My mother and sister decided they just couldn’t live without me. (translation: two busy Colorado moms needed one night away near a beach and I happen to be near one). With a mere 33 hours to accomplish the SaMo/SoCal experience, my skills as host would be challenged to the max. Fortunately, Google Maps and I are best friends. After plugging in some necessary sites (Marina del Rey, downtown Los Angeles, Hollywood Sign, Beverly Hills, Santa Monica, Malibu, and more), an itinerary was in place. As tour guide, I couldn’t disappoint…and what kind of tour guide would I be without proper equipment?!
With itineraries in hand, an iTunes playlist queued up, and a hidden microphone amplifier ensemble under my driver seat (which would debut unexpectedly at just the right moment: “Goodmorning everyone! How are we all doing today? Welcome to California! My name is Amber and I’ll be your tour guide this weekend…up on your left you’ll notice…”), the weekend was sure to be a hit. Yes, we crammed in as much sightseeing (and cliché tourist poses) as we could. It was a blast!
We relocated! Murphy and I made the big move to California and our family is complete again, reunited with Craig who had already relocated.
A 16 hour drive became a 20 hour excursion due to a horrible tractor-trailer collision near Mesquite, NV which closed the highway for 4 hours. Mangled, twisted metal was everywhere, a semi-truck went into the ravine, and 300 gallons of diesel fuel spilled. It was so strange to be parked on a highway stranded with tons of other strangers at 1 AM, not fully knowing what was going on. The only light came from other truckers’ illuminated red brake lights. There was no way to escape or detour for most of us because of a ravine on one side and rocky terrain on the other. So we all just waited, pacing the dotted line, staring up at the stars like campers. At 5 AM we got going again and drove past an eerie sight of large cranes rescuing the semi. I was relieved to read later that everyone made it out safely.
So, here we are! Already my skin is soaking up the new environment with hopes that sea level, humidity, and a thicker atmosphere with less winter UV preserve the unbroken cells I have left. Thanks California, for pimpin’ my DNA!
Five is my favorite number. A month ago I noticed the car was approaching 5,000 miles. An impossible thought occurred to me to plan to take a picture of the display representing all FIVES. Wrap your head around…trying to get the car to go exactly 55 miles per hour (without cruise control)…at 5:55 AM or PM…when the odometer hits 5,555 miles…at the exact moment that the trip-dometer hits 555.5 miles…with the temperature showing 55 degrees Fahrenheit! (while driving South which would be represented by an S…the letter looking most like a five…while the transmission would be in Sport mode…also reflecting an S).vvLONG STORY SHORT: I would have approx 5.5 seconds to nail this picture since there was only a 1/10 of a mile window at highway speed.
This morning was THE MORNING of the event. In the darkness, I departed with sidekick Murphy in tow, excited by the cool and damp air. Here is the result….
The temperature a few minutes before, AND AFTER, was a spiteful 55 degrees, however for this shot…it is what it is. As for the blurriness…blame the excitement, or the frustration, or the highway, or the early hour sans-Starbucks. Lastly, the cardinal direction of South suspiciously went missing from the upper left corner. Apparently the car isn’t a morning person either.
Getting kids to sit still for a family shoot is a hilarious prospect. I think the best part about this shoot is all the pictures I’m not posting…all the faces…all the emotions…what a riot! I love my nephews, especially after this experience.
“The Original Scale Miniatures”…MicroMachines! After two decades of not seeing these, I was elated to see them turn up in family storage bins.
Nephew number two: Isaac has the most contagious, enviable laugh! He is my dance partner…and who wouldn’t want to dance with him?
Nephew number one: I’m pretty sure Jaydn has taught me more in his three years than I’ve taught him. He is the reason I finally understand kids!
Happy re-fourth, on the fifth, to the one who keeps me grounded and keeps me going!
My nephews continue to be my camera therapy…Love them!