|First Date, photograph by Shannon Finney, February 2013, West Palm Beach, Florida|
Sometimes the best photos just happen when opportunity and
preparation collide, as they did on this day as I strolled around the
historic Breakers property in West Palm Beach, Florida. It was an
unusually brisk evening, with thick, fluffy white clouds hiding the sun
from us on the ground. It was an epic game of atmospheric peek-a-boo.
For a brief moment, I managed to catch the sun, soaking in its
generous warmth, but then, as the day grew older, I realized that I
would have to continue this pursuit another day. I had run into the
couple pictured above earlier in my walk. We greeted each other and they
told me that this was their very first face to face meeting after
months of telephone calls, online chatting, and Skyping. They noticed
my camera, and awkwardly asked if I would snap a photo of
them with their iPhone, which I did. They thanked me and I
wished them luck, and I walked on, continuing my stroll.
An hour later, as I retraced my steps, I spotted this couple, again,
only this time, in the shadows of the sun, and the sounds of the surf,
they were still. In the interim, between our initial meeting and now, he
had taken off his jacket and placed it around her bare shoulders.
And there the two were, motionless, but not emotionless. I hope that
their first date was not their only date.