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I can’t believe May is almost over.
I did a double take looking at my calendar last night -
What do you mean it’s Memorial Day Weekend?
How did that happen?
My daughter’s birthday is in a few days – there are birthday chores to do!
(Why is my life so chaotic? It seems like there’s never time to catch my breath.)
For the holiday weekend, I want to see PR turn the corner and start looking/feeling a whole lot better.
Worrying about his health is aging me several years per hour.
There is no worry like the worry of a parent for their child.
want need to get caught up on the forty bazillion (work/photography) things I’m hopelessly behind on.
A little time to relax and have fun would be nice too …?!
I’m now unpacked.
I’m tackling enormous piles of laundry.
There’s healthy food in the house. (I even cooked some of it!)
Mocha is caught up on her ear rubs and belly scratches. (She missed me!)
A happy Mocha – photo by PR, taken with a Holga camera.
Oh, and I took care of RC’s college graduation present too.
(All WFU students were provided with laptops, but he had to turn his in when he graduated, His graduation gift was/is a laptop of his very own.)
On our way home from the laptop purchase, I made a quick stop for a new pair of flip flops.
I can’t believe my well-worn favorites had to be tossed out.
My backyard is filled with the intoxicating smell of jasmine blooming.
(It might be my favorite scent. I associate it with summers from my childhood.)
When I step outside, I’m befriended by dozens (!!) of fearless hummingbirds.
While I’ve been busy traveling, summer has arrived.
It’s time to take a deep breath (of the jasmine-scented air) and enjoy the beginning of summer.
I can’t wait to do exactly that,
But, first I need to spend my morning with Paul Newman.
He can be quite
insistent persuasive at times.
(I bet a lot of women wish they were spending their mornings being poked and prodded by Paul Newman?)
I want to apologize to everyone I owe emails to right now.
There are a lot of you, and I will try my hardest to get caught up within the next few days.
If you left a comment on my last few posts, I have now (finally) responded in the comments section of my posts. I’m sorry it took me a little longer than normal.
Here are some random updates on
the chaos my life:
• It feels SO good to be back in California. I don’t think I realize how spoiled I am with my “California lifestyle” until I leave for awhile.
• I still haven’t had a minute to unpack. I will today. I was gone/extremely busy *every second* of yesterday.
• My youngest son, PR, seems a little better. He got a meningitis vaccine several days prior to my North Carolina trip. He was running a fever and had some more-serious-than-normal side effects. I debated cancelling my trip back east, but I couldn’t “not” be there for my other son’s (RC’s) college graduation. A doc-in-the-box assured us PR would be better “in another day”. I went back east. My daughter came and stayed with PR over last weekend. By the end of the weekend, his fever sky rocketed. He apparently developed an infection which was unrelated to the vaccine. Blah, blah, blah. I am the worst mom ever. In any case, when I got home PR looked scary horrible, had a super high fever, swollen glands, etc., etc. We *think* his fever broke late last night. Yesterday, we were able to get him to a different doctor. He’s on all sorts of medication. He has missed a ton of school. I’m not done being worried about him yet. I’m hoping I’ll see improvements now that he has drugs. I’m watching him very closely. Too many things about his illness don’t seem at all “normal” for a virus/infection/sickness.
• RC arrived home for a few weeks late last night. He begins his first adult, full-time, job/career in July, back east. (Sob!) I’m happy to have all three of my kids in California while it lasts. Pretty, RC’s girlfriend, will be coming out soon for a week long visit also.
• My recent travels sent me (my arm) into a bad flare-up. I’m blaming the luggage because I didn’t shoot *that* much.
• I saw Paul Newman yesterday. I really, really, needed him. He wasn’t very happy with my body’s current state. He gave me *that* look which means – What the hell did you do to get yourself *this* bad? In fact, I think it shocked him how inflamed/swollen/horrible I can get in such a short amount of time. At least he knows he’s needed and appreciated, right? I honestly don’t know what I would do without him. He helps me so much. If any of my OC readers ever need an amazingly superb physical therapist, please feel free to email me. I will happily refer you to Paul Newman’s practice – all the therapists who work for him are also excellent.
• Traveling is bad for me. Traveling alone = Certain Flare-Up and lots of Pain.
• I saw three hawks yesterday, in totally different locations of The OC. They made me happy to be home.
• A mountain lion was spotted in our neighborhood. They’re a fact of life here, in the canyon where I live. Personally, I prefer seeing hawks.
• Before I left for North Carolina, I purchased ginger beer. I’m ready to make Moscow Mules this summer. (They’re the perfect summer cocktail!)
