Memories are important. They can help us learn from our mistakes. They can remind us of good time’s we’ve had. Photography is a great way to remember details that get lost among the millions of memories in our minds. That’s why I love (and I assume most people love) looking at images representing events we’ve experienced.
I remember, on one of our trips to the Grand Canyon, I gave my son a Kodak digital camera to take pictures with. I just said “Take some pictures” and I looked forward to what he would capture. The photo above is of a mule in the coral at the edge of the canyon. People ride the mules on the trails into the canyon, and it reminded me of a story we used to read to my son when he was very little, called, “Brighty of the Grand Canyon”. I loved the way he saw this mule, and I loved seeing him from my son’s viewpoint.
When my wife and I were first married, her parents lived in Florida, so we visited pretty much every year. One of the things I always wanted to do was visit Gatorland. Gatorland is one of the original theme parks in the Orlando, Florida area. Founded in 1949, it is still privately owned and still one of my favorite parks to visit. I remember how much fun it was to take my son to places like Gatorland!
Another trip was to the Tetons and Yellowstone. I remember driving over the last pass and seeing the Tetons. That sight is amazing, one that you never forget! The Tetons are amazing mountains, and so dramatically rise from the valley below, that viewing them is simply magnificent.
When we lived in the Chicago area, I always wanted to visit the northern part of Minnesota – the Boundary Waters. This is a lesser known wilderness area, and it is kept very rustic on purpose. My son and I had some very nice days fishing there. I remember portaging with a canoe to a neighboring lake, where we fished for Northern Pike. My son claims he caught more fish than I did, and I’m not sure he didn’t – but no matter, we both had a great time. It was amazing to watch a 30″ long fish following our lures all the way to the edge of our canoe before taking a bite. That was a great trip.
These all represent good memories. I have other photos, from sad times in my life, that I look at from time to time. I don’t want to eliminate those photos, even if it’s sad to look at them, because they’re part of my life. Photos of people that are no longer alive. Photos of pets I no longer have. Photos of my car after I had a horrific auto accident. I’m not including any of these here – even though they are important memories – because they are private, and personal, that I don’t like to share very often.
Since I love to travel, most of my good memories are related to my travels – places my family and I have visited. Do you document things you do in your life? I think it’s good to remember things – both good and bad – so we (and others) can appreciate the good, and learn from the bad. I hope you have photographs documenting your life, and I hope most of the memories you have are good.