This happy photo

by Jon Sullivan - 2019-09-16 - Photography

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For me photos should be an intersection of technique, subject, composition and story. Here's the story behind this photo.

We have a "sushi" restaurant in North county called Wrench and Rodent. I put sushi in quotes because the place is quite unconventional. Scrappy, irreverent and constantly pushing boundaries with it's menu. Very much sustainable farm to table sort of thing. Sort of like a punk version of a sushi restaurant? Hard core farm to table?

Whatever it is, the food is unique and delicious, and at times challenging.

On the visit this photo was taken my dining companion was my sweet heart from high school 40 years ago. My story with Marilee is a Shakespearian drama all by itself, but suffice to say, on this evening I was dining with someone I've never not been in love with since I first knew what love was. The dinner would have been special regardless of the food.

She was visiting from Oregon and I was enjoying sharing my beloved San Diego with her.

When we can, our ordering style is to get one small plate after another to share. So for a place like this we might order a dozen or more dishes between us. This restaurant is perfect for that. Each plate feels like a discovery. The phrase "oh my god" was dropped rather often.

On this night I'd left the DSLR at home and brought my Canon G9 point and shoot. It doesn't capture images nearly as well as the real camera, but it also doesn't require half the table be reserved for it. it's more intimate, more appropriate.

So there we are, discussing the culinary art being dropped off at our table, over and over. The last bit of evening sun peeking through the window. Both of us grinning over how amazing the food is. We're making yummy noises, and I'm in love.

I'm in love. Eating with a beautiful and incredible woman I don't get to spend nearly enough time with. The food is, honestly, perfect. Each dish visually worthy of a great photo. And like all fancy dinners with Marilee, it feels so comfortable and untroubled. So right.

I took a lot of photos of course, but this one is my favorite. I wish I had brought a better camera.

The story of this photo is a love story. A moment in time I will never forget and always cherish, even though it's part of an album of such love stories 40 years in the making. Though I often yearn for things I can't have, when this photo was taken I had everything I could want. It wouldn't last. But this photo reminds me, and makes me happy.

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