Sunday, May 31, 2009

Photography in Jackson Square

I tried to keep to something resembling my average weekend schedule while on vacation, so I was pretty much up and out around 8:30. As Rich and Jodi are rather nocturnal types, I was on my own for breakfast.

Rule #1: Skip the beignets at breakfast time. CafĂ© du Monde is a mob scene first thing in the morning and anyway, there is no way to avoid spilling powdered sugar all over one’s fresh black clothes.

I happen to have a favored coffee shop on Chartres Street that has chocolate croissants. Except I couldn’t tell you the name. The locals were chatting with the staff about a shooting on Bourbon Street the night before. It sounded very much like the average CPS gang event in Chicago and the lament was that it happened in the "tourist mecca". Anyway:

After coffee, I headed to Jackson Square to read my book in the park. I walked by a guy sitting on a bench. He was eating an apple and looking at a camera on a tripod several feet in front of him. I hoped it was his tripod.
As I’ve said, I have been to New Orleans several times before, but I hadn’t taken any pictures. I felt lame taking the standard tourist shots, so I decided I would take pictures of things I hadn’t seen (or hadn’t seen quite that way) before. I recalled Jodi saying when she first arrived that she had expected to see trees like those in Savannah – I presume she meant with Spanish moss – but instead she saw the palm trees. I thought that I couldn’t quite recall having seen palm-like trees in New Orleans before, but there they were.

So I took a couple of random pictures with my phone and then sat down to read.

Out of the corner of my eye, I saw tripod guy get up and walk over to his tripod. And look through it. And sit back down. And do it again. And stand around for a minute and then sit back down. He must have been waiting for the sun to do something on the statue, but I have no idea what it was. I was tempted to ask, but was afraid that one of two things would happen:

1. He would peg me as a bourgeois touriste and give me the stare of disdain, or;
2. Go all artiste and explain it to me in all sorts of detail

So I read my book for awhile. When I decided that I had been in the sun for long enough, I packed up and left. He was still there.

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