I’m really not exaggerating very much when I say it’s been raining here in England since last April. Almost as soon as the Met Office updated its drought declarations to cover the lower three-fourths of the country and instituted hose-pipe bans that affected 20 million people, precipitation began to fall. And fall. And fall. It has not rained all day every day for these last ten months, but breaks of sunshine have been depressingly few and far between. I took this photo in December during one of those blessed breaks. Standing in the shadows and aiming my camera into the sun without benefit of any filters is probably one of the first mistakes they tell you not to make in Photography 101, but the resulting image really moves me, body, mind, and soul.
I want to move forward down this path, out of the darkness and out of the debris scattered by the latest round of floodwaters, to the higher ground I can see just beyond the curve. Whatever is up ahead, the future shrouded in the mist, holds no fear for me, because ahead there is light. The luster of the sodden path beckons hypnotically, propelling me onward in search of its source, until all I want is to feel that light pressing its warmth into my scalp, beating against the flimsy defenses of my closed eyelids as I tip my face to the sky. I want to wrap my entire self in this light, and stuff my pockets with it so I can take it out and revel in its brilliance whenever I feel the darkness closing in. This light is freedom…freedom not just from a string of bad weather, but freedom to get out of the house and out of my head. I’ve been closed in and closed up for too long, though not realizing the enormity of the oppression until it was lifted. Moving forward into the light, I feel weightless and clean and strengthened and renewed. I am alive again, right down to the last cell, and dazzled by the possibilities exposed before me in the light.