In this case it wasn’t so much the view as it was meeting fellow photographer Ray Bruun and talking about some of the ins and outs of photography. While I took this shot my nemesis showed up at the base of the spire to taunt me. Its a white egret that seems to love to fly near and hang out with anyone not named Rob Simpson. I looked over my shoulder and sure enough there it is about four feet away from the ten or so people hanging out there. I decided to keep doing what I was doing because by the time I broke down my gear and got over there it would just fly away anyway. As if reading my mind it flew up over the crowd and landed twenty or so feet from me. Temptation is now too much so I pull the camera off the tripod and just as I attach a lens better suited for the distance it decides to take off. With the bait and switch complete it took off into a little area that was harder to get to.
I think Captain Ahab and I have similar paths in life, always pursuing an elusive white animal with limited degrees of success. Instead of heeding his cautionary tale I press on. I climbed up to the spot where I thought I needed to be and set my gear down so I could climb down. As I’m climbing down and almost falling into the water (new glasses are tough to get used to so my perspective is off) I hear the sound of my tripod crashing and not just over on it’s side but into the water. I at this point am starting to get frustrated with this bird so I grab an old tree root and fish my tripod out all the while thanking heaven profusely for not leaving the camera on it. A short jog over some loose river rocks and I spot the egret just under the Sulfer Creek bridge that connects the Sundial Bridge area and the rivertrail. I could have gotten such a great shot had I just went over the bridge instead of my first plan. Lesson learned. So I grab my stuff and hustle over to the bridge just in time to see the egret head upstream and out of line of sight.
If I could have I would have thrown my tripod at that stupid bird. Instead I carried my wet tripod and soaking wet shoe and made my way to the car. It’s tempting to feel defeated but I did get the shot I set out to get and met a really cool photographer in the process. I’ll get that egret another day.