Swedish Swan

Friends & A Stored, Storied Swan

I don’t know exactly why, perhaps it’s the book about aging I’m working on that’s making me think about relationships and the shared history I have with so many people I’ve met and gotten to know throughout my life. I haven’t even tried counting, but at 60, it’s got to be a significant number of relationships of varying length and depth. Some were only hours long while others have lasted multiple decades. I reunited with one of my oldest friends from L.A. just last summer.

What makes these thoughts so interesting to me is that most of all of these relationships began with great enthusiasm and assertiveness that we’d always be friends and always keep in touch. This mindset was especially true in my younger years when it seemed so much easier to make new friends. I suppose with age, we become anxious, overly cautious, and guarded when a serendipitous opportunity to get to know someone new arrives at our doorstep.

Or, maybe as we age, we just don’t have time in our lives for new, superficial friendships that don’t appear to add something substantially positive to our journey.

The other evening at dinner, Charlotte and I talked about creating some kind of timeline to visualize our many travels and adventures. Thankfully, I’ve always maintained my photography and film archives and kept them organized and properly backed up (onsite and offsite). All of my trips are neatly sorted, stacked, and structured by continent, country, city, and year. And since the vast majority of all images are in a RAW file format (with EXIF date baked into each file), I can easily trace the month, date, and time of each exposure as well. So, one day, I’ll be able to create a timeline illustrated with my photographs that date back as far as at least late 1996.

I’m currently plowing my way through images I’ve got archived from 22 years of living in Malmö’s Västra Hamnen district. I’m doing this for a brand new 200+ page coffee table book with a curated, créme-de-la-créme collection of photographs from this ever-evolving, increasingly sprawling neighborhood.

It was while going through the year 2013 that I stumbled onto this fine feather friend.

#aging #friendship #thejourney