Saturday, October 17, 2015

Eyes in the NIght

I used to live in rural Panama in a community with no electricity. The whole town is inside by sundown, around 7pm, and asleep by 9pm. One night, I'm outside at around 11pm photographing stars and I have to turn my headlamp off while the camera is taking the picture, usually about 30 to 150 seconds at a time. 30 to 150 seconds of almost complete darkness. When I finish a photo, I'll turn my headlamp back on and look at my camera to adjust settings and take another shot. One time when I turned my head lamp on, I saw a pair of eyes just about fifteen feet away in the bushes staring at me. I've got friends who have worked setting camera traps throughout the country and I've seen picture evidence that there are still several types of big cats alive and well in the area. I lean down to pick up some rocks, look back up, and the eyes are gone. My house is about 100 feet away. I do my best to turn my handful of rocks and dinky tripod into weapons and run as manly-like as I can back to my house. I never went back out to take pictures at night.

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