Through the casa owner, I was able to arrange a taxi to drive me from Trinidad in the direction of the coast, and to a town called La Boca, some five miles away. I had spent some time explaining to the driver and her husband who soon joined us that I was looking for “a place where I might find groups of people near the water” and they both concurred that La Boca was the only nearest destination. My goal is to photograph at least one excellent scene for my Human Pulse series.
As soon as we entered the sleepy town, my heart jumped a bit when I saw a series of reefs by beaches, and some people all around or in the water. I felt an urgent need to quickly deposit my bags in the new lodgings the taxi driver had found and rush out with my camera the two blocks to the beach, which I did (so quickly that I forgot to make a mental note of how to get back to the casa and later got lost for a while). I installed my widest-angle lens on my mirrorless Sony 7A-C camera and got to work:
10:00 𝑎.𝑚. – 𝐶𝑙𝑜𝑠𝑒 𝑔𝑟𝑜𝑢𝑝 𝑜𝑓 𝑟𝑜𝑐𝑘𝑠 𝑤𝑖𝑡ℎ 𝑎𝑏𝑜𝑢𝑡 𝑒𝑖𝑔ℎ𝑡 𝑏𝑎𝑡ℎ𝑒𝑟𝑠, 𝑖𝑛𝑐𝑙𝑢𝑑𝑖𝑛𝑔 𝑡𝑤𝑜 𝑏𝑜𝑦𝑠; ℎ𝑎𝑠 𝑝𝑜𝑡𝑒𝑛𝑡𝑖𝑎𝑙 𝑏𝑢𝑡 𝑛𝑒𝑒𝑑𝑠 𝑚𝑜𝑟𝑒 𝑝𝑒𝑜𝑝𝑙𝑒. 𝐸𝑥𝑐𝑒𝑙𝑙𝑒𝑛𝑡 𝑙𝑖𝑔ℎ𝑡𝑖𝑛𝑔, 𝑤𝑖𝑡ℎ 𝑠𝑢𝑛𝑙𝑖𝑔ℎ𝑡 ℎ𝑖𝑡𝑡𝑖𝑛𝑔 𝑐𝑒𝑛𝑡𝑟𝑎𝑙 𝑠𝑐𝑒𝑛𝑒. 𝑁𝑜 𝑐𝑙𝑜𝑢𝑑𝑠 𝑖𝑛 𝑠𝑘𝑦.
10:20 𝑎.𝑚. – 𝐴 𝑤𝑜𝑚𝑎𝑛 𝑤𝑖𝑡ℎ ℎ𝑒𝑟 𝑑𝑎𝑢𝑔ℎ𝑡𝑒𝑟 𝑗𝑜𝑖𝑛𝑠, 𝑡ℎ𝑖𝑛𝑔𝑠 𝑎𝑟𝑒 𝑙𝑜𝑜𝑘𝑖𝑛𝑔 𝑚𝑜𝑟𝑒 𝑖𝑛𝑡𝑒𝑟𝑒𝑠𝑡𝑖𝑛𝑔. 𝐼 𝑡𝑎𝑘𝑒 𝑎 𝑏𝑟𝑒𝑎𝑘 𝑡𝑜 𝑔𝑒𝑡 𝑎𝑛 𝑜𝑟𝑎𝑛𝑔𝑒 𝑠𝑜𝑑𝑎 𝑎𝑡 𝑛𝑒𝑎𝑟𝑏𝑦 𝑘𝑖𝑜𝑠𝑘.
