The "Memory" feature on Facebook popped up yesterday with a gorgeous photo of my bigger kid that I'd taken three years ago. We were in Ho Chi Minh City, and my photography group was shooting at a park at twilight to play with the gentle lighting. My photography group is probably the thing that I miss the most about my time in Vietnam – our outings to markets and temples and the tiny side streets were an excellent opportunity to experiment with perspective, texture, lighting, patterns, etc.
I haven't been able to indulge my interest in street photography here in KSA. Wandering around the streets of Al Khobar with a dSLR isn't really encouraged, and even on the compound, photography outside of selfies, snapshots of your kids, and special events may be viewed as poor manners and at the extreme, highly suspicious. It feels like a complicated spectrum.
But there are Saudis and foreigners who make their living as photographers here (this gentleman's blog is abandoned but full of useful info, particularly this); I've learned that while Khobar's favourite look is "Flat and Sand Beige", this country has some stunning landscapes and urban character.
I took this photo over here on the left with my phone yesterday (funky filter also courtesy of my phone); I was returning a book to the library before going to a meeting and turned left one block too soon on when I was back on my way to the venue. I walked for about five minutes before I realized that I recognized none of my surroundings, and inwardly groaned at having to backtrack in the intense heat, but then I saw this interesting little pathway with the tunnel of trees, connecting the road that I was lost on with the road that I really wanted to be on. It was shady and cool inside the archway, and also just delightful to stumble upon something that was worth recording. This also made me wistful for a little piece of my former life, you know?