Catherine Lacey: BoyStory

By catherinelacey

Autumn in LA

First day of Autumn, can you tell?

Bit of a challenge following on from yesterday's Blip. My head is still full of the incredible experience and then the unity Endeavour's fly by created in Los Angeles and indeed each of the cities and regions who had an opportunity to see it before us.

I watch its trajectory, circling at just 1500ft over the LA's spectacular landmarks from where I stand, nervously, at the airport awaiting its fly past and later, land. I shoot countless planes before it, refining how I am to shoot the big one, and not knowing exactly the trajectory of whether it will be backlit if it flies slight to the one side above me, whether I will simply see the underbelly and experience that deafening shriek above my head, or I will be shooting the duo on their most flattering side with the sun gleaming straight onto it. There will not be time to run one way or another on the tarmac unless my name is Bruce Willis. I have never felt such adrenalin of getting it right run through me, yet cannot help but compare it to the kiss at the altar, yet that is far less daunting to me. In royal wedding terms, I've witnessed and shot 3 first hand - Charles, William, Edward and to add to that, Diana's funeral. I have always had an intense necessity to be there, and always alone, myself being little more than a tool to create a record for prosperity, yet feeling elated at the experience, an active participant, part of the history.

And so it becomes one giant megalopolis style party to which everyone is invited and the tickets are free. Is it not rare to experience such a unifying phenomena with a universally jubilant response?

Later I ponder the rather slick use of the public's photography in recording such an historic event. Who wouldn't want to capture the Endeavour against the Hollywood sign, the Griffith Observatory, the Santa Monica Pier or indeed, as I chose, the fly over one's head just a few feet above and onto the runway so I could capitalize on that additional kinesthetic sense of feeling the ground thunder beneath my feet. In photography terms, it could only succeed with great public participation and the testament to that will be a record fit for the history books. And for the city's economy, gain public buy in early on (I was later dismayed to learn that many trees are being removed to allow the shuttle to pass in its entirety along its final journey to the California Science Center), and you secure a huge visitor population for the future exhibit. So, save the issue on the trees (as an environmentalist, I don't support a 2 for 1 replacement policy since there were 3 trees to begin with and the destruction of one will only ever leave a deficit of 1), it has been a public relations triumph.

And great to see my images published by the Los Angeles Times.

Joined this afternoon by my friend and fellow Blipper Erick and his delightful daughter Dana so out came the paddling pool (along with all his lovely new gear!). Oh, the cool Autumnal air really sets in at this time of year ;-)

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