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Samson Learn’s Blog

CEDP Grenada 2015 – I am so completely enamoured with the culture and people of Grenada. Each day we’ve awoken early, loaded all our gear into a 18 seat van and head off into the twirling swirling streets and country roads on an up and down all around adventure through the island of Grenada. Each day is different and exciting and we never know exactly who we’re going to meet or what they might teach us about this beautiful country. Our interviews have brought us into the homes, studios and gardens of local community members in all the local regions (parishes). This weekend we took a 2 hour boat ride to the culturally unique island of Carriacou.

I enjoyed a festival of music and dance, a dinner with our student counterparts, swam under the light of stars and later found myself sitting with a local man asking him many of the same questions we’ve been asking in our interviews. He eagerly answered them all but when the night grew thin and the morning hours became apparent I headed off to my room across the street. In the morning when I was collecting all of my things and packing up for our adventure home I realized I didn’t know where my camera was and immediately began searching. When it wasn’t turning up I thought for sure I would never see it again. I walked a mile up the road to the restaurant we had visited the night before and retraced my steps each way. No camera.

As each minute passed my heart sunk deeper. I have very few things in my life I cherish as much as a camera and the ability to capture a moment, a memory in time. I had to give up, I wouldn’t find it. I was angry at myself and for the first time on this trip I felt emotionally negative. I removed myself from the group and went and watched the waves crash on the same beach I had spent hours at the night before. I reflected on material items, simple living, positive approaches and most of all started to count the many remarkable things I had already witnessed here and tried to tell myself that memories live forever, you just have to tell your stories and keep them alive.

I grabbed my bags and what was left of my personal items and prepared them for departure when I heard my name from the street. I peaked over the balcony to see Ed, a teammate, approaching with a giant smile on his face and my camera in his hand. I ran to greet him and hear how he found it. The man I was with the night before had handed it off to a shop keeper who then passed it along to a streetside produce vendor in the morning. This person was instructed to give it to me and sent a young man to deliver it.  I had forgotten it behind during my late night conversation with the local man. The camera was in my hands but my heart was in my throat. I felt so emotionally restored and grateful.

I chose to share this story because it truly is the perfect example of Grenadian community and the type of people who live here. So gracious and aware, connected and community driven. I’ve learned what it is I truly appreciate about the photos I’ve made a career taking; it’s the stories behind them. And this is a story I will cherish forever. Thank you Grenada!  

PS: I found this photo on the camera afterwards! What a gift!

Samson Learn

Screen Arts Student

NSCC Waterfront Campus

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