Pamela

Lost and Found

Have you ever lost something while travelling? I have. My grad ring in a hotel room. Pearl earrings on the shelf of a houseboat. A raincoat and favourite hat after diving with great whites. My stuff. Inconveniencing no one. The day I lost the basket to the coffee pot while sailing into Anegada…that was a little different. I’d committed a party foul and I needed to fix it. Not a huge deal. But what would have been an uneventful errand at home became a charming side-step into the ...

Empire State of Mind

They were sitting cross-legged on the ground, palms pressed against a mosaic of black and white tiles set into the concrete. The design was circular, littered with wilting rose petals. Pennies arranged along the inner ring. At its heart, a single word. Imagine. I wanted to get my camera out. Photograph them. But I desperately needed to sit down. I’d seen Soho, the Flatiron Building and half of Central Park before arriving here at John Lennon’s monument, but I’d made a huge mistake. I’d ...

I’ve Seen Dead People…

If you’ve never rolled over in bed, opened your eyes and looked directly into the face of a stranger, you’re lucky. And to be clear, I’m not talking a one-night stand. My family has a thing. We see dead people. I mean, I assume they’re dead. Ghosts, hanging around our bedrooms in the wee hours of the morning. It’s only happened to me once. She was just, there. Standing to the left of my dresser. I blinked. And she was gone. So when I found myself in an Australian hotel known for unusual ...

This is Why We’re Friends

I looked down, unlocked my phone and made a selection. Van Morrison. Into the Mystic. It starts with a few strums of the guitar… ‘We were born before the wind. Also younger than the sun’. I’d been at it for hours. Thumbing through playlists for the right songs. The ones that slide down your spine. Make you breathe deep, roll your shoulders back and relax. I looked around. They dug it. Everyone was smiling, eyes closed, heads swaying. It was a perfect night. When I started writing ...

Fake Plastic Trees

It was like that opening scene from Forrest Gump. A white plastic bag fluttering by. Turning over on itself. Somersaulting. The only difference. This one was underwater. Part of a parade of juice bottles, styrofoam food containers and foil packages caught in the current.

Hell or High Water

The sound was deafening. The whitest of noise. I was at it’s mercy, unable to touch the bottom. A strong current clawed at my legs, pulling me as I kicked and spiralled my arms. Nothing slowed the motion. I could see the place where the water fell away, mist beyond obscuring the chasm.

The Hills Have Eyes

“Are you sure this guy actually likes you?” I thought I was. We’d met when I hired him to take photos a few years back and we still grabbed lunch on the regular. But now, driving down a deserted dirt road to nowhere, I wasn’t so sure. He’d sent me this way. Given me directions to an off-the-beaten-path town that would make for some pretty pictures. Over the last few hours we’d driven deep into California’s Mojave National Preserve. I wasn’t sure we’d make it out.

Fucking Amateurs

I didn’t need to look up, I knew they were watching us. Six people trying to maneuver a boat backwards into the open slip were bound to become a spectacle. They’d seen us coming. The giant logo running along our boom was a dead giveaway. And now, as the wind pushed us sideways towards their anchor lines, the crowd roared. They hurled insults, all in the local language, until one voice cut through the din – fucking amateurs!  We’d been invited to sail the Greek islands about six months ...

Three’s Company

I walked down the stone path towards the arriving taxi. He looked tired. After missing a flight, J had rebooked his entire trip from Vancouver to the Isle of Man. I, on the other hand, had arrived on schedule, more than twenty-four hours earlier. As I led him back towards the hotel lobby, a group at the bar waved and shouted, ‘Pam from Canada!’ J looked at me, confused. In the day he’d lost, I’d become an international sensation.  A year earlier, we’d begun planning for a trip that would ...