• Some of you might remember PR and I did some film shooting on Mother’s Day. He took a double exposure on a Holga to “make” this ghost-like photo of me shooting with the Diana. I love how it came out.
I’ll have more for you soon!
I got back to The OC late last night.
It took me about 14 hours to get home -
The joys of cross country air travel!
I came home to a very (!!) sick kid.
The kind of sick that scares a parent to death.
(And makes me feel like the worst parent in the world because I wasn’t here when he needed me.)
(But, if I wasn’t at my other son’s graduation I would have been a horrible parent also!?)
I’ll be taking my youngest to the doctor and/or the hospital today.
He went to a doc-in-the-box while I was gone, and they did absolutely nothing.
Skyrocketing fever and chills for several days?
Meh … probably just a reaction to your meningitis vaccine … the one you had twelve days ago.
I will get him to our “real” doctor today.
I’m seeing Paul Newman today.
(I REALLY need him!)
I still need to unpack, and do all the things a person needs to do when returning from several days out of town.
Of course, the first priority is my sick kid.
I’m really worried about him …..
I have a whopping five minutes to write a blog post.
This is what I can tell you about my North Carolina trip so far:
• It takes one full (entire, loooooong!) day to travel from Orange County to North Carolina.
• A great son is willing to pick his mom up at the airport late at night.
• Hotel bars can be awesome.
• It has been completely grey and/or raining every second I’ve been here. ”Carolina Blue” must be a myth. It rained all of my last visit, also.
• As a result, I have apparently hauled massive amounts of camera gear across 3,000+ miles for no reason, whatsoever.
• I lied. There was actually one spot of blue sky for thirty seconds. I photographed it from a parking lot just to “prove” the sky is still blue behind all the grey.
• There are a lot of trees here.
• I ate a fried green tomato. Well, actually, just a very thin slice of one.
• Other food that I’ve had served to me: Biscuits (minus the gravy – I just can’t “do” gravy no matter how much “they” want me to try it), collard greens, fried french toast.
• THAT’S RIGHT FOLKS! THEY FRY FRENCH TOAST HERE!
• Who knew people did such things?
• I’m pretty sure I no longer have arteries. They closed up and left for California …. the land of sprouts and greens.
• Did I mention the hotel bar?
• Rainy days are good days for movies.
• I traveled 3,000+ miles to go to the movies. (Which are much cheaper to see in NC than in California, by the way!)
• I saw The Great Gatsby … one of my all time favorite books. (I love Fitzgerald!)
• I saw Star Trek.
• Both movies were good and I’m glad I got to see them.
• I’ve also had a lot of great time with my oldest son and his girlfriend, Pretty.
I’ll have more for you soon.
There hasn’t been much time for being online …!
I’m on my way to North Carolina today.
(Because I haven’t traveled enough lately …?)
I hate traveling cross country, but I’m sure it will be worth it once I arrive.
After all, I have a son graduating from college!
How is it possible when I’m only 24?
I’m not sure how much time I’ll have and/or when I’ll have Internet access while on this trip.
I’ll probably be sporadic with my blog posts for the next week-ish.
Yesterday, my appointment with Paul Newman was my top priority.
When he works on me regularly, I live with less pain.
(Although, I am always in MORE pain for a day or two after I see him.)
I wish I could take him with me to keep my arm on track when I travel.
Instead, whenever possible, I see him as soon as I return to “undo” whatever I’ve done to myself by traveling/shooting.
My trip to San Francisco was brief and involved more socializing than shooting.
Paul Newman was happy with the status of my arm when he saw me.
My North Carolina trip will be a little more challenging … more luggage, more gear, more shooting, more days ….
But, I’ll try to pace myself.
(I’ve actually scheduled extra days on this trip just for pacing-myself purposes.)
Yesterday was a blur of unpacking, laundry, post-travel chores, pre-travel chores, and then packing all over again.
I’ve been stressing about some aspects of this trip.
I’ve been worried about getting my luggage from my car to the check-in area.
That probably sounds odd,
But, it is really difficult when I can’t carry/lift with my right arm.
(Yes, I’m traveling alone this trip.)
I honestly don’t know how I’m going to do it.
“Little” things can be such difficult obstacles for me.
Sheesh, I’m tired.
I had a lot of fun in San Francisco the last couple days.
I realize a lot of you have never been to a photowalk, so I thought I’d share a little about it.
Most photowalks are small (4-10 participants who live locally).
Photowalks are usually organized by one or two photographers.
Participants of various skill levels meet, take photos – all the while networking and learning from each other.
Tuesday’s event, however, was huge and organized by a combination of photographers and Google.
Group Photo by Peter Adams.