10:30 𝑎.𝑚. – 𝐼 𝑚𝑜𝑣𝑒 𝑡𝑜 𝑎𝑛𝑜𝑡ℎ𝑒𝑟 𝑔𝑟𝑜𝑢𝑝 𝑜𝑓 𝑟𝑜𝑐𝑘𝑠 𝑡𝑜 𝑎𝑠𝑠𝑒𝑠𝑠 𝑝𝑜𝑡𝑒𝑛𝑡𝑖𝑎𝑙 𝑏𝑢𝑡 𝑓𝑖𝑛𝑑 𝑙𝑒𝑠𝑠. 𝐼 𝑠𝑐𝑜𝑙𝑑 𝑎 𝑦𝑜𝑢𝑛𝑔 𝑐𝑜𝑢𝑝𝑙𝑒 𝑤ℎ𝑜 𝑙𝑒𝑎𝑣𝑒 𝑡𝑟𝑎𝑠ℎ 𝑖𝑛 𝑡ℎ𝑒 𝑎𝑟𝑒𝑎 𝑎𝑠 𝑡ℎ𝑒𝑦 𝑑𝑒𝑝𝑎𝑟𝑡, 𝑏𝑢𝑡 𝑡ℎ𝑒 𝑚𝑎𝑛 𝑝𝑜𝑖𝑛𝑡𝑠 𝑡𝑜 𝑜𝑡ℎ𝑒𝑟 𝑡𝑟𝑎𝑠ℎ 𝑙𝑒𝑓𝑡 𝑏𝑒ℎ𝑖𝑛𝑑 𝑎𝑠 ℎ𝑖𝑠 𝑑𝑒𝑓𝑒𝑛𝑠𝑒. 𝐼 𝑠𝑎𝑦 𝑡ℎ𝑎𝑡’𝑠 “𝑀𝑎𝑙 𝑒𝑑𝑢𝑐𝑎𝑑𝑜” (𝑖𝑔𝑛𝑜𝑟𝑎𝑛𝑡) 𝑎𝑛𝑑 𝑡ℎ𝑒𝑦 𝑙𝑒𝑎𝑣𝑒 𝑜𝑛 𝑡ℎ𝑒𝑖𝑟 𝑚𝑜𝑡𝑜𝑟𝑐𝑦𝑐𝑙𝑒. 𝑇𝑎𝑘𝑒 𝑎 𝑓𝑒𝑤 𝑚𝑜𝑟𝑒 𝑝ℎ𝑜𝑡𝑜𝑠 𝑜𝑓 𝑡ℎ𝑒 𝑠𝑐𝑒𝑛𝑒.
11:05 𝑎.𝑚. – 𝑅𝑒𝑡𝑢𝑟𝑛 𝑡𝑜 𝑓𝑖𝑟𝑠𝑡 𝑎𝑟𝑒𝑎 𝑎𝑛𝑑 𝑓𝑖𝑛𝑑 𝑚𝑜𝑟𝑒 𝑝𝑒𝑜𝑝𝑙𝑒; 𝑡ℎ𝑖𝑛𝑔𝑠 𝑎𝑟𝑒 𝑙𝑜𝑜𝑘𝑖𝑛𝑔 𝑔𝑟𝑒𝑎𝑡, 𝑠𝑢𝑛 𝑖𝑠 𝑔𝑒𝑡𝑡𝑖𝑛𝑔 ℎ𝑖𝑔ℎ𝑒𝑟 𝑎𝑛𝑑 𝑝𝑢𝑓𝑓𝑦 𝑐𝑙𝑜𝑢𝑑𝑠 𝑒𝑛𝑡𝑒𝑟 𝑡ℎ𝑒 𝑠𝑐𝑒𝑛𝑒. 𝑀𝑦 𝑏𝑎𝑐𝑘 𝑎𝑛𝑑 𝑠ℎ𝑜𝑢𝑙𝑑𝑒𝑟𝑠 𝑎𝑟𝑒 𝑔𝑒𝑡𝑡𝑖𝑛𝑔 𝑠𝑡𝑖𝑓𝑓 𝑓𝑟𝑜𝑚 𝑠𝑡𝑎𝑛𝑑𝑖𝑛𝑔 𝑎𝑛𝑑 ℎ𝑜𝑙𝑑𝑖𝑛𝑔 𝑚𝑦 𝑒𝑞𝑢𝑖𝑝𝑚𝑒𝑛𝑡 𝑏𝑎𝑔𝑠. 𝑆𝑜𝑚𝑒 𝑝𝑒𝑜𝑝𝑙𝑒 𝑒𝑦𝑒 𝑚𝑒 𝑠𝑢𝑠𝑝𝑖𝑐𝑖𝑜𝑢𝑠𝑙𝑦, 𝑒𝑠𝑝𝑒𝑐𝑖𝑎𝑙𝑙𝑦 𝑤ℎ𝑒𝑛 𝐼 𝑝𝑢𝑙𝑙 𝑜𝑢𝑡 𝑚𝑦 𝑙𝑎𝑟𝑔𝑒 𝑁𝑖𝑘𝑜𝑛 𝑐𝑎𝑚𝑒𝑟𝑎 𝑎𝑛𝑑 𝑡𝑒𝑙𝑒𝑝ℎ𝑜𝑡𝑜, 𝑏𝑢𝑡 𝑚𝑜𝑠𝑡 𝑔𝑜 𝑎𝑏𝑜𝑢𝑡 𝑡ℎ𝑒𝑖𝑟 𝑑𝑖𝑣𝑒𝑟𝑠𝑖𝑜𝑛𝑠.
