During this period of pandemic lockdown, and as the weather has begun to warm, I’ve started smoking meat again on my backyard Weber grill. Being a good Texan, I’ve loved eating smoked meat ever since I was a little kid. One of my grandfathers was a tremendous home chef who enjoyed smoking everything from fish to game, while my other grandfather was a master of pit barbecue, delivering up extraordinary chickens that I still haven’t been able to recreate. When I lived in Austin (and later San Antonio), I fell hard for the central Texas barbecue belt – eating at places like Smitty’s and Kreuz Market whenever I had the time to pop down to Lockhart. So yesterday, as I was smoking meat in my own backyard, I remembered this photo from a visit to Kreuz in 2014.
One of the nice things about reposting some of my old photos is that I get to take a second look at them. Most of the time I like them the way they are. They reflect my style at a period in time, and messing with them seems less productive than working on new stuff that reflects my style now. But every once in a while I think “I can improve on this,” and that’s what I’ve done with this photo from Upper Antelope Canyon in Page, Arizona. I originally took this photo on a trip in 2011, and you can see how it looked when I originally published it over on Flickr. However, eight years later, I want to make some tweaks.
In 2011 we took a trip to the Peak District to see some of the UK’s most spectacularly beautiful countryside. While we were there, we also made a stop at the amazing Chatsworth House where we took a self-guided tour of the house and the grounds. Chatsworth is one of the most famous houses in England (having been used in a variety of television shows and movies you’ve probably heard of), and while the entire house is incredible, I was especially wowed by this breathtaking library.
My day in Paris had started off typically enough. The air traffic controllers were on strike, just not the ones controlling my United flight landing at CDG. The rail conductors were also on strike, but fortunately for me the Ubers at the airport were running just fine. I arrived at the office on a sunny morning without incident (despite ominous reports of riots in some far flung arrondissement), worked for a few hours, and then checked into my hotel for a quick shower and nap. It was during my shower that my jet lagged brain realized the weather had profoundly changed when I heard the din of loud raindrops on the roof of the hotel above me – loud enough to drown out the sound of the shower I was taking.
When we traveled to France in 2010, we made sure to include a visit to Versailles on our itinerary. So much of Versailles is extraordinary, but the Grand Trianon château stands out as one of the more beautiful. This section of the palace was roped off, allowing one to view it but preventing entry. There was a crowd of people all taking photos, so I only had a brief moment to slide in and take a few shots handheld.