Twilight Chaser


My mom asked me why,  in my earlier European reports, the towns looked so empty, from Belgium to Luxembourg. It’s most likely that tourism is down but even more so that I try to find empty streets wherever I am to take photographs. But here in Prague, it’s been quite difficult to avoid the crowds except when I’m in the more residential areas well outside of the sightseeing quarters.  Even late in the evening, people are everywhere, enjoying the summer warmth.  So one day, I am on the streets by 5am. 


My grogginess is quickly replaced by the thrill of having the city, then bridge, much to myself. The only other people around me are stragglers stumbling home from a night of partying or die-hard photographers trying to capture the still of the twilight hours. Like me. 


The problem with being a twilight chaser, besides sleep deprivation, is that you have to move fast. It’s literally seconds to get your shot when the sun decides to set or rise.  Once the sun is down or up, it’s game over. And the other problem is, no matter how many times I’ve waited for the moments before sunset or sunrise, I’m always so stunned by the colors when it happens that the photography falls by the wayside.  I just want to stand there and watch…and then kick myself for not getting the perfect shots. It’s kinda like that on the Charles Bridge this early morning;  in fact even worse when exchanging cameras with others…


Before I know it, it’s full-fledged morning…


and a small peloton has arrived on the bridge:


It’s still very early, but bright enough for me to get some clear, unobstructed shots of the saints:


These are all shiny from the rubbing,


that I myself managed to do during my first visit that day on a very crowded bridge:


I wish I could get a shot of all the saints’ faces on this bridge,


but given their heights it’d be impossible for me to do:


Anyway, one last rub of the saint for good luck,


and it’s time to go back to the hotel for a quick rest before another full day continues..


If I could find a moment of solitude like this in every city I visit, I’d stay a twilight chaser forever.


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