11:30 𝑎.𝑚. – 𝐼 𝑡𝑎𝑘𝑒 𝑎 𝑏𝑟𝑒𝑎𝑘 𝑡𝑜 𝑒𝑎𝑡 𝑠𝑜𝑚𝑒 𝐹𝑟𝑒𝑛𝑐ℎ 𝑓𝑟𝑖𝑒𝑠 𝐼 𝑏𝑜𝑢𝑔ℎ𝑡 𝑎𝑡 𝑎𝑛𝑜𝑡ℎ𝑒𝑟 𝑛𝑒𝑎𝑟𝑏𝑦 𝑘𝑖𝑜𝑠𝑘. 𝑇𝑟𝑦 𝑡𝑜 𝑠𝑡𝑎𝑦 𝑖𝑛 𝑡ℎ𝑒 𝑠ℎ𝑎𝑑𝑒 𝑎𝑠 𝑖𝑡’𝑠 𝑔𝑒𝑡𝑡𝑖𝑛𝑔 𝑣𝑒𝑟𝑦 ℎ𝑜𝑡 𝑎𝑛𝑑 𝐼’𝑚 𝑠𝑤𝑒𝑎𝑡𝑖𝑛𝑔 𝑎 𝑙𝑜𝑡.
11:40 𝑎.𝑚. – S𝑡𝑎𝑟𝑡 𝑚𝑎𝑘𝑖𝑛𝑔 𝑠𝑜𝑚𝑒 𝑠ℎ𝑜𝑟𝑡 𝑣𝑖𝑑𝑒𝑜 𝑐𝑙𝑖𝑝𝑠 𝑜𝑓 𝑑𝑖𝑠𝑡𝑎𝑛𝑡 𝑏𝑎𝑡ℎ𝑒𝑟𝑠, 𝑢𝑠𝑖𝑛𝑔 200 𝑚𝑚 𝑡𝑒𝑙𝑒𝑝ℎ𝑜𝑡𝑜 𝑡𝑜 𝑐𝑜𝑙𝑙𝑎𝑝𝑠𝑒 𝑡ℎ𝑒 𝑠𝑝𝑎𝑐𝑒. Also make some “postcard” images destined for full color applications
12:05 𝑎.𝑚. – 𝑅𝑒𝑡𝑢𝑟𝑛 𝑡𝑜 𝑚𝑦 𝑛𝑒𝑤 𝑐𝑎𝑠𝑎 𝑡𝑜 𝑢𝑛𝑝𝑎𝑐𝑘 𝑎𝑛𝑑 𝑠ℎ𝑜𝑤𝑒𝑟. 𝐸𝑥𝑎𝑚𝑖𝑛𝑒 𝑡ℎ𝑒 𝑚𝑜𝑟𝑛𝑖𝑛𝑔’𝑠 𝑝ℎ𝑜𝑡𝑜𝑠 𝑜𝑛 𝑚𝑦 𝑙𝑎𝑝𝑡𝑜𝑝 𝑎𝑛𝑑 𝑓𝑖𝑛𝑑 𝑠𝑜𝑚𝑒 𝑑𝑒𝑐𝑒𝑛𝑡 𝑠ℎ𝑜𝑡𝑠, 𝑟𝑒𝑎𝑙𝑖𝑧𝑒 𝐼 𝑤𝑖𝑙𝑙 ℎ𝑎𝑣𝑒 𝑡𝑜 𝑚𝑎𝑘𝑒 𝑠𝑜𝑚𝑒 ℎ𝑎𝑟𝑑 𝑐ℎ𝑜𝑖𝑐𝑒𝑠 𝑏𝑒𝑡𝑤𝑒𝑒𝑛 𝑡ℎ𝑒 𝑐𝑎𝑛𝑑𝑖𝑑𝑎𝑡𝑒𝑠.
