I had a rather exciting year.
and, as of last Sunday, have spent this past 12 months literally around-the-world.
if this is your first time here, I feel the need to preface this with sure, from the surface, I might come across as an adventurer, which is great – no one hates being called an adventurer… and I do love a good adventure, but if you’ll take the time to read the stories and not just look at the pictures, you’ll see how surrounded I am with very generous, very kind and very tall peopleÂ who let me stand on their shoulders to see The Big Show…even if that means that they’ll miss it.
and therein lies my gold.
but yeah, 2010…
- a year ago today, I was doing a little work with the [re]think:hawaii crew out in Honolulu.
- I used the money from that to head off again, stopping home in Tulsa, OK to revisit what I missed so much about it.
- from there toÂ Philadelphia, spending Thanksgiving with some of my favorite [and funniest!] people at The Clovis Household. it was also my first time to the Eastern StateÂ Penitentiary, a now-new favorite.
- took the gorgeous train ride up to Boston where I got to spend a few short days in theÂ presenceÂ of my favorite writer, Adam Cohn.
- and then finishing off in NYC, with too much fun. as usually happens in NYC with good people.
- another trans-Atlantic flight back to the UK for a few days and then to Berlin for Christmas. and I cannot tell you how much at least one Christmas be spent in Berlin.
- having never been to Turkey, I went to Turkey.
- tried twice to get into Syria. and highly, highly suggest it.
- ran out of money… again. and asked for help… again. and wouldn’t you know, I made enough to get me to where I wanted to go.
- which took me to Beirut – any texture-loving photographer’s dream.
- a quick stop in Israel to see an old friend. and an old friend.
- finally got to see and experience Petra. and could have stayed a week. jaw-dropping.
- and then had a second idea of how to do what I want to do.
- made it to Egypt. didn’t really like Egypt. except for one neighborhood cafe – which made up for everything else. I would wait for a week in talks with National Geographic about my idea. but in the end, it fell through. which sucked. and so…
- I packed up for Africa. but I wasn’t ready for Africa, and had to, at the age of 33, phone Mom and beg for money to fly out, as the Embassy in Ethiopia suggested I do.
- somehow, I ended up back in England. in a gorgeous three-story house on the coast. all by myself. got drunk on St. Patty’s and used the money I had earned – money that was supposed to get me back to America – to buy a boat. spent the summer trying to convince myself I could sail, and usually failing miserably. if it hadn’t been for Nick, I’d have given up.
- got myself a nephew, and he changed my life.
- lost an old friend.
- made a new one.
- met a redheaded Canuck and fell in love.
- and then lost another friend.
- got flown to Venice to photograph a wedding.
- then spent a week in Paris with a few besties – and had the experience everyone hopes for.
- wasÂ barely allowed back into England.
- and then convinced the pretty to move with me to Vietnam. things worked out fine there, jobs were had and stability was somethingÂ reoccurring, but she needed a beach and I the mountains – both of us missing friends. so she left for Australia. and I for my extended-family in Oregon. give me a few drinks and I’ll say it was nice to halt a relationship on such good terms, but then give me a few more and I’ll tell you how much it blows.
- so now I sit in the middle of Oregon – between a theatre room and a chicken coop. there’s a light snow outside and some strong coffee in. I’m a few months away from being able to print a novel – one that’ll hopefully take me back to England next spring for The Big Trip on the little red boat.
32, 168 miles.
and many more highlights that I’m sure are being forgotten.
but, as stated, if you look closely, you’ll see that I had very, very little to do with it.