Though I’m in somewhat of a fog every morning, being slow to wake up and all, I sometimes am forced to grab my camera before my eyes have even begun to focus in order to capture something or other that I see right outside my door.
Like the morning sun on the maple tree:
Or Henry, our extremely shy resident groundhog, eating some of our grass:
I love Henry. So does Don. He lives under the shed.
Or a newly opened zinnia:
Some photos I take from just inside the house – Henry, for example. If I stepped outside the door, he would immediately run away. Some photos, like the zinnia, require me to throw on my Birkenstocks and wander outside through the dewy morning grass.
All of this before I’ve had a cup of coffee! But I find that morning photos are often the best, so I muddle through the morning grogginess, camera in hand, and capture the world outside my door.
It’s a nice way to start the day.
My coaching session (via the phone) went well yesterday. And it was awfully lovely talking to my former student, Erika, again. Erika was in Hartford doing a play at the same time I was working there last year. We had breakfast together a couple of times. Way back when, my colleague Rick and I auditioned prospective candidates for the graduate acting program in San Diego. Every year, we would audition candidates in New York, Chicago, San Francisco and San Diego.
The scene: We were in San Francisco at the very end of two long days of auditions. We’d seen every candidate except one person, who had not shown up. She was flying down for the audition from Seattle because she was in the middle of performing a play there and could only audition on one day – that afternoon.
We were tired, we were hungry, but we felt uneasy about leaving. We had no way of contacting her (this was 1994 and cell phones were not the everyday appendage they are now.) A phone call to the Globe went unanswered, as it was a Sunday. Was her flight delayed? We hung around. I went out into the hallway and looked for her. Rick went and looked for her. Thirty minutes went by. An hour went by.
Finally, just before we were about to give up, I decided to take the elevator down to the ground floor one more time to see if I could find her in the lobby. When the elevator reached the lobby, the door opened and a frantic red-haired young woman with a panicked look in her eyes got on. Since I had seen her headshot, I knew who she was. “Erika?” I said. Her eyes locked onto mine and she gave a huge sigh of relief. I explained who I was, told her to relax and take as long as she needed to prepare for the audition.
It turned out her plane had been delayed and she thought she had lost the only chance she had to audition. Thank goodness we waited for her, because she was easily one of the most talented actors we’d seen in any of the cities on the tour. Actually, she’s one of the most talented actors I’ve ever seen.
We have a strong connection, Erika and I.
There’s a book review of The Mockingbird Next Door: Life with Harper Lee on Just Let Me Finish This Page today. Stop on by.