3:20 𝑝.𝑚. – 𝑅𝑒𝑡𝑢𝑟𝑛 𝑡𝑜 𝑡ℎ𝑒 𝑝𝑟𝑖𝑜𝑟 𝑏𝑒𝑎𝑐ℎ 𝑎𝑟𝑒𝑎 𝑎𝑛𝑑 𝑎𝑚 𝑠𝑢𝑟𝑝𝑟𝑖𝑠𝑒𝑑 𝑡𝑜 𝑠𝑒𝑒 𝑚𝑎𝑛𝑦 𝑑𝑜𝑧𝑒𝑛𝑠 𝑚𝑜𝑟𝑒 𝑝𝑒𝑜𝑝𝑙𝑒 𝑎𝑛𝑑 𝑐ℎ𝑖𝑙𝑑𝑟𝑒𝑛; 𝑓𝑖𝑛𝑑 𝑎 𝑐𝑜𝑚𝑝𝑙𝑒𝑡𝑒𝑙𝑦 𝑛𝑒𝑤 𝑎𝑛𝑔𝑙𝑒 𝑏𝑦 𝑠𝑜𝑚𝑒 𝑠𝑡𝑜𝑛𝑒 𝑠𝑡𝑎𝑖𝑟𝑠 𝐼 ℎ𝑎𝑑 𝑚𝑖𝑠𝑠𝑒𝑑 𝑒𝑎𝑟𝑙𝑖𝑒𝑟. 𝑁𝑜𝑤 𝑡ℎ𝑖𝑛𝑔𝑠 𝑎𝑟𝑒 𝑟𝑒𝑎𝑙𝑙𝑦 𝑙𝑜𝑜𝑘𝑖𝑛𝑔 𝑔𝑟𝑒𝑎𝑡!
4:30 𝑝.𝑚. – 𝐴𝑛𝑜𝑡ℎ𝑒𝑟 𝑠𝑝𝑜𝑡 𝑜𝑛 𝑡ℎ𝑒 𝑏𝑒𝑎𝑐ℎ 𝑦𝑖𝑒𝑙𝑑𝑠 𝑠𝑜𝑚𝑒 𝑖𝑛𝑡𝑒𝑟𝑒𝑠𝑡𝑖𝑛𝑔 𝑔𝑟𝑜𝑢𝑝𝑠 𝑎𝑛𝑑 𝑠𝑦𝑛𝑒𝑟𝑔𝑖𝑒𝑠. M𝑦 𝑏𝑎𝑐𝑘 𝑚𝑢𝑠𝑐𝑙𝑒𝑠 𝑠𝑡𝑎𝑟𝑡 𝑡𝑜 𝑠𝑝𝑎𝑠𝑚 𝑓𝑟𝑜𝑚 𝑚𝑦 𝑠𝑡𝑎𝑛𝑑𝑖𝑛𝑔 𝑠𝑡𝑖𝑙𝑙 𝑤𝑖𝑡ℎ 𝑎𝑙𝑙 𝑡ℎ𝑒 𝑤𝑒𝑖𝑔ℎ𝑡; 𝑏𝑢𝑡 𝐼 𝑛𝑒𝑒𝑑 𝑡𝑜 𝑠𝑡𝑎𝑦 𝑜𝑛 𝑚𝑦 𝑓𝑒𝑒𝑡.
4:40 𝑝.𝑚. – 𝑂𝑝𝑡𝑖𝑚𝑢𝑚 𝑐𝑜𝑚𝑏𝑖𝑛𝑎𝑡𝑖𝑜𝑛 𝑜𝑓 𝑔𝑙𝑎𝑛𝑐𝑖𝑛𝑔 𝑠𝑢𝑛𝑙𝑖𝑔ℎ𝑡 𝑎𝑛𝑑 𝑔𝑟𝑜𝑢𝑝 𝑎𝑐𝑡𝑖𝑜𝑛; 𝑎𝑚 𝑣𝑒𝑟𝑦 𝑝𝑙𝑒𝑎𝑠𝑒𝑑! [Following is the final image file, with selenium toning.]
