Monday, May 17, 2010
I left work this afternoon with the intention of chasing a thunderstorm. I drove east out of town following the billowing clouds. I exited off the interstate and took a right on a road I'd never been on before. I followed the one lane road for several miles past fields and farms. I began to wonder if I would be able to find my way back. Finally the sun started breaking through behind me and began to highlight the clouds ahead. I pulled over at a field gate and got out and started taking photographs. I'd taken perhaps a dozen and kept reminding myself to be open to the beauty around me. That's a mantra I use when I head out to shoot. That kicks in the "noticer" part of my brain and small details become clearer to me. As I repeated the mantra and took a photograph I got a surprise. Just emerging from the cloud background was a black and white ribbon of movement. The ribbon rolled and boiled and became hundreds of American White Pelicans headed north for the summer. They formed and reformed ribbons and kettles and masses of birds. Always headed in the general direction, north. It was an awe inspiring sight and impossible to caputure in one photograph, but my, what a memory. I set out with one intent but allowed myself to be open for more and was rewarded for that. I'll continue my practice of asking to be open to the beauty around me and I will revel each time it is revealed to me.