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Friday Slide Show: The Prowler Share This on LinkedIn   Tweet This   Forward This

2 September 2022

There's an argument to be made (and it's been made) that having a camera in your hand is like a free ticket into places you otherwise would not be allowed. On that other hand, though, having a camera in your hand while walking around in public (which anyone is free to do), can make you a suspicious character.

We're often wary of appearing to be a prowler casing the neighborhood when we take our daily constitutional around here. We avoid photographing private property for just that reason (although sometimes, we can't help ourselves). It may not look like you are complimenting someone when you take a photograph of their pride and joy.

We live in a suspicious age, apparently.

But desperate men do desperate things. And besides being desperate, we're frustrated every time we take a walk without a camera and see half a dozen things we wish we could photograph.

So we become a prowler with a camera most of the time. And recently we had a rewarding hour winding our way around some nearby streets.

We're often wary of appearing to be a prowler casing the neighborhood when we take our daily constitutional around here.

There was, first of all, the once ornate corner building being gutted. We are always smitten when, looking through a window, we see right through a building to the sky on the other side. And this one was irresistible with a ladder propped up on the open window on the opposite side.

A wide and undulating staircase (one of San Francisco's famous staircases, in fact) is always a challenge to shoot. But we found a stretch elaborately fenced that seemed to suggest the difficulty of ascent.

At the top, the hill is shrouded by tall pines and redwoods. We took a closeup of the bark, which was a neighborhood of its own.

Sometimes a little landscaping caught our eye. A row of dark succulents against a light stone path. Or a single river stone sitting on a step of flagstone as if it had escaped its border.

We were, prowler-like, peeking into the window of a long side of a house when we realized the triangular room narrowed to a very tight corner. What, we wondered, would you do with that cramped corner? A bookcase? Nope, a fireplace, we realized when we turned the corner.

There were the quirky props too. An English mailbox, a bench with a seal painted on it. Different kind of seal than the mailbox.

And a few plants we couldn't resist, of course.

But the last image (featured above) was a real treat. A row of three windows in one frame with white shutters and three permanent wreaths hanging on them. There was some sort of perfection about it that was marred by the optical distortion of our zoom lens. So we corrected the distortion and calmed down.

Then we put our feet up and admired our work. It was the perfect way to end a hike.

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