I sat hunched over and jacketless while cold wind and sea spray exploded about me. It was not early enough, and I knew that even as I shot these pictures, but I was in tourist mode, and looking out at the blue ocean and these prehistorically powerful pelicans launching themselves into the air above salt and sharp sea foam made me stop. Pelicans have always been my favorite birds. They have an almost mechanical elegance and a sturdiness of design that brings certainty into the world.
I watched these birds rise and dive as my family lingered nearby—my wife with the baby in the car perched far above and beyond me, Alison hovering at the shore waiting for me to get the shot I’d come to get.
Unfortunately, that shot never came. This is as close as I got. Though I waited there probably close to an hour, the birds never quite took the leap that I’d hoped to catch. Despite this, it was a good morning, and I did get a few shots that I like.
The lesson for me is this: You can wait and wait and wait, but that does not guarantee that you will ever get what you’re waiting for. So we sometimes have to be satisfied with what we are able to get. For me, on this particular morning, the process of waiting and the opportunity to take the shots I did get are reward enough.