I love to take pictures. But sometimes, I stop and think about the photographs I didn’t take.
The first one that comes to mind is a new born foal on a misty morning on a back road in Ohio.
I had cut through Zanesville, turning south from I-70. It was around 8:30 in the morning and as I drove a light fog had settled in the pastures that lined the narrow and curving road. My camera was tucked in the backpack on the passenger’s seat beside me. I came into a straight stretch of road and through the mist I saw about twenty horses huddled together by a fence. About twenty yards away were two men and a young boy. One of the men was pulling a foal out of the mother horse as she laid on the ground. I pulled over and reached for my camera. Then I stopped. If I took the time to get my camera out and get the settings just right, the moment would be gone. As the baby hit the ground, I chose to be in the moment. The picture still exists in my mind. And every time I think of it, I smile.
The same thing happens when I pass an amazing sunset behind rolling hills and silos. Barns, some with Amish paintings displayed on the side, draped in the shadows at the days end. The mountain peaks, vibrant green against the spectacular blue sky. A running river, cutting through the forest, white water churning against the grey rocks. I pull over and just sit there. I blink my eyes and take a mental picture.
Family members, celebrations, panoramic views, quiet moments. As many actual pictures as I have taken with my camera, there are thousands tucked into the photo album of my mind. They are there where I can take them out at a moment’s notice and marvel in the incredible picture gallery of my life.