Today has been a very... strange day.
Let's fast forward to late afternoon:
I came home and signed onto my email having neglected it over the past few days. In my inbox I found an email from my 8th grade teacher with whom I haven't had any correspondence since I was 13. He happened to find my work online and sent an email inquiring if I was the Courtney Cerruti he once had taught many years ago. It was a nice and unexpected surprise.
Later, I went for a walk and while stumbling down the hill, ipod on, I looked up to see a fawn in silhouette about 50 feet away. I stood still, transfixed by the simple joy of seeing its tiny body outlined in the setting sun's rays. After a moment of us watching one another, it trotted off across the street. The spell broken, I took a few steps forward and was met with a second fawn as it too stopped to regard me before cantering away. And of course, following its little ones, a mother deer emerged from the brush and trotted after her babies up the canyon wall. I smiled to myself at the unexpected appearance of this very common yet treasured scene.
I proceeded along on my walk, nearing home, when I noticed a fare amount of debris scattered on the street. Upon closer inspection I discovered that the little squares littering the road were discarded slides. Over a span of several blocks I collected over 100 slides and even a few semi crushed boxes labeled in neat script with the following descriptions:
Sacto Blue Bldg
Margie's Florida Trip
Signs in Mendo
... a most curious list...
These brief labels and the images they described made me wonder about the person who took the photos, the nature of their trip, what was documented and why the slides were discarded on the side of the road. Did someone toss them out the window in an act of liberation or did they fall out of a carelessly packed suitcase strapped to the top of a car? Would the owner of slides be heartbroken over their disappearance or would they even notice their absence?
These events are not so remarkable and maybe not even unusual, but they made me think about all the ways in which people exist in the world and how an individual's story can intersect another's. If I stop for a moment and think about all the people I've encountered today and how at the moment we spoke or exchanged a smile, our two worlds, existing in their own time, space and experience touched for just a moment before spinning off again in their own direction, it occurs to me how much opportunity there is in this world to change the course of another's life...
Despite the events of today I am grateful for an unexpected email, a moment of beauty in nature, and a trail of lost memories like a line of breadcrumbs leading me into an unknown future.