The big “draws” for this walk were:
• Google was giving away one Google Glass at the event. (Worth $1,500 and impossible to buy anywhere right now.)
• Trey Ratcliff would be attending. (He’s a famous photographer who primarily shoots HDR photography.)
I flew into the Bay Area on Tuesday and did some shooting in the East Bay.
In the late afternoon, I was honored to attend a meeting Trey and Thomas had with Google.
During this meeting, they were fitted for (and taught how to use) “Glass” to wear on the photowalk.
Trey Ratcliff (left) and Thomas Hawk (right) getting “fitted” with their new Google Glass.
I had a lot of fun chatting with Google Glass developers and trying out (Thomas’s) Glass myself.
Photo taken by Thomas Hawk with my iPhone.
I knew Glass would be fun to take photos with.
I knew finished photos from the perspective of a person’s eye/s would be cool.
I didn’t know Glass would be SO SMART.
The technology in Google Glass is absolutely amazing.
The glasses can take photos, upload them, share them, etc. via voice activation.
“OK Glass, take a photo.”
You can ask it questions, get directions … Glass is intelligent.
(I get so excited by technology and the glimpses it gives us into the future.)
Kudos to Google for exceeding everyone’s expectations with Glass.
After the Google Glass “fittings,” we rushed over to the photowalk.
I really enjoyed seeing old friends and getting to meet many, many, new people too.
San Francisco Photowalk
Eventually, the photowalk came to an end.
A fairly large group of us gathered at a lounge for cocktails.
As the night wore on, a few of us moved on to another location for dinner.
It was really a lot of fun, but (as expected) it turned out to be a late night.
Also, once we got “home” we *needed* to upload and look at Glass photos.
Yes, I’m a photography nerd and so are a lot of my friends!
I also fell in love with the Hawk’s two black labs.
They’re approaching three years old.
(They loved me too because I gave them LOTS of great tummy and ear rubs.)
Here’s a photo of one of them ….
I would have packed both dogs in my bag and snuck them home if I could have ….
I’m still up in San Francisco, on a very whirlwind trip.
I’ll update you tomorrow about my adventures here.
In the meantime,
I wanted to share this storm photo from Santa Barbara.
Once in awhile I’m lucky enough to catch extra-magical light.
This was one of those moments ….
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I’m up in San Francisco today and tomorrow for a big photo event.
I hope those of you who live in the Bay Area will come join us.
(Over 1,100 people have RSVP’ed and I’m sure even more will show up. I imagine there will be news coverage, etc., etc.)
I have a hard time “packing light” when I travel.
First of all,
We women need our hair brushes and lotions and potions.
And our shoes.
I always travel with a laptop so I can upload photos and work on them in my “spare” time.
In addition, I usually have one or two cases of heavy photography crap with me.
But, this time is different.
I’ll only be in the Bay Area for two days.
I vowed to travel with one standard size shoulder photography bag (which I’ll wear crossbody so it doesn’t hurt my bum shoulder/arm) and nothing more.
The very idea is shocking to my psyche.
Stick a toothbrush, a travel toothpaste, a hairbrush, and a change of clothes into my photo bag.
Of course, I’ll also have my camera.
But, only two lenses!
(OK, three if you count the lens on it at any given moment.)
(It sort of kills me not to bring a tripod to an evening photo walk, but I’ll hunt down other stable surfaces to use instead just this one time.)
I do have some concerns.
First of all, I will automatically regret not having “all” my lenses with me.
Whatever I don’t have with me, I will “need.”
Also, what happens if I pull a lens out of my photo bag and my spare panties fall at the feet of Famous Photographers?
Most likely, they’ll start photographing them and post the photos all over the Internet.
“Suzanne’s thong makes the news!!”
Then, of course, there’s the fact I’ll look really ugly and rumpled all day Wednesday.
(Let’s be honest, I’ll look rumpled by afternoon on Tuesday.)
Looking terrible isn’t the smartest idea when you’re hanging out with zillions of photographers.
Why am I traveling so light?
Today, when I arrive in San Francisco -
I’ll be going straight from the airport to some pre-event shooting with a friend.
I don’t want to have to haul around a suitcase.
(With my arm – the less I take, the better!)
I probably won’t get “home” to my friend’s house until well after midnight – if we stop shooting at all.
Sleep is only a vague possibility over the next 36 – 48 hours.
I’ll look like death on Wednesday, but does it really matter?
After all, I’m pretty sure I’ll be too exhausted to care.
Are you a light traveler?
Or do you take tons of stuff even for short trips? (Like I usually do!)
If you travel light, what’s the bare minimum you’ve taken on a planned trip?