While spring has begun here's a little reflection of the time past and the time to come.
The whole Corona situation is on top of everybody's mind, but some easy reading might get you through the time of social distancing.
I do see positive effects of the crisis too, check out the airpolution difference (drop of 20%-60%) the KNMI came up with for the Netherlands..
Also working from home without travelling means more time to do things that I usually did not get to.
For me that meant amongst other things that I could appreciate our city of Leiden from a different perspective.
Here is a little example of a sunriser I was fortunate enough to photograph recently..
Somehow this winter seemed to last longer than ever and I got pretty tired of it.
It might be the fact that I worked a little too hard compared to what is healthy, it might also be that I have a growing need for sunlight the older I get :-)
Either way, I am super happy that the days are becoming longer. We have had a few amazing sunny days recently (in fact, today is one!).
Here's an update on what has been happening through the past period.
With our friends Marty and Mona we paid the German divefair Das Boot a visit.
Pretty damn huge fair by the way..
The fair was a first-timer for us and we had a lot of fun... and tasty bradwurst.. and nice beers..!
The day after the fair we also plunged into the 20m deep divetank of Dive4Life in Siegburg.
It was such a pleasure in the midst of winter, when the Dutch outdoor waters are a little chilly for freediving.
I also visited the Dutch divefair "Duikvaker" at the beginning of this year to catch up with many, although I missed out on quite a few.
I made some plans with some and had a few beers with colleague photographers (seems I have only been drinking this winter..).
I dropped by at the Duiken stand which featured a Special on the Bahamas with my image of a great hammerhead on the cover and more images in the magazine.
I also did repairs on some gear I probably will need this year and bought some more too.. (hurts in the bank account) :-)
Later in February I presented for an audience of Duikvereniging de Gooise Onderwatersport Vereniging in a packed library hall of Hilversum.
This evening I got almost "carte blanche" from the organisation to tell how I practice my photography.
I talked about freediving and Northsea diving, about storytelling and how I got into this.
There were lots of positive words in between the two halfs of the evening and afterwards.
Everybody even stayed during the break, so something must have been going well :-).
I had worked on using some of the video material we gathered through the years, which resulted in some music videos. Those were received very well too!
After the talk we had drinks with the members of the diveclub (I know.. again drinking :-) ), which must be one of the most active diveclubs in the Netherlands.
Honestly, it was such a great evening with nice people in an otherwise long and wet winter!
I am looking forward to all that this year has in store in terms of travel and storytelling.
Yes, we will all need to see how the Corona virus situation evolves (wishing all strength to get through these times), but I do believe that when summer approaches things will get better for all of us..
As said, some trips I do not have hopes for anymore as they were supposed to happen sometime soon.
Others I do expect to still be possible and I am looking forward to a great mix of cold and warm water diving.
Closing with a little reminder for Social Distancing I came across on the web...:
I will go (distancing myself from others) and see if I can create some more nice images of the canals in Leiden in the meantime..