This weekend was surreal in so many ways.
First off, I had an amazing client fly me (and my assistant) to New Orleans to photograph her wedding. I’ve been lucky to shoot one to two destination weddings each year — and each one has been absolutely amazing. When I get to combine travel and weddings together, I am a very happy woman.
That said, it is also a new level of stress. I feel even more pressure to deliver amazing photography because I know the client is paying more to cover my travel expenses. And, besides that, I have to plan really carefully to bring every single thing I might need, and I need to carry it all on because losing it on the way would be disastrous. So I’m usually running through the airport, high strung from nerves about doing a good job, ticking through lists and lists and lists in my head to make sure I remembered everything, and just trying to get to the location so I can unpack and take a long breath (and do some yoga).
My flight to New Orleans was easy and on time, and I arrived to the city in great spirits. I remembered on the cab ride to the hotel that I had forgotten to alert my credit card company that I would be traveling (last time my charges were all denied until I did this). So I’m texting Jamie in the cab asking him if he can call them because I’m suddenly afraid that the cab charge won’t go through, but my phone dies mid-text.
We arrive at the hotel and thankfully, the card works. Whew.
I unload and go to check in, where they ask me for my ID. I reach for it, and it’s gone.
It’s not in my back pocket where I put it after clearing security. I calmly sit down and open all of my purse/wallet/etc, and it’s no where to be found. I have somehow lost it between TSA in Minneapolis and the New Orleans hotel, and the hotel won’t let me check in without it. Also, I should point out, while I’m slightly nervous about the hotel situation, I am far, far more stressed out about how I will fly back to Minnesota without a driver’s license.
Ok, so I think I should call the airport lost and found. But my phone is dead. So I start looking for my phone charger. And I look. And I look. And I think I left it at home.
By now I am a frazzled mess. I pull out my laptop and start messaging Jamie through Slack. He is at his desk (yay!), and he is the best thing ever and calls Delta and gets me the numbers I need to check with lost and found. During all of this, the hotel clerk is kind enough to just check me in without the driver’s license (I have other photo ID and credit cards and by now it’s pretty obvious I’m not scamming anyone).
Now, I need to tell you that when I travel for weddings, the bride books my room at whatever hotel they are staying at. I do this so I am nearby in case of last-minute needs during getting ready photos, and usually the bride is in a super fancy suite and I am in a very simple, cheapest-room-available situation. And that’s totally fine! I completely understand wedding budgets and how costly everything is and I have no ill will toward those kinds of bookings. But imagine my surprise when I open up my room to see this:
Those doors lead to a semi-private courtyard (shared by the bride and groom and their children). It had a fountain and chairs and palm trees and was stunning.
It was the calm I needed in that moment.
I took breaths. I unpacked everything to make sure my ID really was lost (it was). And then I calmly called Delta baggage at the NOLA airport.
And they had my ID.
And the hotel driver could pick it up and bring it to me.
And then I found my phone charger.
And just like that, everything was good again.
I chose these images for my Monday post, because the sense of calm I felt the moment I was alone in this room, hearing the trickling water outside and feeling that cool, humid air on my skin was so wonderful, especially in that tense moment of panic. And I think these images show that sense of calm and relaxation.
But I also love the first image, with the door cracked open, because the city of New Orleans is so mysterious to me. It’s dark and a little scary, but at the same time very romantic. Those doors peeking open are a great symbol for me.
Now, for some internet shares of the day:
+ One of my very favorite home decor magazines, Domino, died years ago (the print version anyway) and was brought back as an online-only presence. The editor has created a new online store, and the items are gorgeous. Go see for yourself.
+ I am intrigued by Esquire’s list of the best podcasts of 2016. Some I listen to regularly, and some I’ve never heard of. You can see them here. One of my own favorite podcast finds this year is My Favorite Murder. Go listen to their live show from Chicago (2 weeks ago or so) and see if it’s your cup of tea. It’s two ladies who love to cuss from LA going over famous murder cases and serial killers. Not for everyone, but I adore it.
+ And hearing about this morning routine makes me want a sonos! I love this idea.