WHEN WORLDS COLLIDE
I once went into a Starbucks and approached the counter desperate for a cup of coffee. Simple right. Starbucks. Coffee. I walked up to the counter and asked for “a cup of coffee”. The barista behind the counter proceeded to invite me to try a special kind of coffee in a special size, made with a special blend of coffee beans enhanced with a special flavor.
She continued to hijack my request for a cup of coffee with invitations to pastries and various items for sale around the store. I looked at her with an exhausted shocked expression and said, “can I please have a cup of coffee”. I think about it all the time. We either come at someone or they at us, where we are coming from collides with where they are coming from.
The membrane of our world pierces the membrane of their world and all of a sudden we’re both in it together. Will they give me the cup of coffee I want? Will I buy the everything special they are selling? Why can’t everyone I come in contact with just do as I ask? And most of all, why can’t I surrender too and just do as others ask of me?
Desperate for photos last weekend, I leapt out into the world with my camera, knowing there was nothing to shoot… knowing there is always something to shoot. I parked the Camaro near a ridiculous festival in a hot section of town on a dirty street. I defied my nonsense negative and just grabbed the camera and started to walk.
A human on a bicycle came at me on the sidewalk. I just started shooting. Was I in their way or were they in mine? Did I just enter their world or did they just enter mine? I couldn’t even tell if they were a he or a she… leaning a bit toward the she. I snapped away and it all became mine.
Now I surrender it all to you… and it becomes yours.
At the weird festival… a small amount of people milled about doing festival things… as if it was a big festival, but it was not. Fifteen pop up booths, a stage with a singer on it, a cop by a tree and people walking, sweating and being the festival goers. A single solitary truck was parked, selling Budweiser. Behind it a guy squatted on the tailgate having a smoke.
Ten steps in, ten steps over and eight steps back, and I was almost out of the festival. I man and his dog hid behind a telephone pole hoping no one would see them… hoping no one would enter their world. He quietly played the harmonica, inhaling some notes, exhaling others. No one heard, so no one could tell him if it was good or bad.
Dissatisfied with the day’s activities and shots, I found my way to the most famous haunted hotel in Florida, the Don Cesar. It was so strange to see the timeless monument active in our modern-day and age. As you know, it’s hard to know a ghost when you meet one, so I’m sure I passed a few on the stairs or by the pool and didn’t even know it.
Still hungering for beauty and something to shoot, I drove up the road all the way to Clearwater Beach where I found the Sand Pearl.
This hotel was so magnificent, I had to force myself to plan a vacation just so I could spend a couple of days drinking Pina Coladas on the beach and watching the sun set.
The next day I went down to Tampa to look for shots. I thought it had gotten cooler and I could hike the streets, but I was wrong. Hot hot hot was downtown Tampa on this day and after walking in a few directions and then back again, I decided to trudge my sweaty self back to the car and head home.
On the way back, I found myself watching water shoot out of the side-walk and thought I’d catch a few squirts with my camera. I shot the pearly ribbons of wet, as best I could and rushed home to edit my photos. I cranked through the festival that wasn’t a festival, the haunted hotel without ghosts and the beach palace where I plan to vacation in about a month.
When I came to the shots in the fountain I noticed there were shadows running through the tall crops of water that were not there when I shot the photos. I smiled to myself thinking about how we all collide with each other daily and sometimes there is conflict from the interruption and other times a visitor from another place is a surprise and a delight.