Let’s be clear: this camera was my camera - not one I had borrowed from my parents that was the size of my shoe, with a leather case so weather-worn that I felt like an insignificant part of its journey. Not a camera I temporarily used and returned to them as soon as I developed my (many) rolls of film. No, this camera was new, it was digital, it was a gift to me for the start of this new chapter in my life and it was mine to carry around everywhere. The funny thing is that, while I was already passionate about travel nine years ago, I was not in the slightest passionate about photography. I was simply excited about documenting my experiences, and I barely chided myself if my thumb made a guest appearance in some of the photos.
Nine years ago, to the day, I moved to Milano – a city I had hated during an earlier, brief, admittedly über-touristic visit years before. What I did not expect was to find a home and my wings there. My life in Milano is a whole other story to tell, but what I can surely say is that it was the great beginning of many aspects of my life that define me now. It was the first anchor I dropped, and the first place that I would thereafter return to, again and again.
My life in Milano is a whole other story to tell, but what I can surely say is that it was the great beginning of many aspects of my life that define me now. It was the first anchor I dropped, and the first place that I would thereafter return to, again and again.
Nine years ago, to the day, I took my first photograph of the Duomo in Milano with my trusty Kodak. It was a spontaneous decision to take it in black and white – the spires felt more intricate that way.
I’ve returned to Milano many times and have always found it impossible to resist snapping another photo of the Duomo, as if it were my way to say hello, I’m back, I’ve missed you. The seasons changed, I changed, my cameras changed. After a while, my Kodak retired. I tucked it into its weather-worn leather case, grateful that I had been a significant part of its journey – as it had been a significant part of mine.
P.S. Thank you, Facebook, for reminding me of nine years ago today. What would we do without your (sometimes creepy) look-backs?