I'm getting antsy. There; I said it. Three days ago my friend Webb Chiles cast off from Hilton Head and started south toward Cuba, which he will slide past and at the end of two or maybe three weeks he will tie up in Panama ready to transit the canal. I am following his Yellow Brick satellite transmitter so I can track his progress across the water. He is gone and I am here. I confess I felt a twinge of envy. Not so much for his experience, cold January winds and a very small uncomfortable boat that he thoroughly enjoys, but I felt envy for the mere fact of his being on the move, as they say. He is traveling, closing in on the end of his sixth circumnavigation.
I went to Miami this week with my wife and left Rusty with friends. We met other friends in the city, ate delicious food and talked a great deal. The doctor told me the numbness in my leg will persist for months possibly, impairing my balance as nerves are slow to grow. Pondering that news I wonder how long it will be, more importantly before I get to take a road trip. Three hours as a passenger to Miami is plenty at the moment. Before the accident we would happily drive, with Rusty in the back all the way to Georgia in a day...those days will return but not tomorrow.
So, with horizons limited by circumstance I derive pleasure from my surroundings. I have taken to looking closely at places close to home. If you come across me you will find me frequently pondering a tree, or a patch of sky, or a building I may have passed a thousand times. It turns out these limitations on my physical movements are having a strangely beneficial effect on my depth perception! I find myself perforce returning to the same places within a narrow radius of home and finding new ways to look at the same spaces. Furthermore my physical inability to lie down or crawl or climb or lean or twist means the way I see things through the camera is more static than ever. The challenges mount up!
Thus it was one evening I loaded wife and dog and went to find a different sunset location and I settled on a preferred walk for my dog - Little Hamaca Park, across the Salt Ponds from the airport. I have seen the parked private aircraft before during the day but by night there was a different symmetry.
The best part was noticing a contrail across the sky and discovering when I went home that it was all over Facebook after it created a cross in the sky. I photographed it because I liked the shading and the colors in the trail as seen below.
A more conventional sunset is to be found at Mallory Square where everyone gathers. We were alone at Little Hamaca but when I was at Mallory I was far from alone! And yet the picture I took of the lines in the sky obviously was visible all over the place and got lots of attention.
I pride myself on recording my Key West as I see it but sometimes, I prefer to deploy some of the many filters and shades available to me. At night black and white (more properly "monochrome") yields lovely stark contrasts which work well. Black and white also yields crisper pictures than color. Almost any street scene ends up brilliant in black and white, even the parking lot at the police station! Picture me standing there at two in the morning, I've just come out of the elevator from dispatch upstairs and with iPhone in hand I stop, catch my breath and take this shot looking toward Garrison Bight:
And then Key West slaps you in the face with something bright and colorful and right there. Whoever was riding this slipped up alongside my car without me noticing. We came back to the car and there was the picture- no travel needed!