Back in September of 2006, myself along with good buddy Steve, April and Brent took a road trip to the NAS Oceana Air Show in Virginia Beach, VA. You can see my full flickr photo set from the day here. Lots of awesome pictures if you love planes. Anyway, half the day was wasted driving, or sitting in the car simply waiting to park. But once there, we took an almost 2 mile hike and infiltrated the airforce base itself. Walked right out onto the runway.
Of course, so did thousands of other people.
Luckily for the spectators, they had this super strong highly visable red plastic fence to separate us from the multiple ton planes taking off, landing, and performing unbelievble acrobatic feats at several hundreds of miles an hour only a few feet away from us.
We saw lots of cool planes, doing lots of cool things.
So anyway… Yes, There is actually a point to this more than just to show you pictures you should of already seen anyway if you follow my flickr! After the air show, there was an addtional, optional event going on at the beach later that night. So we hiked it back to the car, drove from the base to the beachfront, and enjoyed some time on the sand.
At the beach, they had erected a huge King Neptune statue. The festivites of the night were to include a crowning of King Neptune, which was some guy from the local community….
A fly over of one of the air show jets with its after burner on….
And a twilight parachute from if I remember right over a mile or 2 high? I dunno, it was really high.
And their goal was to land inside of a small marked off area on the beach.
Which, of course, they all did perfectly. To help us see them as they came down, they had little glow sticks all over their body. So when they landed, they began to take off all the glow sticks and throw them into the crowd. Of course everyone was loving this and trying to grab them and all the kids were running out into the landing area when the guys were still coming down and they had to be taken away so they didn’t get bonked in the head.
So, there we all are right at the landing area and one of the guys throws a glow stick our way. Everyone jumps up to catch it. To my right there was a little kid and an older girl, and the kid jumped for it, but the girl caught it. I looked over at her and saw she had caught it and when she looked at me I bet my mouth inhaled about a ton of sand, sea water and bird poop from my jaw dropping due to her beauty. Wow, I mean she was just gorgeous, long curly brown hair, beautiful eyes, smile, just about perfect. And I just had to think of something to say so I musturd up the only thing I could reasonbly say to such a beautiful stranger which was “I didn’t hit you up side the head with my camera did I?” She looked at me , gave me her beautiful smile, placed her hand on mine and said “No, of course not”. Or something like that. I can’t possibly remember exactly what she said as I was stunned, I’m sure. She continued to gather her other belongings, and also the little kid as he was apparantly with her. The kid wanted to stick around to get his own glow stick. I thought about it and thought, and finally I decided to ask for her picture. Oh, what a wonderful picture it would be. I finally got the nerve to ask, whipped out my camera, turned it on, got ready to set it up and it shut back off. Batteries dead. I try again, same thing. I shake it, same deal. I had given my extra batteries away, hence had no other backups. I stood there growing more upset as to the ordeal. Eventually, she nodded goodbye and took off into the darkness.
Afterwards, I couldn’t help but to kick my own ass for the stupidity of the situation. What a perfect picture of a beatiful girl it could of been. I would post it up on flickr on the Beautiful Girls, Picturing the Woman, or 10 group. Her face lit up by the surrounding lights, the beach and stars in the background, hair blowing in the beach breeze, holding up the glowstick proudly, giving her wonderful smile. I can picture that scene to this day as one of the most beautiful pictures I’ve never taken. I even went as far as to post on craigslist in that area asking around for her. There would be no way to re-create that shot. The moment was right there, the lighting, the mood, the surroundings, everything was just right. Yet, I can see it clearly in my mind. I resorted to just drawing my own rendition of the scene. But, of course the lack of artist that I am, has absolutely no resemblance whatsoever.
However. My entire point to all of this follows. Yes, I love to string along stories.
If I DID actually get the picture at that time, place, subject, everything. If my batteries did work as intended, and the camera did work, and I still gathered the nerves to ask for her photo, I’m almost sure the resulting picture could never look as perfect as it does in my mind now. And maybe thats intended. The fantasy in the mind is perfect. There’s no specks on the lens, no glare from the street lights, her hair isn’t blocking her face, the falsh wouldn’t overexpose her body, yet you could still see the beach and stars in the background.
No matter how much thinking and fantasing I do, what if I did end up following through with it and it really did happen? And all the imperfections stood out like red-eye. The end result would be dissapointing, unsatisfying, filled with problems and issues that can’t be undone. Maybe the fantasy is better than the reality. And knowing that, maybe it’s a good thing I didn’t get the picture. And I can just revel in her beautiful image in my mind forever. Maybe, next time, I should just keep the fantasy, afraid of what the reality may bring.