5:20 𝑝.𝑚. – 𝐼 ℎ𝑒𝑎𝑑 𝑏𝑎𝑐𝑘 𝑡𝑜 𝑡ℎ𝑒 𝑐𝑎𝑠𝑎 𝑏𝑢𝑡 𝑛𝑜𝑡𝑖𝑐𝑒 𝑡ℎ𝑒 𝑠𝑢𝑛 𝑖𝑠 𝑠𝑒𝑡𝑡𝑖𝑛𝑔 𝑖𝑛 𝑎 𝑏𝑒𝑎𝑢𝑡𝑖𝑓𝑢𝑙 𝑤𝑎𝑦 𝑠𝑜 𝐼 𝑤𝑎𝑙𝑘 𝑜𝑛 𝑎ℎ𝑒𝑎𝑑 𝑡𝑜 𝑝𝑜𝑠𝑖𝑡𝑖𝑜𝑛 𝑚𝑦𝑠𝑒𝑙𝑓 𝑓𝑜𝑟 𝑠𝑜𝑚𝑒 “𝑝𝑜𝑠𝑡𝑐𝑎𝑟𝑑 𝑠𝑢𝑛𝑠𝑒𝑡” 𝑠ℎ𝑜𝑡𝑠 [see below gallery; click on first image to see full screen.]
6:00 𝑝.𝑚. – 𝐼 𝑟𝑒𝑡𝑢𝑟𝑛 𝑡𝑜 𝑐𝑎𝑠𝑎, 𝑒𝑥ℎ𝑎𝑢𝑠𝑡𝑒𝑑 𝑏𝑢𝑡 𝑒𝑥𝑐𝑖𝑡𝑒𝑑 𝑡𝑜 𝑠𝑒𝑒 𝑟𝑒𝑠𝑢𝑙𝑡𝑠 𝑓𝑟𝑜𝑚 𝑡ℎ𝑒 𝑑𝑎𝑦’𝑠 𝑝𝑟𝑒𝑐𝑖𝑜𝑢𝑠 ℎ𝑎𝑢𝑙 𝑜𝑓 𝑚𝑜𝑟𝑒 𝑡ℎ𝑎𝑛 100 𝑠ℎ𝑜𝑡𝑠. 𝑅𝑒ℎ𝑒𝑎𝑡 𝑎𝑛𝑑 𝑒𝑎𝑡 𝑠𝑜𝑚𝑒 𝑜𝑓 𝑚𝑦 𝑏𝑒𝑎𝑛𝑠 𝑎𝑛𝑑 𝑟𝑖𝑐𝑒 𝑙𝑒𝑓𝑡 𝑜𝑣𝑒𝑟 𝑓𝑟𝑜𝑚 𝑦𝑒𝑠𝑡𝑒𝑟𝑑𝑎𝑦’𝑠 𝑑𝑖𝑛𝑛𝑒𝑟 𝑤ℎ𝑖𝑙𝑒 𝐼 𝑒𝑥𝑎𝑚𝑖𝑛𝑒, 𝑠𝑜𝑟𝑡, 𝑎𝑛𝑑 𝑒𝑑𝑖𝑡 𝑡ℎ𝑒 𝑑𝑎𝑦’𝑠 𝑝ℎ𝑜𝑡𝑜𝑠. 𝑁𝑜𝑡𝑖𝑐𝑒 𝑠𝑜𝑚𝑒 𝑑𝑖𝑠𝑎𝑝𝑝𝑜𝑖𝑛𝑡𝑖𝑛𝑔 𝑓𝑜𝑐𝑢𝑠 𝑖𝑠𝑠𝑢𝑒𝑠 𝑜𝑛 𝑎 𝑓𝑒𝑤 𝑝ℎ𝑜𝑡𝑜𝑠 𝑏𝑢𝑡 𝑓𝑒𝑒𝑙 𝐼 ℎ𝑎𝑣𝑒 𝑚𝑎𝑑𝑒 𝑠𝑜𝑚𝑒 𝑡𝑟𝑢𝑙𝑦 𝑒𝑥𝑐𝑒𝑙𝑙𝑒𝑛𝑡 𝑎𝑑𝑑𝑖𝑡𝑖𝑜𝑛𝑠 𝑡𝑜 𝑚𝑦 𝐻𝑢𝑚𝑎𝑛 𝑃𝑢𝑙𝑠𝑒 𝑠𝑒𝑟𝑖𝑒𝑠.
On the laptop computer back in the room, it takes me a couple of hours to methodically edit and optimize 12 candidate images and work on a few of the cliché sunset scenes. As I work, on my small shortwave radio, I covertly listen out of curiosity to a propaganda news transmission from Miami’s large and influential anti-communist forces, programming funded by Voice of America. I fall asleep toward the end of my efforts about 9:00 p.m., realizing that I don’t know where I’ll head next and with no nearby town to the West on my map, have the strong sensation I have reached the edge of the world.