Lapsed Time

August 22nd, 2019

When a photographer goes on vacation

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I exist between Space and Time. But I’ve become accustomed to it; it’s only for a week.

We’re on vacation — here on the shores of Lake Michigan — at the very outermost edge of the Eastern Time Zone. It stays lighter longer here, a full hour longer than way back in New Hampshire where we used to live.

Our phones and devices keep picking up the time across the lake, then jumping back to this time. My brother’s Android phone actually displays two times, 8:30 pm and 9:30 pm. Sometimes they match the rented cottage’s clocks; sometimes they don’t.

Not knowing exactly what time it is feels weird, but it’s also a bit freeing. Between time, we eat when we’re hungry, sleep when we’re tired and wake up not paying much attention to the clocks.

My wife keeps having problems with her scheduling, though. She’s adding clients to her calendar back home — via her phone — at 5:30 pm in a couple weeks, but they keep showing up as 4:30. Her wristwatch and my car’s clock agree with the cottage. Our “smart” phones disagree.

My wife asks, “What do people do who live here full time?”

It’s nice to be out of time, to be timeless, to go backwards and forwards in time. I’m doing that during the night, too. I’ve been working on a time-lapse photo project about the nighttime sky. Yeah, it’s a busman’s holiday, a photographer taking pictures on vacation. But it’s really fun. I’m even creating the soundtrack; see if you can tell what it is.

Einstein showed us that time is an illusion. On vacations, on photo projects like this, I can begin to grasp what he was talking about.

Time laps like waves.

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