Friday, May 13, 2011

A zoom lens.

The Christmas after my oldest baby had turned one, I got one of my very best gifts of my life.  It was a Canon T50 - 35 mm camera with a detachable flash.  I cried when I opened it.  I thought I had died and gone to heaven. And not too long after that, I got the best zoom lens EVER to go with that camera, and I knew that I had died and gone to heaven.  It was with that camera and lens that I started to love photography and started taking better pictures.

I became the official unofficial family photographer.  All of the best pictures my sister Leslie and I have of our little children (because Leslie and I were the only ones who had any children at that time) were taken with that camera.  That Canon did me proud for years - until one extremely unfortunate, sad day, seventeen years later.

It was the very last day of the 2002 Winter Olympics that were being held here in Utah.  Haley was in a little teeny-bop girl band at the time and they were performing one morning in Olympic Square.  I had gone up with all of my kids and my parents were in town from New York so they came with us too.  We had a ball .... the kids rode on the mock luge ride, they got into the giant snow globes and I took their pictures.  We walked up to the Olympic torch and took pictures.  It was just a really thrilling thing to be able to take part in.

Later on in the day Martina McBride was giving a concert right there too ... and I had four tickets.  So my older three girls and I got to see her. I sent my dad home with my two younger ones and the video camera. I kept the Canon to get some pictures during the concert.  (Even with a zoom lens Martina was just a tiny little speck through that lens.  And as luck would have it, I only had two more pictures left on the roll of film anyway.)  I should have sent that camera home with my dad.

After the concert, the girls and I wandered over to my brother's booth before we headed to the car.  He was selling Olympic memorabilia - shirts, hats, bags ... all kinds of stuff ... and of course, Olympic pins.

When we drove into the driveway, I looked around for the camera.  It wasn't there.  I said, "Who had the camera?  Where is it?!?!?!?!"  Panic struck.  My little Chloe started to cry because she had been in charge of the camera.

"Mom, I'm so sorry.  Maybe I set it down at Drew's booth."

I called Drew.  "Please tell me you have my camera there with you."

He said, "I saw a camera sitting here on my counter and thought it was an awfully nice camera to be unattended.  I should have picked it up, but I didn't.  It isn't here."

I cried again over that camera.  Not happy tears.  Aching, sorrowful tears as if I had lost a child.  I had had that camera longer than I had had most of my children.  I just laid on my bed and wept.  Seriously.  It was a tremendous loss for me.  I hated losing all of those pictures we had just taken too ... all of those memories.

I don't remember whose camera I borrowed, but after I had cried for a while, I told the kids to get bundled up again and we were going back to Olympic Square to try and recreate our memories.  (Have you ever done that?)  Moans and groans ensued ... they didn't want to.  I made them.

When we got to the gate there were military guards ushering people out and keeping anyone else from getting in.  The Olympic experience had come to an end.  NOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!  LET ME IN!!!!!  I told one of the guards that I had left my camera at one of the booths and I needed to check at the lost and found to see if anyone had turned it in.  (It was cold and raining too but I didn't care.  I was going to RECAPTURE the memories on film if it killed me!!!!!)

He said that I could go in but my kids would have to stay outside of the gates. NOOOOOOO!!!!  LET US IN!!!!  I can't even remember now how in the world I finagled it, but I did, and my kids and I were all inside the gates.  It was looking pretty deserted by then but I kept running all over the place telling my poor kids to get in a shot ... "You guys - quick, stand over there!  Hurry, get in there and look at me!  Wait, just Elliott and Sophie."  It was terrible.  Especially since my camera wasn't at the lost and found.  I filled out a form and was told that I could keep checking back at an address in Salt Lake City for the next few weeks to see if it ever showed up.

I knew it wouldn't.  I was right.  I was so sad.  The only consolation, all these years later, is that I wouldn't be using it now anyway since pretty much everything is digital.  And I never have gotten another zoom lens.

But Chloe did .... and I took it to Elliott's track meet the other day and had a really good time with it.

I captured Elliott way down on the field.  I captured he and his friends and their fun antics.  And then I spotted a girl who looked just like the girl over at the blog meohmy!  I was sure it was her.  It looked like her to me ... and the guy she was with looked like the husband over at meohmy too.  (She was so adorable in person too.  And soooo tiny.)  Then she reached into her stroller and picked up her little boy.

Oh.  Nevermind.  The girl at meohmy has a cute little girl named Presley.  Not her.

(Elliott and his friend.)

(Elliott and more friends.)

(Elliott, his friends, and their antics.)

(The girl who looks so much like the girl from meohmy.)

(The girl and her husband who looks similar to the husband from meohmy.)

And then I saw this guy through the eye of the zoom lens.

Hey?  Isn't that the guy who used to work right next door to my office?  That I had a little crush on because he is so handsome and charming?

Yes it was.  I took his picture.  And then I completely felt like a stalker.

Shoot. (I need to get a zoom lens.)


  1. love this! I have got to get to bed! I will post a proper comment tomorrow! goodnight!

  2. the best part about this is that I know those people who you thought were from the meohmy blog! their names are tyler and whitney. super random.

  3. Cute blog...I lost a watch that was my mom's and I felt the same way. She wore it everyday...and it fell off of me at The Grove in LA. I felt like I left her there...and drove back that night to find her...but didn't! I was so sad!!! =0(
    What camera did you put this zoom on? Cause the photos look great!

  4. Our youngest son was in track all through high school, and don't you just love watching them with their friends competing and cheering each other on!?
    Oh my gosh that photo of them flipping~ is awesome!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Show that to them when they are 40! hahaha!
    Your children leave at that hour too! That is so funny!
    Were we like that.... yes. will they be like us one day... yes.
    Have a pretty day!

  5. Yes, please tell about the camera! Great pictures! 2 weeks ago I was out taking pictures of my son pole vaulting and inbetween one pic to the next, my camera broke!! I need suggestions; please!

    I am not afraid to take those "stalking" pictures. It entertains me. They are out there, I want their image; I'll take it and post it! Very enjoyable!

  6. you are so cute polly- but he is quite handsome!

  7. cool camera the pic's and that man is good looking..are you looking? Did you feel like the paparrazi taking all those pic's?! LOL

  8. Ohhhh...sad story! I would have reacted the same exact way that you did. Does it still hit you occasionally? I am so mad at the person who took it! But, I guess if you have moved past it then I should too. Ha Ha

    Great pictures- and you are hilarious! Total stalker. :) Ha Ha Love it!

  9. Great shots. I am soooo sorry to hear about your camera. I have fears of doing the same thing with mine.

  10. hahaha. you're funny.

    that was such a sad day. (not "a happy little thing") but, you're right, things are digital now and you couldn't have used it much longer. still sad.

    also, if i had been there, i would've told you that girl is not the girl from meohmy since i know her and her husband from school. both in my graduating class. ha.

  11. pretty sure McCall and all of us girls were stalkers in highschool. Took pictures of us on our "boyfriends" ( AKA crush) front porch! Now that is stalking! ha It's SO great having a nice camera!

  12. Isn't it only stalkerish if they turn around and catch you in the act??? Or read your blog........:)