When I started seriously traveling I bought a camera. Two actually. Traveling and photography and complementary disciplines.
I religiously took photos across Asia, Africa, the Americas, and Europe. I catalogued the pictures based on location, who I was with, why I was there. I am great at creating organization systems, and I had I system I was very proud of.
I published some of the pictures on Facebook, some on this blog. Others I just kept. I also digitized all my old photo albums and added those to the library, painstakingly noting dates and locations.
It was all going swimmingly, until…
I lost it all. I had too many photos and iPhoto became corrupt and somehow the backups weren’t backing up my pictures and my hard disk backup was also corrupted. The chances of all this happening are infinitesimal. The geniuses at Apple assured me I was special.
I didn’t feel special. I felt miserable. I felt picked on.
Until, I had an epiphany. Two actually.
The first: if a tree falls in the forest and no one is there to hear it, it still freaking fell. Just because I don’t have the pictures of what I did and where I went and who I met didn’t mean it didn’t happen.
Pictures are a memento of travel, not the point of it. I still climbed Mt. Kilimanjaro. I still dove at the Great Barrier Reef. I still floated in the Dead Sea. It sucks that I don’t have the pics, but I have the memories.
The second: things are just things. And, they can often be recreated. When my mom died I inherited the ring she wore everyday. It was a garnet (my birthstone) surrounded by pearls, in a diamond shape setting on a simple gold band. I loved that ring when my mom wore it, and spent hours playing with it while it was on her finger. It meant the world to me after she died. Until…
I lost it. At my company’s gym. I took it off to workout, and somehow it disappeared. I was miserable.
Until I had an epiphany. Things are just things.
My mom didn’t raise me to be materialistic. This ring was just important to me because of the symbolic connection to my mom. So, I went to a jeweler and had them make me a replica. It means as much to me as the original would.
So, with my pictures, I found a company who can restore corrupt digital files. They said they were able to restore 18,357 of the 19,146 files that were on the hard drive. The restored files are sitting unopened under my desk, waiting for me to be ready to start my photo library from scratch again.