A Backyard Moment

Ah, how does one properly describe the feeling of shock and awe when looking back at old photos—and realizing just how terrible they are? The haughty is humbled, and I wonder that my earlier days shooting digital, in this instant Canon’s original Rebel, could produce such a collection so unpleasingly composed, and poorly exposed and/or focused. The Featured Image and its companion are among the better backyard moments from the hundreds of older pics reviewed this evening. Their main value to me is sentiment.

During our family’s Maryland days, before unwisely relocating to California in October 2007, our other rabbit occasionally romped around the backyard (Daisy was the other, and, oh, how she was loved). I guess we were way ahead with the gender re-identification and change-the-pronouns social trend. “I identify as a female” would be what Mayflower would say if able to do more than squeak. She was born a he, but we didn’t know that at the time of naming. So him became her. Vitals for his—or is that her or their—portrait: f/5.6, ISO 125, 1/60 sec, 55mm; 11:27 a.m. EST, Nov. 16, 2005.

The second shot shows Leo playing with leaves as Mayflower hugs the fence. The tabby cat lived outdoors the entire time that we cared for him. He adopted us in early 1998, and he would have happily come inside but our landlord wouldn’t allow cats. If I could turn back time, Leo would have spent nights and most winters warmly snuggled in the house. Vitals: f/5, ISO 100, 1/60 sec, 18mm; 11:25 a.m., same day.

Returning to the topic of bad photography, the animals’ movements make them ever-so-slightly-enough-to-be-annoying blurry. Slightly faster shutter speed, even 1/125 sec, could have solved the problem. Live and learn, as they say—even if sixteen years is necessary to get the lesson.

Update, May 23, 2021: After clicking through to one of the three related posts, I am now uncertain who took these photos. My daughter may have been the shooter.

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