Ive been wanting to be out in the middle east just hanging out in a desert ever since I was a little kid. For me, coming to Dubai was one of those bucket list things that I feel ever grateful to be able to do. My friends Gabriel Ruiz and Jeff Gelzinis took me out to hang out with their friend Majeed along the red sand desert in Sharjah - one of the emirates outside of #Dubai . I could not thank them enough for giving me that moment. #Photography
I have been having a blast here out at GPP in Dubai. Wonderful people. Great Vibe. That said, Id be lying if I didn't say I wasn't chomping at the bit for tonight.
Tonight was the night that I connected with my buddy Mohammed. Mo was someone that Jeremy Sulzmann and I lived with when out in Germany. These two guys were so incredibly special for me during my time out there. So much so, that Anna Sulzmann , Jeremy, and Mo were present for when I proposed to Jenn Bontempi Concepcion in London - Mo flying in from Dubai to hatch the plan! (See the whole story here: http://bit.ly/12HRrIP )
That was the last time I saw him.. and I hated that its been that long to see these guys. God, I hadnt seen Mo's wife Romi since we
Awesome story, man!
For those who saw me tear out of New York City as soon as my seminar was over, I'm glad you understood. I had to get home last night.
Had a morning promise I needed to keep before I left for Dubai.
From Facebook we came,
and from Flickr,
tired of the spam
and the nothingness.
Wide eyed and amazed
we posted, we read
we chatted and wrote,
and we shared.
Memories and emotions
successes and failures,
happiness and sorrow,
We hung out, divided by worlds
we made friends, divided by screens
and before we knew it
our world got smaller.
We hung out, in real life
we made friends, in real life
we made memories,
From Facebook we came,
and from Flickr
to look for something
we didn't find elsewhere.
And we found it here.
But nothing is forever.
The friends you gave us
are now beyond our reach.
No memories, no emotions
shared when they happen.
The stream freezes
and then jumps ahead.
We post our dreams,
and share them with emptiness,
of broken promises.
From Facebook we came
and from Flickr,
and for a fleeting moment
you changed our life...
Miss Sandy was the woman who lived next door to us when I was between the ages of five and seven. Miss Sandy was as round as she was tall, sturdy as they come and smoked like a fiend. She had the kind of Southern accent that said, “I am not from the fancy side of town.” Miss Sandy snored as though it was powered by a jet engine and she could fall asleep anywhere. Miss Sandy had a joyous, let-it-all loose, laugh and always seemed happier than she should be. Miss Sandy had a hard life but she didn't always act accordingly. I liked that about her. In fact, I liked her a lot and if I went “amissin'” you could usually find me at Miss Sandy's visiting with her or playing in her yard. It was a fun and familiar place but, one day, it was magical!
This will seem really silly to some of you but it's true nonetheless, so here goes.
One day I went outside to play and (as I would have) I looked over at Miss Sandy's place to see what I could see. What I saw excited me so much that I tore off over to her house like a jack rabbit! Apparently, she was going to put down white rocks as her driveway and those rocks were piled up and glowing in the Florida sun as though they were thousands of tiny angels. I thought they were the most beautiful things I had ever seen and I couldn't believe these treasures were just stacked into a pile for me to admire and, hopefully, play with. ;)
I ran into Miss Sandy's house so excited and begged her to let me play with them. I remember her laughing that laugh of hers and telling me that it was fine with her if I wanted to “play with rocks.” Hilarious! She must have thought I had lost my six-year-old mind, but she didn't treat me that way.
After I had examined and played with this Heavenly quarry I declared (to her) that these rocks were so special that other people would want to see them and play with them and keep them and that, if she'd let me, I would sell some for her and then she'd have some money. I was certain, I was passionate, I believed…in the rocks. ;)
Miss Sandy chuckled again and said, “Sure, take a bucket and see what you can do.” She didn't try to explain to me that she had already purchased these rocks, or that they were (in reality) just rocks I had never seen before. She didn't try to make me feel silly, but she did give me the materials to make a sign with, a stool and a small table to set up shop with. Think lemonade stand only with rocks. Hahahahaha!
Believe it or not, I did sell a few. Mostly to moms with kids just as enamored with these jewels as I was. When I took the coins to Miss Sandy at the end of the day, she congratulated me, smiled and told me to keep it. What?! No way?! Really?! Really. :)
I can tell you this...it rained penny candy at my house!!!
I'm writing about Miss Sandy today because my mom called me this morning to tell me that Miss Sandy had passed away. By all accounts her hard life had followed her, even in how she died. Alone.
Well, I'm not going to let her go out that way. Miss Sandy was all of the things I described above and more. Miss Sandy showed me kindness daily, gave me memories to cherish and taught me that if I worked for something I believed in, that other people just might believe in me. The other lesson she showed me that day was that even if you don't have much you can still be generous to others.
Thank you Miss Sandy. You were a wonderful woman and even though you had little, you left (me) a lot.
Rest in peace.
- the National Association of Photoshop Professionals as one of Scott Kelby’s “The Photoshop Guys” and is the host of DTownTV: The Show for DSLR Shooters. He is the author of the bestselling books “Get Your Photography on the Web” and “The HDR Book”. An award winning Photographer and Photoshop expert, RC spends his days making podcasts, courses, and articles to help people in Photoshop, Photography, and inspiring them to get on the web. For more on what RC does, visit www.aboutrc.compresent
Rafael Concepcion (RC) is the author of the bestselling book “Get Your Photography on the Web” a step by step book for photographers looking to develop their own websites without code, and "The HDR Book - Unlocking the Pro's Hottest Post-Processing Techniques" by Peachpit Press.
As an Education & Curriculum developer for the National Association of Photoshop Professionals and an Instructor for Kelby Training, RC spends his day working on Photography, Photoshop, and how to get users onto the web. RC is also one of The Photoshop Guys. and the host of DTownTV.
An Adobe Certified Instructor in Photoshop, Illustrator, and Lightroom, RC has over 10 years in the I.T. and ecommerce industries and spends his days developing content for all applications in the Adobe Creative Suite. RC has held training seminars in the U.S., Europe, and Latin America, and recently combined his photographic and web experience to teach with famed wildlife photographer Moose Peterson at the “You Can Do It Too” workshops in Mammoth, CA, The Digital Landscape Workshop Series, and at the Voices That Matter Web Conference in San Francisco, CA. RC is also a columnist for Photoshop User Magazine and Light It magazine.
- State University of New York at PlattsburghSecondary Ed English
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