clandestine meetings

We have been having the hottest, sultriest weather for weeks now. One of the greatest pleasures is waiting till the evening and taking a cooling dip in the lake. There are a few to choose from in this neck of the woods, but for me, the best is Montbel. Apart from a couple of inevitable busy spots with buvettes, pedalos and surveilled bathing, there are plenty of places to swim that are natural and relaxed, peopled by the occasional camper, dog-walker, horse-rider and fellow swimmers.
All hail the zoom lens! I've heard (if anyone can confirm or disprove I'd be very grateful) that taking pictures of the general public in France is illegal. If it's true, then I'm a serial offender, please don't cuff me Sarge.
But at least the zoom on my Praktica allows me to lay low in the grass, snapping unseen. Like a wildlife photographer crouching stealthily on the savannah waiting to catch the cheetah to bring down the impala. Or maybe not.




Today is a momentous day for two reasons. First off, exactly a year ago I started blogging. I'd never tried before, I thought I'd never get any readers and felt very self-concious and a bit silly about it all. Who on earth would be interested and what would I write about? I fully expected to make a complete tit of myself and scuttle off into the shadows after a couple of months. Yet here I am, still waffling on and still enjoying, whilst not the sound of my own voice, more the sight of my own voice and the sound of my tap-tap-tap on the keyboard.
Well, the secret I mentioned earlier was a photography competiton I entered, for the Ouverture Festival running in July. Only 15 selected winners and I am one of them. The brief was un histoire en photos (a story in photographs) and a story had to be told in a series of 5 to 7 photographs They had to tell the story yet each image must be able to stand alone and of course, be original. I submitted 2 stories,  "ailleurs l'herbe est plus verte" (elsewhere the grass is always greener) and "la lettre" (the letter).  As yet, I'm not sure which was the winning story, but a soon as I know I'll post the pictures to share.
To think, when I went through the back of my wardrobe and somehow ended up in Blogland a year ago, I hadn't picked up a film camera for donkeys years, didn't have a clue about photography as art and was just stuck in a rut of making little illustrated prints for etsy and that was getting me down, feeling I was not flexing my creative muscles enough and concerned too much with making money instead of following my instincts.
What a journey I've had my friends, so glad to have met you along the way. For me, the grass actually was greener on the other side.