was something she wasn’t telling me, but I couldn’t imagine her enjoying herself on her own. I completely understand that long silence now.
Here is Holly on the Harbor steps. I love those posts on the left, which somehow make the picture.
Me hanging out at the Lusty Lady. Rome may be burning, but the Lady still has a sense of humor.
When we go back east to visit my folks, we like to show the kids a different city. Last week it was Philadelphia.
After I finished taking the shot above, I looked up and saw a young man chatting with Holly and the kids. When I got closer, I realized he was asking for money.
I rarely give money on the street, but I didn’t want to cut him off, so I waited for him to finish his story. It was a pitiful story and he ended it with a plea for a few dollars. Before I could decline, Aaron chirped, “Sure!” and started rummaging through all his pockets. That’s what I love so much about Aaron: empathetic to a fault.
Both Holly and I just looked at him. The panhandler looked at him. There was a pregnant pause. Aaron looked up at us looking at him and said, “Isn’t anyone else going to give this guy some money?”
I have no idea.
But thank God for people like Philip Greenspun, who Wikipedia calls an “American computer scientist, educator, and early internet entrepreneur.” Philip is all of that, but I bring him to your attention because he is also Editor in Chief at Photo.net, where you can learn an awful lot about photography for free.
Philip caters to the advanced crowd, but he has just added two new videos that cover the basics of digital photography very well. I will refer you to his blog post, which in turn points to both videos. Although I’ve had my Canon Digital Rebel for almost two years now, I learned more watching the XTi video than I have gleaned from any other single source.
That sounds a little embarrassing, but it’s true.