What remains

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Last week one of my classmates very kindly offered to let me use her Canon Rebel digital SLR camera from now until April, as she’s not in the Photography class and isn’t using her camera much. As I’m still waiting (over a month now) for my EI claim to start, I’m quite broke and although I want to buy a used digital SLR for my photography class in school, I can’t. I can barely buy food at this point. Good thing my hubby* is earning, otherwise it’d be borrowing from the Bank of Mom for me. Or… not sure what. More loans?

(*We are not married. But somehow “hubby” seems a more comfortable and real term for him than “boyfriend”, which sounds less like someone you live with and want to spend your life with, and more like someone you play in the park with, I dunno.)

Back in 2010 on my other blog, I wrote about the idea of “what goes around comes around” – how what you put out there into the world affects how you are treated. (Sometimes. Not applicable to things like genocide or apartheid or random acts of violence.) So while it seems like a huge act of generosity on the part of my new friend, (and it is!), to lend someone a beautiful and expensive camera for several months, I’d like to think that it’s part of the give-and-take of relationships, and reflects the kindness I’ve shown her, as well. That’s how I’m interpreting it, so that I don’t feel overwhelmed by it.

Anyway: a new camera, sort of!! Yay! This is quite exciting. I already see the immense difference between the SLR and my little “point and shoot” Canon PowerShot, which does have some manual settings but nothing like the abilities of the SLR. While I’m not yet skilled or practiced with the SLR, I’m already loving the specificity of it – what to focus on, what speeds to shoot at, etc. I also like its heft, its weight, and the big-ass lens. “I’m a serious camera,” it says.

The photos above are some shots I took on a walk around North Sydney last week, as well as in my office (the jade plant).

While I’ve not got the time to expand these next ideas in longer blog posts, I do want to put them out there as “thinking points,” or something. Do always feel free to leave comments with your thoughts, however short or long.

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about:

  • Being a writer and being a woman – seems to mean insecurity! It seems like both groups tend towards not knowing just how good they are at stuff. They are “plagued with self-doubt,” as a friend put it last week, a friend who happens to be an amazing photographer and a very smart person, to boot. It’s also the month where activists focus on fighting violence against women, so it’s on my radar, front and centre: the inequality that still lives like a virus in our society. That infects all of us, in one way or another.
  • Businesses close. People get burnt out. Organizations, for so many different reasons, can no longer do what they wanted to do at the start. People get tired of dealing with stupid, burden-some regulations** that keep them from doing seemingly sensible and productive things like sell products on their farms, or buying out a business, and so they move on to other things, other places. Depending on the moment, I either find this frustrating and discouraging, or I accept it as “part of life” and feel fine about it. Either way, it’s part of the scene of Cape Breton. I guess we all make our peace with the hurdles in our own way.
  • Cape Breton is so many different things to so many different people. (This one comes into my consciousness all the time, now that I write this blog and call attention to myself as some sort of “spokesperson”.) To some it’s home, a haven, a paradise. To others it’s depressing, it’s nowhere, it’s shooting itself in the foot. Can both of these views be true at once? And then there are all the shades in between. Which view will win out, and what do these views mean for our future, collective and individual?

I guess I’m still figuring it all out. What else can you do?

(edit: **I’m not saying that there shouldn’t be any regulations at all. I’m saying that some regulations are plain ridiculous.)

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3 Responses to What remains

  1. My “hubby” and I have nothing but fond memories of our stay in Cape Breton (well, maybe not that killer thunder storm that rocked the RV all night) Enjoy that DSLR while you have it, but remember you can learn the same principles on a point and shoot with manual settings. I took many great shots with one until I finally got my “very serious” T3i last January.
    One comment on your thoughts on women being self-doubters. We have lived in a society that fostered that self doubt from a young age (women aren’t good at math and science, women don’t have the physical strength to do certain jobs, women aren’t worth the same pay as men, Domestic violence against a women is a private, family matter.) Slowly those concepts are changing, but we must stay vigilant, there are still those who would love to go back to the days of women being barefoot and pregnant and taking care of her man.

  2. Rosie says:

    Love your blog and photos! This one was very parallel to my thoughts these days trying to determine how to not have my view of being home be negative and positive in a bi polar kind of way. Someways I feel I could not be more happy and settled with just the little things, and other times I have moments trying to tell if I feel ‘stuck’ or not living up to my potential. Also wondering if I am in the place that creates magic in writing and music, or whether my time is rather filled trying to figure out how I’m going to pay for my grocery order and rent. Also trying to figure it out. Thanks for your post!

  3. Joe Green says:

    Two quick things: (a) how about “partner”? This is the normal term in many circles (where people want to avoid assuming people are married, or indeed assuming they’re not), and (b) *everyone* is plagued with self-doubt, not just writers and women. It’s just part of the human condition and surely a good thing potentially, if used as a spur to greater achievement as opposed simply to an excuse for aiming to fail (not that I would dream of accusing you of that).

    As ever, keep up the good blogging.

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