I frequent occasional communities: the fast Monday night bike ride (a winter-only occurence), the slow Monday night bike ride (a summer-only occurence), the Saturday morning bike ride (used to be every week, but then the fair-weather friends dropped out when the temperature dropped), the monthly Taize services (every third Sunday for years now, plus an occasional feast day), North Carolina Yearly Meeting of the Religious Society of Friends (Conservative, and yearly), the Tuesday night vigils, (weekly after 9/11, then fortnightly, now monthly), and the Norfolk Catholic Worker soup line (Tuesday, Thursday & Saturday mornings). That’s not to mention the Virginia Beach Monthly Meeting of the Religious Society of Friends (weekly, on “First Days”), the press corps at peace rallies (every 1-2 years), my mother’s extended family (Thanksgiving, Christmas & Independence Day), my father’s extended family (not so often as my mother’s), and most importantly now, the new family of Jennifer, Imagica & myself (almost daily now).
I find myself often on the periphery observing, less often at the center participating. My prediliction as a photographer is to stay at the edge, watching, learning. But perhaps more often than I care to admit I am drawn to the center. There is no detached observer, no objective viewpoint, my mere presence, with or without a camera, effects the group dynamics.
Short of nuclear families and monasteries, can there be anything but occasional communities?
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