Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Meeting with Lippke

I walked up the flight of stairs to his office and stood outside the door for two seconds too long. Within those two pulsating heartbeats, I questioned why I was there. Why I was about to walk into his Belmont Shore office. I shouldn’t have allowed those two seconds to be stolen; I should have held them tightly and taken the breath out of them.
He’s on the phone when I walk in and looks at me like one might look at any stranger walking into his office. He forgot…I just knew he would forget. He places his tanned hand over the phone’s mouth and whispers for me to have a seat. His assistant, thinking I’m a potential client, offers me a drink and it comes in a fancy glass. Reminds me a fat walnut. Thanks, I say as the water slides down my nervous throat.
Wedding photo albums stacked around me like the TransAmerica, Bank of America, and Bonaventure buildings, I begin pouring over his images. Beautiful. Breathtaking, really. What I really want him to say is that taking these pictures was easy and he’ll be more than happy to show me how. I want him to ask me to be his apprentice, like a common day Verrocchio and DaVinci. I’ll accept his offer and then we’d celebrate with Godiva chocolate-dipped strawberries and mugs of hot cocoa. Yes, most my daydreaming involves chocolate.
For the next hour or so, after reminding him why I was there, he sits across from me, his legs crossed like a capital “T”, and talks about his work and his passion for photography. I listen attentively, but every so often I find myself wishing that I’d catch a glimpse of a gold Godiva box hidden somewhere. Underneath that stack of Aperture Magazine would be a good spot. He recommends what lens I should purchase—in another daydream he offers them to me for free—and I dutifully write down what each lens specializes in. Ceremony, check. Preparation detail, check. Reception, got it.
The phone rings and he excuses himself. I drink more water from my walnut. He hangs up and tells me to feel free to look around. Should I start with the TransAmerica or Bonaventure building first? I guess this is the end of our meeting. While I’m extraordinarily thankful we’ve met and he sacrificed some of his time, I’m left feeling empty. I didn’t know what to expect, but it sure wasn’t this vacuous emotion. He’s typing away at his computer when I see a stack of loose-leaf images on the coffee table in front of me. Some are postcards of his images, others are wedding invitations including his engagement photos. I flip through them wishing they were my images, not his. As I restack the cards, one falls on the floor. When I reach down to pick it up, I read a return address from a wedding invitation. Unbelievable. 2459 Jasmine Way. Now, I’m not big into signs and wonders, but this is pretty cool. I smile a crooked smile and finish restacking the images.
After shaking his tanned hand goodbye, I felt good. Sure, I didn’t get my cup of hot cocoa, but I got something better: The belief that I will succeed. And I won’t succeed by being someone’s apprentice, but, rather, I’ll do it my way. The 2459 Jasmine Way, to be more precise.


Blogger Yadira said...

This is so awesome. I just had to come to the same realization in my journey after searching long and hard for someone who would "take me under their wing." Sometimes we're silly. Wings are good, but we already have the best Wing that we abide under...the Wing of the One who put us on this path in the first place - and He's faithful enough to bring us to higher heights than we could ever imagine. You're a testimony to that, Jasmine. Soon I will be, too. Thank you.

5:52 PM  
Blogger Jessie said...

Thank you Jasmine! I found your blog last night and plan to continue to read it until I get caught up :) Such an amazing storyteller you are! A great attribute to being the amazing photgrapher you are!! Girl Power! lol

6:42 PM  
Anonymous Bauhaus Wedding Photography said...

I feel like what gives me the fire to succeed is exactly moments like this. He's the one looking at your photos now.

12:15 AM  

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