Input/output (HLD 357)

15 March 2021

Walking by the river this morning with my faithfully sniffing and peeing companion, I was reminded of previous river walks.

Back long ago – BC, in fact (Before Covid) – I used to regularly see the same person by the river.

To set the scene for you, the river I walk by has the city on one side, and people looking at the city on the other. I’m on the ‘looking at the city’ side, and our view is unparalleled. Wide expanse of river, tall building with nice lights on the other side. Throw in some dolphins, some black swans, pelicans and ducks, maybe a few kayakers or catamarans, and there is always something worth watching across the river. You inevitably will see people armed with phones taking photos, and even – shock, horror – real cameras!

The person we used to see down by the river was one of those ‘real camera’ people. He was always there, just around sunrise, setting up his tripod and camera to take a photo of the city. Same spot, same view. Every. Single. Day.

No matter the weather, no matter the season. It could be a beautiful morning with a hint of a gorgeous day in the air. It could have been freezing cold. It could have been pelting down with rain. There could have been thunder and lightning.

It didn’t matter. Same bloke. Same camera and tripod. Same time frame.

I always used to wonder what the outcome of his endeavours would be. I imagined a timelapse of his photos showing the Perth skyline throughout the seasons. Or maybe it would be a timelapse to show whether the city skyline changed at all.

I don’t know what the outcome of his endeavours was. I just saw the effort he put into it.

Every. Single. Day.

He traipsed down to the river with a purpose that wasn’t evident to anyone but himself. The outcome, I doubt I will ever know. Yes I could have asked him, but the dog and I were inevitably headed off to sniff something in a different direction. While I would like to know what the aim was, what he did made enough of an impression on me that I don’t really need to know.

We all do things for reasons that aren’t evident, or even of interest sometimes, to others. There are times too, when we attempt something – whether it’s learning to play an instrument, trying to learn another language, trying to get a photo of the northern (or southern) lights, learning how to play golf, or learning to paint!

It’s often not in the achieving a successful outcome that we gain the most from our endeavours.

It’s the showing up and trying, gaining an insight into how it’s done, that makes us better people.

Maybe I could have taken a photo each day of the guy taking photos – that would have been interesting!!!

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