Spare Changes

Jan 1, 2010

Today is not only New Years Day, but Theme Day for participating City Daily Photo bloggers. This month’s theme is Changes.

My house was built in 1900. The windows here have provided a view of many changes over the years. Outside these windows carriages gave way to cars, saplings grew to heritage trees and a Western outpost transformed into a booming, metropolitan city. When I sit at my laptop I often imagine how others once occupied the same place in my home. Perhaps someone sat at a typewriter, or an inkwell, pondering the changing world or wondering about their place in history. Or maybe just jotting down dreams the way we always do when we try to pin them down and make them real.

It’s 2010 — a year that must have been hard to envision by the original owner of this house. It’s a fantastical, futuristic number even by my own born-in-the-sixties standards. Changes have come fast and furious in my own lifetime. When I first decided to be a writer, I figured it out by scribbling a journal in a spiral notebook. When I first tried to imitate the Henri Cartier Bresson’s street photography, it was with an old Polaroid. Now I have three computers, two digital cameras and a cell phone with both a keyboard and a camera. Could I have imagined it all when I was a kid? Probably not. No more than I can really imagine the hovercraft/shrinking ray/internet-wired-int0-your-brain inventions of the coming years.

It’s strange how moments that feel so modern slip into the past before we’ve quite realized it. I remember once, sometime in college, chuckling over the clothes and hairstyles in my mother’s high school yearbook. “Didn’t you all realize how silly you looked?” I asked Mom… while sporting my own Aqua net big bangs, spandex miniskirt and ripped fishnets. Changes find all of us. Eventually.

I’ve stopped trying to guess the future or predict what may happen next. I learned my lesson back on New Years Eve in 1979 when, tipsy off a bottle of warm Asti Spumante, I spoke passionately to my high school friends about how I just knew from the deepest fathoms of my very bone marrow that the 1980s were going to bring about a new decade of selflessness, philanthropy and altruism. Yeah, well, I never claimed to be a futurist. But whatever changes are rolling in by this year’s turning wheel, may they bring you wonder and delight. The future is now. Here’s to a great view. Happy New Year, everyone.

For even more interpretations of today’s theme, check out the talented group of worldwide bloggers who joined in the fun. Click here to view thumbnails for all participants

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