My 365 photo project is getting me out for a walk most days. These are not the long, fast, aerobic walks my doctor recommends for my blood pressure. Nor are they the weekend venting waddles that have sustained my walking buddy and me for more than a decade. These are slow, seeing, sensing, solitary walks.
I walk the perimeter of the one-block radius that is my preferred source for 365 photo inspirations. When I get away from the traffic sounds, I'm surprised by the bird calls and flow of the creek. Wind rattles the dry leaves. My senses wake up step by step. It's the gradual rebooting of an older computer whose operating system isn't updated or supported by the company anymore. Still, it is opening windows.
I'm probably searching too much on these walks, hoping for obvious photo ops. Letting go of desire and control would lead to fresh surprises. Today I went looking for cedar waxwings, but found a woodpecker and several robins.
Spent ten minutes with a teasing ruby-crowned kinglet in the thorns, vines, and eye-poking branches without ever getting a good photo. The tiny greenish bird hopped about too quickly although it was often within six feet of me. It could hover like a hummingbird for a second or two. "Ruby-crowned" sounds too pretentious. The bird is less than four inches in length, and the "crown" is really a little red dot to help camouflage it in a berry bush.
As soon as I got home, started downloading my photos, and took off my shoes, the soapberry tree beyond my patio fence filled with cedar waxwings. Guess it is good I didn't go looking for gorillas to photograph, or I might have found a kitchen full of primates on my return.
© 2010 Nancy L. Ruder