Photographs help us to remember.
These pictures remind me of the days when I left the village once a week, to shop first thing on a Saturday morning, before 8am, giving me the chance, within the rules, to walk at a shore, each Saturday morning before 8am in the morning, in rain, mist and shine, just walking and breathing in light.
There are so many things about this time that we will all want to forget, and so many things that we will also need to remember.
I’ve been working through my photographs from last year. They’re nearly all phonescapes, reflecting my current obsession with land, sky and light, but this one sticks out from them all.
It was taken the last day I was at work (at a physical place of work), before we went into the first lockdown in March. I’d finished packing up equipment and papers, and said farewells to my colleagues, none of us then (none of us still) knowing what lay ahead of us.
Before I got into the car to drive home, I went for a final walk in the castle grounds. I mean, I went for a final chance to take a picture, to notice the flowers, to stop for a minute in amongst it all, and breathe in wonder.
When I look back at the picture I’m almost surprised that I did this, surprised to realise that there is something in me that – almost no matter what – feels the need to take the time to stop and notice.
I am grateful that this impulse is so deeply ingrained in me. I am grateful for the photo that reminds me.