I like taking pictures. When I see beautiful landscape or a Kodak moment, I can’t help but reach for my camera and snap several shots. It is as if by pressing the shutter, I can keep that image in my head forever and it becomes mine.
I can take thousands of pictures on one trip, but how often do I really go back and look at them? Especially now when everything is digital and we no longer develop pictures and put them in photo albums, they just remain in a file on my computer.
When I was so into capturing those scenes, was I able to enjoy the moment? I got a nice photo shooting opportunity when I accidentally discovered a big annual festival in Cordoba, Spain. At the end of that day, I reviewed the pictures I took, I felt like I didn’t really witness everything that was captured in my camera. If I wasn’t so busy snapping away, maybe I would have enjoyed the event more? If I had not wasted time adjusting the functions on my camera, maybe I would have noticed some other interesting things in the environment?
This reminds me of the time I was in Ubud, Bali. I was so upset at myself when I found out on the night of my arrival that I had forgotten to bring my charger! I still had five more days in this beautiful cultural land, how can I possibly go on without a camera? I was being very frugal and made sure I maintain the life of my battery for as long as I can, but after the second day, it died on me. I felt my trip had been ruined. It was so foolish of me to think it was meaningless to go on exploring when I no longer had anything to record my memories.
Even though it was so painful not to be able to take pictures of some of the amazing things I saw in Ubud, the mental pictures are still so vivid in my head and I was able to enjoy everything around me to the fullest, with no distractions.
By the way, on my last night in Ubud, I realized that my charger was actually in the outer pocket of my backpack!!!! WHY?!!! I wanted to slap myself, but maybe I needed this experience.
I have seen people traveling without a camera. While everyone is busy snapping away, they are simply taking in everything with their eyes. I secretly admire those people. I still can’t bring yourself to do that, but I am taking less pictures now compare to before. It must be so much more enjoyable to capture images with your eyes.
Do you think you can go without your camera?