The sun is shining, I can hear the boisterous sea lion cacophony, and the road is ploughed from my home to the French Creek marina. Time to enjoy the outdoors and create some digital magic.
I have been studiously avoiding the dog’s gaze. It is so nice to go shooting without a dog trailing along…dog owner’s guilt prevails, and I load the dog into the van and head out.
It is cold and snowy, and I have decided to wear a pair of steel-toed boots from a prior work life. Seems more practical than my beaten-up Keens. As I walk to the end of the point, I am reminded that steel toed work boots aren’t actually designed for hiking – they have no give. I lurch to the end of the rocks, and thankfully settle in a sitting position. The dog sits too.
Like I mentioned, it is sunny. I take my lens hood for the 100-400 out of my gear bag, and watch it fall through the rocks to the ground below. No amount of wriggling or stretching will allow me to reach it. A young 5-year-old is soon reluctantly participating in an ‘adventure’ as her Dad holds her by her hands, lowers her through the rocks and onto the ground where she retrieves my errant equipment. I gratefully give her 5 bucks and thank her parents profusely. The sea lions bark. The dog sits.
I take a few photos of the huge creatures as I try to fit into a comfortable position on the large awkward boulders; I discover I have been resting my elbows in gull poop. Lots of it. I discover there is no comfortable position on the boulders unless you are a sea lion. Time to leave, I’m cold, and covered in poop. The dog is bored.
After my gear is stored in my backpack and the backpack in place, I stand up, forgetting that I am wearing unyielding work-boots that don’t lean forward with me; I fall, like a turtle, on my back. I am not hurt, but I am immediately assisted by another 5-year-old and her mother who insists on leading me back to solid ground.
I lurch as quickly as I can back to the van with my dog and leave.