When my class learned about natural disasters in forth grade, we learned the story of Harry Truman, the old man who refused to vacate his house when Mount St. Helens erupted. He was killed by a wave of volcanic ash : "If this mountain goes, I'm going with it".
I thought of him earlier this month, when I brought in a roll of film to the processing lab. The cost doubled over night. So, I called the drugstore down the street, and during their remodel 2 weeks earlier they got rid of their 35mm machine. I looked down at my film canister and wondered ... am I Harry Truman? I guess I’ve believed that if a group of people loved something enough, it would survive. But, it hit me that this thing – the only hobby I’ve ever truly had – could really go away.
When I got home, my sister’s boyfriend brought in a dozen eggs from his family’s farm. The matte shells were covered in seamless bumps, each barely a different brown.I loaded a roll into my camera, held the window up to my eye, and focused the lens. I hesitated, wondering if what I was seeing was worth the cost to process it. Suddenly the film felt precious. Too precious. And I put the camera down.
We got through six of those eggs before I realized they’d be gone forever unless I took a basically useless photo set.
But, if it wasn’t for my camera I wouldn’t have noticed the slight textured of the shells, or their perfect symmetry. None of that existed before photography for me. There were no small miracles then, and my connection to everything was elusive. I learned how to look at life – and how to love it – when it was something that I could finally keep.
What I’m trying to say is this : it's worth it. They're all worth it. The true wonders of this world are in daily life.
(photo) on film with Nikon FM. More on my Flickr. (eggs) from Harmony Jack Organic Farm in Scio, Oregon.