This week has been a strange experience.
I've always been open to the idea that "There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy". (Hamlet Act 1, scene 5). So spiritual healing, telepathy, etc., are possibly there.
A friend of mine (Darren) and I have been hanging out for a while now and have shared photo equipment, knowledge, skills and a love of the stage. We share a sense of humour and he's probably the only person who can consistently make me belly-laugh.
Another friend, Nadina, is someone I met late last year when she was entering photos for herself and her partner in the IPF Print and Projected Images competition. I have since become good friends not only with her but her 6 month old daughter and her partner AND I have photographed her in the studio. The session was something I really enjoyed and gave me a little spur of inspiration. Nadina was in Edinburgh last week with her daughter Dani and came home on Saturday.
Yet another (and dear) friend of mine (Ruth) and I lost touch with each other a couple of years ago. She had been a very supportive friend during a crucial time and introduced me to the Drogheda Camera Club where she encouraged me endlessly to take more and more photographs, enter competitions and to "go for my L". A measure of her photo skills is evident in her distinctions - FIPF and ARPS.
The last component in this tale is my entries in the Dublin Camera Club's Winter League competition. As I have explained before, the competition runs from September to February and a number of the top-scoring pictures are retained and in March they are judged as the "best of the best" competition. There are 1st, 2nd and 3rd places in the sections novice, intermediate and advanced. And then there is an overall winner chosen by the judge from the three "firsts". There are three categories overall - colour print, mono print and digital projected image.
Yesterday I visited Nadina and dropped in some prints I had collected from Denis Whelehan that were superfluous to requirements in a competition. We talked about what I was doing later - meeting up with my friend Darren and going to the Dublin Camera Club for the competition judging. I left and went to the club and was going to sit down when the judge and I spotted each other and looked at each other in disbelief and joy - it was my friend Ruth. After probably the biggest hug in history followed by a succession of "How aree YOU?" questions, I looked down the club gallery and could see the look of wonderment on the members' faces that might have said "That's it! We've had it! He knows the judge".
In the meantime, Darren sent me a text to let me know he couldn't make the judging but to keep him apprised.
We settled down for the judging and I won 1st in the advanced section of the projected images and 1st overall so I guess a medal and a cup? The look of surprise and delight on Ruth's face when she found out she had selected my photo was worth more to me than either the cup or the medal. Sorry DCC.
The next elelement in the tale was that she chose my friend Darren's photo as 1st place in the novice section.
The final element now links all the rest. Darren called me this morning and during our chat told me that his brother (and his wife) had been in Edinburgh last week and came home on a flight last Saturday. During the flight they started up a conversation with ........... Nadina.
Too many coincidences and happy happenstances.
By the way, this was my winning picture.